 Award ID(s):
 1657613
 NSFPAR ID:
 10053971
 Date Published:
 Journal Name:
 Proceedings of the 23rd International Conference on Principles and Practice of Constraint Programming (CP)
 Format(s):
 Medium: X
 Sponsoring Org:
 National Science Foundation
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Summary Prior information often takes the form of parameter constraints. Bayesian methods include such information through prior distributions having constrained support. By using posterior sampling algorithms, one can quantify uncertainty without relying on asymptotic approximations. However, sharply constrained priors are not necessary in some settings and tend to limit modelling scope to a narrow set of distributions that are tractable computationally. We propose to replace the sharp indicator function of the constraint with an exponential kernel, thereby creating a closetoconstrained neighbourhood within the Euclidean space in which the constrained subspace is embedded. This kernel decays with distance from the constrained space at a rate depending on a relaxation hyperparameter. By avoiding the sharp constraint, we enable use of offtheshelf posterior sampling algorithms, such as Hamiltonian Monte Carlo, facilitating automatic computation in a broad range of models. We study the constrained and relaxed distributions under multiple settings and theoretically quantify their differences. Application of the method is illustrated through several novel modelling examples.

Interpretations of logical formulas over semirings (other than the Boolean semiring) have applications in various areas of computer science including logic, AI, databases, and security. Such interpretations provide richer information beyond the truth or falsity of a statement. Examples of such semirings include Viterbi semiring, minmax or access control semiring, tropical semiring, and fuzzy semiring. The present work investigates the complexity of constraint optimization problems over semirings. The generic optimization problem we study is the following: Given a propositional formula phi over n variable and a semiring (K,+, . ,0,1), find the maximum value over all possible interpretations of phi over K. This can be seen as a generalization of the wellknown satisfiability problem (a propositional formula is satisfiable if and only if the maximum value over all interpretations/assignments over the Boolean semiring is 1). A related problem is to find an interpretation that achieves the maximum value. In this work, we first focus on these optimization problems over the Viterbi semiring, which we call optConfVal and optConf. We first show that for general propositional formulas in negation normal form, optConfVal and optConf are in FP^NP. We then investigate optConf when the input formula phi is represented in the conjunctive normal form. For CNF formulae, we first derive an upper bound on the value of optConf as a function of the number of maximum satisfiable clauses. In particular, we show that if r is the maximum number of satisfiable clauses in a CNF formula with m clauses, then its optConf value is at most 1/4^(mr). Building on this we establish that optConf for CNF formulae is hard for the complexity class FP^NP[log]. We also design polynomialtime approximation algorithms and establish an inapproximability for optConfVal. We establish similar complexity results for these optimization problems over other semirings including tropical, fuzzy, and access control semirings.more » « less

Williams Brian ; Chen Yiling ; Neville Jennifer (Ed.)Interpretations of logical formulas over semirings (other than the Boolean semiring) have applications in various areas of computer science including logic, AI, databases, and security. Such interpretations provide richer information beyond the truth or falsity of a statement. Examples of such semirings include Viterbi semiring, minmax or access control semiring, tropical semiring, and fuzzy semiring. The present work investigates the complexity of constraint optimization problems over semirings. The generic optimization problem we study is the following: Given a propositional formula $\varphi$ over $n$ variable and a semiring $(K,+,\cdot,0,1)$, find the maximum value over all possible interpretations of $\varphi$ over $K$. This can be seen as a generalization of the wellknown satisfiability problem (a propositional formula is satisfiable if and only if the maximum value over all interpretations/assignments over the Boolean semiring is 1). A related problem is to find an interpretation that achieves the maximum value. In this work, we first focus on these optimization problems over the Viterbi semiring, which we call \optrustval\ and \optrust. We first show that for general propositional formulas in negation normal form, \optrustval\ and {\optrust} are in ${\mathrm{FP}}^{\mathrm{NP}}$. We then investigate {\optrust} when the input formula $\varphi$ is represented in the conjunctive normal form. For CNF formulae, we first derive an upper bound on the value of {\optrust} as a function of the number of maximum satisfiable clauses. In particular, we show that if $r$ is the maximum number of satisfiable clauses in a CNF formula with $m$ clauses, then its $\optrust$ value is at most $1/4^{mr}$. Building on this we establish that {\optrust} for CNF formulae is hard for the complexity class ${\mathrm{FP}}^{\mathrm{NP}[\log]}$. We also design polynomialtime approximation algorithms and establish an inapproximability for {\optrustval}. We establish similar complexity results for these optimization problems over other semirings including tropical, fuzzy, and access control semirings.more » « less