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Title: Bayesian time series learning with Gaussian processes
Author: Frigola-Alcalde, Roger
ISNI:       0000 0004 6058 8192
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2015
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The analysis of time series data is important in fields as disparate as the social sciences, biology, engineering or econometrics. In this dissertation, we present a number of algorithms designed to learn Bayesian nonparametric models of time series. The goal of these kinds of models is twofold. First, they aim at making predictions which quantify the uncertainty due to limitations in the quantity and the quality of the data. Second, they are flexible enough to model highly complex data whilst preventing overfitting when the data does not warrant complex models. We begin with a unifying literature review on time series models based on Gaussian processes. Then, we centre our attention on the Gaussian Process State-Space Model (GP-SSM): a Bayesian nonparametric generalisation of discrete-time nonlinear state-space models. We present a novel formulation of the GP-SSM that offers new insights into its properties. We then proceed to exploit those insights by developing new learning algorithms for the GP-SSM based on particle Markov chain Monte Carlo and variational inference. Finally, we present a filtered nonlinear auto-regressive model with a simple, robust and fast learning algorithm that makes it well suited to its application by non-experts on large datasets. Its main advantage is that it avoids the computationally expensive (and potentially difficult to tune) smoothing step that is a key part of learning nonlinear state-space models.
Supervisor: Rasmussen, Carl Edward Sponsor: EPSRC
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: time series ; Gaussian processes ; Bayesian ; Bayesian statistics ; machine learning ; artificial intelligence ; Bayesian nonparametrics ; GP-SSM ; Gaussian Process State-Space Model ; statistics ; computational statistics