Saul: Towards declarative learning based programming

Parisa Kordjamshidi, Dan Roth, Hao Wu

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

We present Saul, a new probabilistic programming language designed to address some of the shortcomings of programming languages that aim at advancing and simplifying the development of AI systems. Such languages need to interact with messy, naturally occurring data, to allow a programmer to specify what needs to be done at an appropriate level of abstraction rather than at the data level, to be developed on a solid theory that supports moving to and reasoning at this level of abstraction and, finally, to support flexible integration of these learning and inference models within an application program. Saul is an object-functional programming language written in Scala that facilitates these by (1) allowing a programmer to learn, name and manipulate named abstractions over relational data; (2) supporting seamless incorporation of trainable (probabilistic or discriminative) components into the program, and (3) providing a level of inference over trainable models to support composition and make decisions that respect domain and application constraints. Saul is developed over a declaratively defined relational data model, can use piecewise learned factor graphs with declaratively specified learning and inference objectives, and it supports inference over probabilistic models augmented with declarative knowledge-based constraints. We describe the key constructs of Saul and exemplify its use in developing applications that require relational feature engineering and structured output prediction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationIJCAI 2015 - Proceedings of the 24th International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence
EditorsMichael Wooldridge, Qiang Yang
PublisherInternational Joint Conferences on Artificial Intelligence
Pages1844-1851
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781577357384
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015
Event24th International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence, IJCAI 2015 - Buenos Aires, Argentina
Duration: Jul 25 2015Jul 31 2015

Publication series

NameIJCAI International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence
Volume2015-January
ISSN (Print)1045-0823

Other

Other24th International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence, IJCAI 2015
CountryArgentina
CityBuenos Aires
Period7/25/157/31/15

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Artificial Intelligence

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