Residual Splash for Optimally Parallelizing Belief Propagation

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Joseph Gonzalez, Yucheng Low, Carlos Guestrin ;
Proceedings of the Twelth International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Statistics, PMLR 5:177-184, 2009.

Abstract

As computer architectures move towards parallelism we must build a new theoretical understanding of parallelism in machine learning. In this paper we focus on parallelizing message passing inference algorithms in graphical models. We develop a theoretical understanding of the limitations of parallelism in belief propagation and bound the optimal achievable running parallel performance on a certain class of graphical models. We demonstrate that the fully synchronous parallelization of belief propagation is highly inefficient. We provide a new parallel belief propagation which achieves optimal performance on a certain class of graphical models. Using two challenging real-world problems, we empirically evaluate the performance of our algorithm. On the real-world problems, we find that our new algorithm achieves near linear performance improvements and out performs alternative parallel belief propagation algorithms.

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