FlashR: R-Programmed Parallel and Scalable Machine Learning using SSDs [article]

Da Zheng, Disa Mhembere, Joshua T. Vogelstein, Carey E. Priebe, Randal Burns
2017 arXiv   pre-print
R is one of the most popular programming languages for statistics and machine learning, but the R framework is relatively slow and unable to scale to large datasets. The general approach for speeding up an implementation in R is to implement the algorithms in C or FORTRAN and provide an R wrapper. FlashR takes a different approach: it executes R code in parallel and scales the code beyond memory capacity by utilizing solid-state drives (SSDs) automatically. It provides a small number of
more » ... zed operations (GenOps) upon which we reimplement a large number of matrix functions in the R base package. As such, FlashR parallelizes and scales existing R code with little/no modification. To reduce data movement between CPU and SSDs, FlashR evaluates matrix operations lazily, fuses operations at runtime, and uses cache-aware, two-level matrix partitioning. We evaluate FlashR on a variety of machine learning and statistics algorithms on inputs of up to four billion data points. FlashR out-of-core tracks closely the performance of FlashR in-memory. The R code for machine learning algorithms executed in FlashR outperforms the in-memory execution of H2O and Spark MLlib by a factor of 2-10 and outperforms Revolution R Open by more than an order of magnitude.
arXiv:1604.06414v4 fatcat:dsobnkm2tbbn5oe4h4orqzdzfa