[AI Seminar] AI Seminar -- Professor Rina Dechter -- April 26, 2016

Ellen Vitercik vitercik at cs.cmu.edu
Wed Apr 20 13:44:12 EDT 2016

Dear faculty and students,

We look forward to seeing you this Tuesday, April 26th, at noon in NSH 3305
for AI Seminar. To learn more about the seminar and lunch, or to volunteer
to give a talk, please visit the AI Lunch webpage
<http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~aiseminar/>. *We are looking for someone to give a
talk on May 10th*.

UC Irvine Professor Rina Dechter <http://www.ics.uci.edu/~dechter/> will
give a talk titled "Modern Exact and Approximate Combinatorial Optimization
Algorithms (max-product and max-sum-product) for Graphical models."

*Abstract: *In this talk I will present several principles behind state of
the art algorithms for solving combinatorial optimization tasks defined
over graphical models (Bayesian networks, Markov networks, constraint
networks, Influence diagrams) and demonstrate their performance on some

Specifically I will present branch and bound search algorithms which
explore the AND/OR search space over graphical models and thus exploit
problem's decomposition (using AND nodes), equivalence (by caching) and
pruning irrelevant subspaces via the power of bounding heuristics. In
particular I will show how the two ideas of mini-bucket partitioning which
relaxes the input problem using node duplication only, combined with linear
programming relaxations ideas which optimize
cost-shifting/re-parameterization schemes, can yield tight bounding
heuristic information within systematic, anytime, search. I will then show
our recent extension to solving the far more challenging task of Marginal
Map (as time permits).

Notably, a solver for finding the most probable explanation (MPE or MAP),
embedding these principles has won first place in all time categories in
the 2012 PASCAL2 approximate inference challenge, and first or second place
in the UAI-2014 competitions.

Parts of this work were done jointly with: Radu Marinescu, Kalev Kask, Alex
Ihler, Robesrt Mateescu and Lars Otten.

*Bio:* Rina Dechter is a professor of Computer Science at the University of
California, Irvine. She received her PhD in Computer Science at UCLA in
1985, an MS degree in Applied Mathematics from the Weizmann Institute and a
B.S in Mathematics and Statistics from the Hebrew University, Jerusalem.
Her research centers on computational aspects of automated reasoning and
knowledge representation including search, constraint processing and
probabilistic reasoning.

Professor Dechter is an author of 'Constraint Processing' published by
Morgan Kaufmann, 2003, and 'Reasoning with Probabilistic and Deterministic
Graphical Models: Exact Algorithms' by Morgan and Claypool publishers,
2013, has co-authored over 150 research papers, and has served on the
editorial boards of: Artificial Intelligence, the Constraint Journal,
Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research, Logical Methods in Computer
Science (LMCS) and journal of Machine Learning (JLMR). She was awarded the
Presidential Young investigator award in 1991, is a fellow of the American
association of Artificial Intelligence since 1994, was a Radcliffe
Fellowship 2005-2006, received the 2007 Association of Constraint
Programming (ACP) research excellence award and is a 2013 Fellow of the
ACM. She has been Co-Editor-in-Chief of Artificial Intelligence, since 2011.


Ellen and Ariel
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