## A family of algorithms for approximate Bayesian inference (2001)

### BibTeX

@MISC{Picard01afamily,

author = {Rosalind Picard and Thomas P. Minka and Thomas P Minka},

title = {A family of algorithms for approximate Bayesian inference},

year = {2001}

}

### OpenURL

### Abstract

One of the major obstacles to using Bayesian methods for pattern recognition has been its computational expense. This thesis presents an approximation technique that can perform Bayesian inference faster and more accurately than previously possible. This method, "Expectation Propagation," unifies and generalizes two previous techniques: assumeddensity filtering, an extension of the Kalman filter, and loopy belief propagation, an extension of belief propagation in Bayesian networks. The unification shows how both of these algorithms can be viewed as approximating the true posterior distribution with a simpler distribution, which is close in the sense of KL-divergence. Expectation Propagation exploits the best of both algorithms: the generality of assumed-density filtering and the accuracy of loopy belief propagation. Loopy belief propagation, because it propagates exact belief states, is useful for limited types of belief networks, such as purely discrete networks. Expectation Propagati...