Lifted Hybrid Variational Inference
Proceedings of the Twenty-Ninth International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence
Main track. Pages 4237-4244. https://doi.org/10.24963/ijcai.2020/585
Lifted inference algorithms exploit model symmetry to reduce computational cost in probabilistic inference. However, most existing lifted inference algorithms operate only over discrete domains or continuous domains with restricted potential functions. We investigate two approximate lifted variational approaches that apply to domains with general hybrid potentials, and are expressive enough to capture multi-modality. We demonstrate that the proposed variational methods are highly scalable and can exploit approximate model symmetries even in the presence of a large amount of continuous evidence, outperforming existing message-passing-based approaches in a variety of settings. Additionally, we present a sufficient condition for the Bethe variational approximation to yield a non-trivial estimate over the marginal polytope.
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