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CS-295 Reasoning and Modeling with Graphical Models: Sampling and Parallel computation, Spring 2008


  • Classroom: DBH 1423
  • Day: Tuesday
  • Time: 2:00 - 4:20pm
  • Instructor: Rina Dechter - dechter@ics.uci.edu

The seminar will focus on recent advances in graphical models reasoning and knowledge representation, as well as on exploring some application areas.
The focus this year is on Sampling and parallel computation:

  1. Sampling and its application to graphical model. We will cover chapters from the book Monte Carlo Strategies in Scientific Computing by J. S. Liu. Elizabeth Thompson's tutorial and relevant recent papers on sampling for graphical models.
  2. Parallelizing graphical models algorithms. We will delve into parallel computation principles and their potential for exact and approximate reasoning. We will look into two frameworks.
    • The first is the parallel model used by the genetic linkage tool of Superlink online.
    • The parallel PRAM machine developed at university of Maryland and explore the feasibility of programming NP-complete tasks such as constraint satisfaction and satisfiability. See http://www.umiacs.umd.edu/users/vishkin/index.html
  3. We will continue to look at applications from bioinformatics such as linkage analysis.
Each student will be involved in presenting papers/chapters and will be encouraged to focus on a project of interest. Students will write a final report for their research project.


Week           Date Topic Readings
Week 1 4/1
  • Importance Sampling, Sequential Monte Carlo and its advances. Slides
Liu's book,  Chapters 2 and 3.
Week 2 4/8
  • Markov Chain Monte Carlo theory and Gibbs Sampling. Slides
Liu's book, Chapter 12 and 6.
Week 3 4/15
  • Parallel Architectures and Applications to Bayesian Networks. Slides
Paper by X. Wen and U. Vishkin
Week 4
  • Efficient Computation of Sum-Products on GPUs Slides
Paper by M. Silberstein et al.
Week 5 4/29
Week 6  5/6
Week 7 5/13
Week 8 5/20
  • Montanari's 1971 paper: On the Optimal Approximation of Discrete Functions with Low-dimensional Tables Slides

Week 9
  • TBA

Week 10
  • TBA