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  1. Abstract

    We propose a new probabilistic programming language for the design and analysis of cyber-physical systems, especially those based on machine learning. We consider several problems arising in the design process, including training a system to be robust to rare events, testing its performance under different conditions, and debugging failures. We show how a probabilistic programming language can help address these problems by specifying distributions encoding interesting types of inputs, then sampling these to generate specialized training and test data. More generally, such languages can be used to write environment models, an essential prerequisite to any formal analysis. In this paper, we focus on systems such as autonomous cars and robots, whose environment at any point in time is ascene, a configuration of physical objects and agents. We design a domain-specific language,Scenic, for describingscenariosthat are distributions over scenes and the behaviors of their agents over time.Sceniccombines concise, readable syntax for spatiotemporal relationships with the ability to declaratively impose hard and soft constraints over the scenario. We develop specialized techniques for sampling from the resulting distribution, taking advantage of the structure provided byScenic’s domain-specific syntax. Finally, we applyScenicin multiple case studies for training, testing, and debugging neural networks for perception both as standalone components and within the context of a full cyber-physical system.

     
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  3. We propose a new probabilistic programming language for the design and analysis of perception systems, especially those based on machine learning. Specifically, we consider the problems of training a perception system to handle rare events, testing its performance under different conditions, and debugging failures. We show how a probabilistic programming language can help address these problems by specifying distributions encoding interesting types of inputs and sampling these to generate specialized training and test sets. More generally, such languages can be used for cyber-physical systems and robotics to write environment models, an essential prerequisite to any formal analysis. In this paper, we focus on systems like autonomous cars and robots, whose environment is a scene, a configuration of physical objects and agents. We design a domain-specific language, Scenic, for describing scenarios that are distributions over scenes. As a probabilistic programming language, Scenic allows assigning distributions to features of the scene, as well as declaratively imposing hard and soft constraints over the scene. We develop specialized techniques for sampling from the resulting distribution, taking advantage of the structure provided by Scenic's domain-specific syntax. Finally, we apply Scenic in a case study on a convolutional neural network designed to detect cars in road images, improving its performance beyond that achieved by state-of-the-art synthetic data generation methods. 
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  4. We present a novel framework for augmenting data sets for machine learning based on counterexamples. Counterexamples are misclassified examples that have important properties for retraining and improving the model. Key components of our framework include a counterexample generator, which produces data items that are misclassified by the model and error tables, a novel data structure that stores information pertaining to misclassifications. Error tables can be used to explain the model's vulnerabilities and are used to efficiently generate counterexamples for augmentation. We show the efficacy of the proposed framework by comparing it to classical augmentation techniques on a case study of object detection in autonomous driving based on deep neural networks. 
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