A superlinearly convergent subgradient method for sharp semismooth problems

Subgradient methods comprise a fundamental class of nonsmooth optimization algorithms. Classical results show that certain subgradient methods converge sublinearly for general Lipschitz convex functions and converge linearly for convex functions that grow sharply away from solutions. Recent work has moreover extended these results to certain nonconvex problems. In this work we seek to improve the … Read more

Stochastic algorithms with geometric step decay converge linearly on sharp functions

Stochastic (sub)gradient methods require step size schedule tuning to perform well in practice. Classical tuning strategies decay the step size polynomially and lead to optimal sublinear rates on (strongly) convex problems. An alternative schedule, popular in nonconvex optimization, is called geometric step decay and proceeds by halving the step size after every few epochs. In … Read more

Low-rank matrix recovery with composite optimization: good conditioning and rapid convergence

The task of recovering a low-rank matrix from its noisy linear measurements plays a central role in computational science. Smooth formulations of the problem often exhibit an undesirable phenomenon: the condition number, classically defined, scales poorly with the dimension of the ambient space. In contrast, we here show that in a variety of concrete circumstances, … Read more

Composite optimization for robust blind deconvolution

The blind deconvolution problem seeks to recover a pair of vectors from a set of rank one bilinear measurements. We consider a natural nonsmooth formulation of the problem and show that under standard statistical assumptions, its moduli of weak convexity, sharpness, and Lipschitz continuity are all dimension independent. This phenomenon persists even when up to … Read more