Write a Blog >>

Workshop on probabilistic programming semantics

Probabilistic programming is the idea of expressing probabilistic models and inference methods as programs and transformations, to ease use and reuse. The recent rise of practical implementations as well as research activity in probabilistic programming has renewed the need for semantics to help us share insights and innovations.

This workshop aims to bring programming-language and machine-learning researchers together to advance the semantic foundations of probabilistic programming. Topics include but are not limited to:

  • the denotational semantics of probabilistic functions, open universe, loops, and conditioning;
  • the operational semantics of sampling, exact inference, and MCMC transitions;
  • axiomatic and equational reasoning;
  • types and polymorphism;
  • and last but not least, how semantics informs any aspect of probabilistic programming, be it design, theory, implementation, or applications.

Discussion guidelines for speakers and other participants

This workshop aims to bring programming-language and machine-learning researchers together. The accepted presentations are gathered at http://pps2016.soic.indiana.edu/. The blog format there invites everyone to ask questions and leave comments before and after the in-person workshop. Or read the abstracts and bring your questions!

To foster collaboration and establish common ground, the posters, the discussion period after each talk, and the breaks are crucial. If you are giving a talk, please abide by the time limit of 20 minutes, and consider encouraging clarification questions during your talk. Each discussion period is 10 minutes—longer than usual, because interaction is key. Please ask questions.

Because probabilistic programming is a research area that bridges multiple communities with different vocabularies, it is especially useful for everyone to ask questions like “What do you mean by X?” and “How is X useful to you?”, where X is a term that occurs in a presentation. Of course, it is also useful for presenters to explain terms proactively.

If you are in the workshop room during a talk, please give the speaker your full attention. Otherwise, please enjoy the posters and snacks in the hallway. We accepted 10 submissions as posters and 10 as talks, not on the basis of reviewer scores but based on which medium we thought would be most effective in conveying the material. So, some highly ranked submissions that are more technical in nature are accepted as posters.

Accepted extended abstracts

Title
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print
PPS
Pre-print

Call for extended abstracts

We expect this workshop to be informal, and our goal is to foster collaboration and establish common ground. Thus, the proceedings will not be a formal or archival publication, and we expect to spend only a portion of the workshop day on traditional research talks. Nevertheless, as a concrete basis for fruitful discussions, we call for extended abstracts describing specific and ideally ongoing work on probabilistic programming semantics.

Extended abstracts are up to 2 pages in PDF format. Please submit them by October 16 using EasyChair: https://easychair.org/conferences/?conf=pps2016

You're viewing the program in a time zone which is different from your device's time zone - change time zone

Sat 23 Jan
Times are displayed in time zone: Guadalajara, Mexico City, Monterrey change

09:00 - 10:00: Session 1PPS at Room St Petersburg II
Chair(s): Cameron FreerGamalon
09:00 - 09:20
Talk
PPS
Pre-print
09:20 - 09:30
Meeting
PPS
09:30 - 09:50
Talk
PPS
Jan-Willem van de MeentUniversity of Oxford, Brooks PaigeUniversity of Oxford, David TolpinUniversity of Oxford, Frank WoodUniversity of Oxford
Pre-print
09:50 - 10:00
Meeting
PPS
10:30 - 12:15: Session 2PPS at Room St Petersburg II
Chair(s): Chad ScherrerGalois, Inc.
10:30 - 10:50
Talk
PPS
Robert RandUniversity of Pennsylvania, Steve ZdancewicUniversity of Pennsylvania
Pre-print
10:50 - 11:00
Meeting
PPS
11:00 - 11:20
Talk
PPS
Avi PfefferCharles River Analytics, Brian RuttenbergCharles River Analytics
Pre-print
11:20 - 11:30
Meeting
PPS
11:30 - 12:15
Meeting
PPS
Angelika KimmigKU Leuven, Oleg Kiselyov, Jan-Willem van de MeentUniversity of Oxford, Avi PfefferCharles River Analytics, M: Frank WoodUniversity of Oxford
14:00 - 15:30: Session 3PPS at Room St Petersburg II
Chair(s): Mitchell WandNortheastern University
14:00 - 14:20
Talk
PPS
Johannes BorgströmUppsala University, Ugo Dal LagoUniversity of Bologna, Andrew D. GordonMicrosoft Research and University of Edinburgh, Marcin SzymczakUniversity of Edinburgh
Pre-print
14:20 - 14:30
Meeting
PPS
14:30 - 14:50
Talk
PPS
Leonidas LampropoulosUniversity of Pennsylvania, Benjamin C. PierceUniversity of Pennsylvania, Cătălin HriţcuINRIA Paris, John HughesChalmers University of Technology, Zoe ParaskevopoulouPrinceton University, Li-yao XiaENS Paris
Pre-print
14:50 - 15:00
Meeting
PPS
15:00 - 15:20
Talk
PPS
Sam StatonUniversity of Oxford, Hongseok YangUniversity of Oxford, UK, Chris HeunenUniversity of Edinburgh, Ohad KammarUniversity of Cambridge, Frank WoodUniversity of Oxford
Pre-print
15:20 - 15:30
Meeting
PPS
15:30 - 16:30: Poster SessionPPS at Room St Petersburg II
15:30 - 16:30
Meeting
PPS
Aleksey KligerXamarin, Inc., Sean StromstenBAE Systems, Inc.
Pre-print
15:30 - 16:30
Meeting
PPS
Theophilos GiannakopoulosBAE Systems, Inc., Mitchell WandNortheastern University, Andrew CobbNortheastern University
Pre-print
15:30 - 16:30
Meeting
PPS
Larry MossIndiana University, Chung-chieh ShanIndiana University, Alexandra SilvaRadboud University Nijmegen
Pre-print
15:30 - 16:30
Meeting
PPS
Faris Abou-SalehUniversity of Oxford, Kwok-Ho CheungUniversity of Oxford, Jeremy GibbonsUniversity of Oxford, UK
Pre-print
15:30 - 16:30
Meeting
PPS
Johannes HölzlTechnische Universität München
Pre-print
15:30 - 16:30
Meeting
PPS
Yohei MiyamotoGraduate School of Informatics, Kyoto University, Kohei Suenaga, Koji NakazawaGraduate School of Information Science, Nagoya University
Pre-print
15:30 - 16:30
Meeting
PPS
Ryan CulpepperNortheastern University
Pre-print
15:30 - 16:30
Meeting
PPS
Pre-print
15:30 - 16:30
Meeting
PPS
Adam ŚcibiorUniversity of Cambridge, Andrew D. GordonMicrosoft Research and University of Edinburgh
Pre-print
15:30 - 16:30
Meeting
PPS
Adam ŚcibiorUniversity of Cambridge, Bernhard SchölkopfMPI Tuebingen
Pre-print
16:30 - 18:00: Session 5PPS at Room St Petersburg II
Chair(s): Chung-chieh ShanIndiana University
16:30 - 16:50
Talk
PPS
Nathanael L. AckermanHarvard University, Cameron FreerGamalon, Daniel RoyUniversity of Toronto
Pre-print
16:50 - 17:00
Meeting
PPS
17:00 - 17:20
Talk
PPS
Daniel HuangHarvard University, Greg MorrisettCornell University
Pre-print
17:20 - 17:30
Meeting
PPS
17:30 - 17:50
Talk
PPS
Friedrich GretzRWTH Aachen University, Nils JansenRWTH Aachen University, Benjamin Lucien KaminskiRWTH Aachen University, Joost-Pieter KatoenRWTH Aachen University, Federico OlmedoRWTH Aachen University
Pre-print
17:50 - 18:00
Meeting
PPS