[Invited Talk] Unifying Logic and Probability: The BLOG language

Presenter: Stuart Russell, UC Berkeley; Time: 5:00pm, Friday (2017/10/20); Location: Building 301 Room 102

Abstract

Logic and probability are ancient subjects whose unification holds significant potential for the field of artificial intelligence. The BLOG (Bayesian LOGic) language provides a way to write probability models using syntactic and semantic devices from first-order logic. In modern parlance, it is a relational, open-universe probabilistic programming language that allows one to define probability distributions over the entire space of first-order model structures that can be constructed given the constant, function, and predicate symbols of the program. I will describe the language mainly through examples and cover its application to monitoring the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty.

Biography

Stuart Russell received his B.A. with first-class honours in physics from Oxford University in 1982 and his Ph.D. in computer science from Stanford in 1986. He then joined the faculty of the University of California at Berkeley, where he is Professor (and formerly Chair) of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences and holder of the Smith-Zadeh Chair in Engineering. He has served as an Adjunct Professor of Neurological Surgery at UC San Francisco and as Vice-Chair of the World Economic Forum's Council on AI and
Robotics. He is a recipient of the Presidential Young Investigator Award of the National Science Foundation, the IJCAI Computers and Thought Award, the World Technology Award (Policy category), the Mitchell Prize of the American Statistical Association, and Outstanding Educator Awards from both ACM and AAAI. From 2012 to 2014 he held the Chaire Blaise Pascal in Paris. He is a Fellow of the American Association for Artificial Intelligence, the Association for Computing Machinery, and the American Association for
the Advancement of Science. His book "Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach" (with Peter Norvig) is the standard text in AI; it has been translated into 13 languages and is used in over 1300 universities in 118 countries. His research covers a wide range of topics in artificial intelligence including machine learning, probabilistic reasoning, knowledge representation, planning, real-time decision making, multitarget tracking, computer vision, computational physiology, and philosophical foundations. He also works for the United Nations, developing a new global seismic monitoring system for the nuclear-test-ban treaty. His current concerns include the threat of autonomous weapons and the long-term future of artificial intelligence and its relation to humanity.