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Daphne Koller Publications

Exact Inference in Networks with Discrete Children of Continuous Parents (2001)

by U. Lerner, E. Segal, and D. Koller


Abstract: Many real life domains contain a mixture of discrete and continuous variables and can be modeled as hybrid Bayesian Networks (BNs). An important subclass of hybrid BNs are conditional linear Gaussian (CLG) networks, where the conditional distribution of the continuous variables given an assignment to the discrete variables is a multivariate Gaussian. Lauritzen's extension to the clique tree algorithm can be used for exact inference in CLG networks. However, many domains include discrete variables that depend on continuous ones, and CLG networks do not allow such dependencies to be represented. In this paper, we propose the first "exact" inference algorithm for augmented CLG networks - CLG networks augmented by allowing discrete children of continuous parents. Our algorithm is based on Lauritzen's algorithm, and is exact in a similar sense: it computes the exact distributions over the discrete nodes, and the exact first and second moments of the continuous ones, up to inaccuracies resulting from numerical integration used within the algorithm. In the special case of softmax CPDs, we show that integration can often be done efficiently, and that using the first two moments leads to a particularly accurate approximation. We show empirically that our algorithm achieves substantially higher accuracy at lower cost than previous algorithms for this task.


Download Information

U. Lerner, E. Segal, and D. Koller (2001). "Exact Inference in Networks with Discrete Children of Continuous Parents." Seventeenth Annual Conference on Uncertainty in Artificial Intelligence (UAI). pdf ps.gz

Bibtex citation

@inproceedings{Lerner+al:UAI01,
  author =       "U. Lerner and E. Segal and D. Koller",
  booktitle =    "Seventeenth Annual Conference on Uncertainty in
                 Artificial Intelligence (UAI)",
  title =        "Exact Inference in Networks with Discrete Children of
                 Continuous Parents",
  year =         "2001",
}

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