Skip to main content

Narrowing the Gap: Random Forests In Theory and In Practice

Misha Denil‚ David Matheson and Nando de Freitas


Despite widespread interest and practical use, the theoretical properties of random forests are still not well understood. In this paper we contribute to this understanding in two ways. We present a new theoretically tractable variant of random regression forests and prove that our algorithm is consistent. We also provide an empirical evaluation, comparing our algorithm and other theoretically tractable random forest models to the random forest algorithm used in practice. Our experiments provide insight into the relative importance of different simplifications that theoreticians have made to obtain tractable models for analysis.

Book Title
International Conference on Machine Learning (ICML)