Towards Practical Bayesian Parameter and State Estimation

03/29/2016 ∙ by Yusuf Bugra Erol, et al. ∙ 0

Joint state and parameter estimation is a core problem for dynamic Bayesian networks. Although modern probabilistic inference toolkits make it relatively easy to specify large and practically relevant probabilistic models, the silver bullet---an efficient and general online inference algorithm for such problems---remains elusive, forcing users to write special-purpose code for each application. We propose a novel blackbox algorithm -- a hybrid of particle filtering for state variables and assumed density filtering for parameter variables. It has following advantages: (a) it is efficient due to its online nature, and (b) it is applicable to both discrete and continuous parameter spaces . On a variety of toy and real models, our system is able to generate more accurate results within a fixed computation budget. This preliminary evidence indicates that the proposed approach is likely to be of practical use.

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