This book explores logical formalisms for representing and reasoning with probabilistic information that will be of particular value to researchers in nonmonotonic reasoning, applications of probabilities, and knowledge representation.
Probabilistic information has many uses in an intelligent system. This book explores logical formalisms for representing and reasoning with probabilistic information that will be of particular value to researchers in nonmonotonic reasoning, applications of probabilities, and knowledge representation. It demonstrates that probabilities are not limited to particular applications, like expert systems; they have an important role to play in the formal design and specification of intelligent systems in general. Fahiem Bacchus focuses on two distinct notions of probabilities: one propositional, involving degrees of belief, the other proportional, involving statistics. He constructs distinct logics with different semantics for each type of probability that are a significant advance in the formal tools available for representing and reasoning with probabilities. These logics can represent an extensive variety of qualitative assertions, eliminating requirements for exact point-valued probabilities, and they can represent firstorder logical information. The logics also have proof theories which give a formal specification for a class of reasoning that subsumes and integrates most of the probabilistic reasoning schemes so far developed in AI.Using the new logical tools to connect statistical with propositional probability, Bacchus also proposes a system of direct inference in which degrees of belief can be inferred from statistical knowledge and demonstrates how this mechanism can be applied to yield a powerful and intuitively satisfying system of defeasible or default reasoning.
ContentsIntroduction • Propositional Probabilities • Statistical Probabilities • Combining Statistical and Propositional Probabilities Default Inferences from Statistical Knowledge