NIPS Proceedingsβ

Iterative Neural Autoregressive Distribution Estimator NADE-k

Part of: Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 27 (NIPS 2014)

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Conference Event Type: Poster


Training of the neural autoregressive density estimator (NADE) can be viewed as doing one step of probabilistic inference on missing values in data. We propose a new model that extends this inference scheme to multiple steps, arguing that it is easier to learn to improve a reconstruction in $k$ steps rather than to learn to reconstruct in a single inference step. The proposed model is an unsupervised building block for deep learning that combines the desirable properties of NADE and multi-predictive training: (1) Its test likelihood can be computed analytically, (2) it is easy to generate independent samples from it, and (3) it uses an inference engine that is a superset of variational inference for Boltzmann machines. The proposed NADE-k is competitive with the state-of-the-art in density estimation on the two datasets tested.