Online learning of a Dirichlet process mixture of Beta-Liouville distributions via variational inference

IEEE Transactions on Neural Networks and Learning Systems
Wentao Fan, Nizar Bouguila

Abstract

A large class of problems can be formulated in terms of the clustering process. Mixture models are an increasingly important tool in statistical pattern recognition and for analyzing and clustering complex data. Two challenging aspects that should be addressed when considering mixture models are how to choose between a set of plausible models and how to estimate the model's parameters. In this paper, we address both problems simultaneously within a unified online nonparametric Bayesian framework that we develop to learn a Dirichlet process mixture of Beta-Liouville distributions (i.e., an infinite Beta-Liouville mixture model). The proposed infinite model is used for the online modeling and clustering of proportional data for which the Beta-Liouville mixture has been shown to be effective. We propose a principled approach for approximating the intractable model's posterior distribution by a tractable one-which we develop-such that all the involved mixture's parameters can be estimated simultaneously and effectively in a closed form. This is done through variational inference that enjoys important advantages, such as handling of unobserved attributes and preventing under or overfitting; we explain that in detail. The effectivene...Continue Reading

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