The Paper Feed
A feed of Bayesian network related papers, articles, books and research that we happen across and find of interest
Evaluating the Weighted Sum Algorithm for Estimating Conditional Probabilities in Bayesian Networks
The primary challenge in constructing a Bayesian Network (BN) is acquiring its Conditional Probability Tables (CPTs). CPTs can be elicited from domain experts; however, they scale exponentially in size, thus making their elicitation very time consuming and costly. Das  proposed a solution to this problem using the weighted sum algorithm (WSA). In this paper we present two empirical studies that evaluates the WSA's efficiency and accuracy, we also describe an extension for the algorithm to deal with one of its shortcomings. Our results show that the estimates obtained using the WSA were highly accurate and make significant reductions in elicitation.
Improving the analysis of dependable systems by mapping fault trees into Bayesian networks
Bayesian Networks (BN) provide a robust probabilistic method of reasoning under uncertainty. They have been successfully applied in a variety of real-world tasks but they have received little attention in the area of dependability. The present paper is aimed at exploring the capabilities of the BN formalism in the analysis of dependable systems. To this end, the paper compares BN with one of the most popular techniques for dependability analysis of large, safety critical systems, namely Fault Trees (FT). The paper shows that any FT can be directly mapped into a BN and that basic inference techniques on the latter may be used to obtain classical parameters computed from the former (i.e. reliability of the Top Event or of any sub-system, criticality of components, etc). Moreover, by using BN, some additional power can be obtained, both at the modeling and at the analysis level. At the modeling level, several restrictive assumptions implicit in the FT methodology can be removed and various kinds of dependencies among components can be accommodated. At the analysis level, a general diagnostic analysis can be performed. The comparison of the two methodologies is carried out by means of a running example, taken from the literature, that consists of a redundant multiprocessor system.
An explication of uncertain evidence in Bayesian networks: likelihood evidence and probabilistic evidence
This paper proposes a systematized presentation and a terminology for observations in a Bayesian network. It focuses on the three main concepts of uncertain evidence, namely likelihood evidence and fixed and not-fixed probabilistic evidence, using a review of previous literature. A probabilistic finding on a variable is specified by a local probability distribution and replaces any former belief in that variable. It is said to be fixed or not fixed regarding whether it has to be kept unchanged or not after the arrival of observation on other variables. Fixed probabilistic evidence is defined by Valtorta et al. (J Approx Reason 29(1):71–106 2002) under the name soft evidence, whereas the concept of not-fixed probabilistic evidence has been discussed by Chan and Darwiche (Artif Intell 163(1):67–90 2005). Both concepts have to be clearly distinguished from likelihood evidence defined by Pearl (1988), also called virtual evidence, for which evidence is specified as a likelihood ratio, that often represents the unreliability of the evidence. Since these three concepts of uncertain evidence are not widely understood, and the terms used to describe these concepts are not well established, most Bayesian networks engines do not offer well defined propagation functions to handle them. Firstly, we present a review of uncertain evidence and the proposed terminology, definitions and concepts related to the use of uncertain evidence in Bayesian networks. Then we describe updating algorithms for the propagation of uncertain evidence. Finally, we propose several results where the use of fixed or not-fixed probabilistic evidence is required.