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Active Learning of Spin Network Models

by   Jialong Jiang, et al.
California Institute of Technology

Complex networks can be modeled as a probabilistic graphical model, where the interactions between binary variables, "spins", on nodes are described by a coupling matrix that is inferred from observations. The inverse statistical problem of finding direct interactions is difficult, especially for large systems, because of the exponential growth in the possible number of states and the possible number of networks. In the context of the experimental sciences, well-controlled perturbations can be applied to a system, shedding light on the internal structure of the network. Therefore, we propose a method to improve the accuracy and efficiency of inference by iteratively applying perturbations to a network that are advantageous under a Bayesian framework. The spectrum of the empirical Fisher information can be used as a measure for the difficulty of the inference during the training process. We significantly improve the accuracy and efficiency of inference in medium-sized networks based on this strategy with a reasonable number of experimental queries. Our method could be powerful in the analysis of complex networks as well as in the rational design of experiments.


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