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63
Stochastic Constraint Programming
, 2000
"... To model decision problems involving uncertainty and probability, we propose stochastic constraint programming. Stochastic constraint programs contain both decision variables (which we can set) and stochastic variables (which follow some probability distribution), and combine together the best ..."
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Cited by 73 (7 self)
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To model decision problems involving uncertainty and probability, we propose stochastic constraint programming. Stochastic constraint programs contain both decision variables (which we can set) and stochastic variables (which follow some probability distribution), and combine together the best features of traditional constraint satisfaction, stochastic integer programming, and stochastic satisfiability. We give a semantics for stochastic constraint programs, and propose a number of complete algorithms and approximation procedures. Using these algorithms, we observe phase transition behavior in stochastic constraint programs. Interestingly, the cost of both optimization and satisfaction peaks in the satisfaction phase boundary. Finally, we discuss a number of extensions of stochastic constraint programming to relax various assumptions like the independence between stochastic variables. Introduction Many real world decision problems contain uncertainty. Data about event...
Satisfiability Solvers
, 2008
"... The past few years have seen an enormous progress in the performance of Boolean satisfiability (SAT) solvers. Despite the worstcase exponential run time of all known algorithms, satisfiability solvers are increasingly leaving their mark as a generalpurpose tool in areas as diverse as software and h ..."
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Cited by 47 (0 self)
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The past few years have seen an enormous progress in the performance of Boolean satisfiability (SAT) solvers. Despite the worstcase exponential run time of all known algorithms, satisfiability solvers are increasingly leaving their mark as a generalpurpose tool in areas as diverse as software and hardware verification [29–31, 228], automatic test pattern generation [138, 221], planning [129, 197], scheduling [103], and even challenging problems from algebra [238]. Annual SAT competitions have led to the development of dozens of clever implementations of such solvers [e.g. 13,
MAP Complexity Results and Approximation Methods
 IN PROCEEDINGS OF THE 18TH CONFERENCE ON UNCERTAINTY IN ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (UAI
, 2002
"... MAP is the problem of finding a most probable instantiation of a set of variables in a Bayesian network, given some evidence. MAP appears ..."
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Cited by 45 (2 self)
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MAP is the problem of finding a most probable instantiation of a set of variables in a Bayesian network, given some evidence. MAP appears
Towards efficient sampling: Exploiting random walk strategies
 In Proceedings of the AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence
, 2004
"... From a computational perspective, there is a close connection between various probabilistic reasoning tasks and the problem of counting or sampling satisfying assignments of a propositional theory. We consider the question of whether stateoftheart satisfiability procedures, based on random walk ..."
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Cited by 45 (6 self)
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From a computational perspective, there is a close connection between various probabilistic reasoning tasks and the problem of counting or sampling satisfying assignments of a propositional theory. We consider the question of whether stateoftheart satisfiability procedures, based on random walk strategies, can be used to sample uniformly or nearuniformly from the space of satisfying assignments. We first show that random walk SAT procedures often do reach the full set of solutions of complex logical theories. Moreover, by interleaving random walk steps with Metropolis transitions, we also show how the sampling becomes nearuniform.
Model counting: A new strategy for obtaining good bounds
 In 21st AAAI
, 2006
"... Model counting is the classical problem of computing the number of solutions of a given propositional formula. It vastly generalizes the NPcomplete problem of propositional satisfiability, and hence is both highly useful and extremely expensive to solve in practice. We present a new approach to mod ..."
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Cited by 44 (16 self)
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Model counting is the classical problem of computing the number of solutions of a given propositional formula. It vastly generalizes the NPcomplete problem of propositional satisfiability, and hence is both highly useful and extremely expensive to solve in practice. We present a new approach to model counting that is based on adding a carefully chosen number of socalled streamlining constraints to the input formula in order to cut down the size of its solution space in a controlled manner. Each of the additional constraints is a randomly chosen XOR or parity constraint on the problem variables, represented either directly or in the standard CNF form. Inspired by a related yet quite different theoretical study of the properties of XOR constraints, we provide a formal proof that with high probability, the number of XOR constraints added in order to bring the formula to the boundary of being unsatisfiable determines with high precision its model count. Experimentally, we demonstrate that this approach can be used to obtain good bounds on the model counts for formulas that are far beyond the reach of exact counting methods. In fact, we obtain the first nontrivial solution counts for very hard, highly structured combinatorial problem instances. Note that unlike other counting techniques, such as Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods, we are able to provide highconfidence guarantees on the quality of the counts obtained.
