Neuroimage. 2022 Nov 8;264:119728. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2022.119728. Online ahead of print.
Encoding models provide a powerful framework to identify the information represented in brain recordings. In this framework, a stimulus representation is expressed within a feature space and is used in a regularized linear regression to predict brain activity. To account for a potential complementarity of different feature spaces, a joint model is fit on multiple feature spaces simultaneously. To adapt regularization strength to each feature space, ridge regression is extended to banded ridge regression, which optimizes a different regularization hyperparameter per feature space. The present paper proposes a method to decompose over feature spaces the variance explained by a banded ridge regression model. It also describes how banded ridge regression performs a feature-space selection, effectively ignoring non-predictive and redundant feature spaces. This feature-space selection leads to better prediction accuracy and to better interpretability. Banded ridge regression is then mathematically linked to a number of other regression methods with similar feature-space selection mechanisms. Finally, several methods are proposed to address the computational challenge of fitting banded ridge regressions on large numbers of voxels and feature spaces. All implementations are released in an open-source Python package called Himalaya.