A study of early stopping, ensembling, and patchworking for cascade correlation neural networks


The constructive topology of the cascade correlation algorithm makes it a popular choice for many researchers wishing to utilize neural networks. However, for multimodal problems, the mean squared error of the approximation increases significantly as the number of modes increases. The components of this error will comprise both bias and variance and we provide formulae for estimating these values from mean squared errors alone. We achieve a near threefold reduction in the overall error by using early stopping and ensembling. Also described is a new subdivision technique that we call patchworking. Patchworking, when used in combination with early stopping and ensembling, can achieve an order of magnitude improvement in the error. Also presented is an approach for validating the quality of a neural network’s training, without the explicit use of a testing dataset

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