Complexity results and approximation strategies for map explanations
 Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research
, 2004
"... MAP is the problem of finding a most probable instantiation of a set of variables given evidence. MAP has always been perceived to be significantly harder than the related problems of computing the probability of a variable instantiation (Pr), or the problem of computing the most probable explanatio ..."
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Cited by 42 (3 self)
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MAP is the problem of finding a most probable instantiation of a set of variables given evidence. MAP has always been perceived to be significantly harder than the related problems of computing the probability of a variable instantiation (Pr), or the problem of computing the most probable explanation (MPE). This paper investigates the complexity of MAP in Bayesian networks. Specifically, we show that MAP is complete for NP PP and provide further negative complexity results for algorithms based on variable elimination. We also show that MAP remains hard even when MPE and Pr become easy. For example, we show that MAP is NPcomplete when the networks are restricted to polytrees, and even then can not be effectively approximated. Given the difficulty of computing MAP exactly, and the difficulty of approximating MAP while providing useful guarantees on the resulting approximation, we investigate best effort approximations. We introduce a generic MAP approximation framework. We provide two instantiations of the framework; one for networks which are amenable to exact inference (Pr), and one for networks for which even exact inference is too hard. This allows MAP approximation on networks that are too complex to even exactly solve the easier problems, Pr and MPE. Experimental results indicate that using these approximation algorithms provides much better solutions than standard techniques, and provide accurate MAP estimates in many cases. 1.
From sampling to model counting
 In Proc. IJCAI’07
, 2007
"... We introduce a new technique for counting models of Boolean satisfiability problems. Our approach incorporates information obtained from sampling the solution space. Unlike previous approaches, our method does not require uniform or nearuniform samples. It instead converts local search sampling wit ..."
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Cited by 37 (8 self)
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We introduce a new technique for counting models of Boolean satisfiability problems. Our approach incorporates information obtained from sampling the solution space. Unlike previous approaches, our method does not require uniform or nearuniform samples. It instead converts local search sampling without any guarantees into very good bounds on the model count with guarantees. We give a formal analysis and provide experimental results showing the effectiveness of our approach. 1
The inferential complexity of Bayesian and credal networks
 In Proceedings of the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence
, 2005
"... This paper presents new results on the complexity of graphtheoretical models that represent probabilities (Bayesian networks) and that represent interval and set valued probabilities (credal networks). We define a new class of networks with bounded width, and introduce a new decision problem for Ba ..."
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Cited by 35 (9 self)
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This paper presents new results on the complexity of graphtheoretical models that represent probabilities (Bayesian networks) and that represent interval and set valued probabilities (credal networks). We define a new class of networks with bounded width, and introduce a new decision problem for Bayesian networks, the maximin a posteriori. We present new links between the Bayesian and credal networks, and present new results both for Bayesian networks (most probable explanation with observations, maximin a posteriori) and for credal networks (bounds on probabilities a posteriori, most probable explanation with and without observations, maximum a posteriori). 1
Constraint Solving in Uncertain and Dynamic Environments: A Survey
 Constraints
, 2005
"... Abstract. This article follows a tutorial, given by the authors on dynamic constraint solving at CP 2003 [87]. It aims at offering an overview of the main approaches and techniques that have been proposed in the domain of constraint satisfaction to deal with uncertain and dynamic environments. Keywo ..."
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Cited by 32 (4 self)
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Abstract. This article follows a tutorial, given by the authors on dynamic constraint solving at CP 2003 [87]. It aims at offering an overview of the main approaches and techniques that have been proposed in the domain of constraint satisfaction to deal with uncertain and dynamic environments. Keywords: constraint satisfaction problem, uncertainty, change, stability, robustness, flexibility
Nearuniform sampling of combinatorial spaces using xor constraints
 In NIPS. 2007
"... We propose a new technique for sampling the solutions of combinatorial problems in a nearuniform manner. We focus on problems specified as a Boolean formula, i.e., on SAT instances. Sampling for SAT problems has been shown to have interesting connections with probabilistic reasoning, making practic ..."
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Cited by 29 (5 self)
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We propose a new technique for sampling the solutions of combinatorial problems in a nearuniform manner. We focus on problems specified as a Boolean formula, i.e., on SAT instances. Sampling for SAT problems has been shown to have interesting connections with probabilistic reasoning, making practical sampling algorithms for SAT highly desirable. The best current approaches are based on Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods, which have some practical limitations. Our approach exploits combinatorial properties of random parity (XOR) constraints to prune away solutions nearuniformly. The final sample is identified amongst the remaining ones using a stateoftheart SAT solver. The resulting sampling distribution is provably arbitrarily close to uniform. Our experiments show that our technique achieves a significantly better sampling quality than the best alternative. 1