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Parallel Approaches to Accelerate Bayesian Decision Trees

by   Efthyvoulos Drousiotis, et al.
University of Liverpool

Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) is a well-established family of algorithms primarily used in Bayesian statistics to sample from a target distribution when direct sampling is challenging. Existing work on Bayesian decision trees uses MCMC. Unfortunately, this can be slow, especially when considering large volumes of data. It is hard to parallelise the accept-reject component of the MCMC. None-the-less, we propose two methods for exploiting parallelism in the MCMC: in the first, we replace the MCMC with another numerical Bayesian approach, the Sequential Monte Carlo (SMC) sampler, which has the appealing property that it is an inherently parallel algorithm; in the second, we consider data partitioning. Both methods use multi-core processing with a HighPerformance Computing (HPC) resource. We test the two methods in various study settings to determine which method is the most beneficial for each test case. Experiments show that data partitioning has limited utility in the settings we consider and that the use of the SMC sampler can improve run-time (compared to the sequential implementation) by up to a factor of 343.


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