A Programming Paradigm for


Abstract: Inductive programming is a new machine learning paradigm which combines functional programming for writing statistical models and information theory to prevent overfitting. Typeclasses specify general properties that models must have. Many statistical models, estimators and operators have polymorphic types. Useful operators combine models, and estimators, to form new ones; Functional programming's compositional style of programming is a great advantage in this domain. Complementing this, information theory provides a compositional measure of the complexity of a model from its parts.
Inductive programming is illustrated by a case study of Bayesian networks. Networks are built from classification (decision) trees. Trees are built from partitioning functions and models on dataspaces. Trees, and hence networks, are general as a natural consequence of the method. Discrete and continuous variables, and missing values are handled by the networks. Finally the Bayesian networks are applied to a challenging data set on lost persons. Keywords: inductive inference, functional programming, Haskell, minimum length encoding, statistical models, Bayesian networks. [Paper.pdf], [Paper.ps] or [Paper.pdf]['06]. Also see [JFP05]. 

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