Convolved Gaussian Process Priors for multivariate regression with applications to Dynamical Systems

Student thesis: Phd


In this thesis we address the problem of modeling correlated outputs using Gaussian process priors. Applications of modeling correlated outputs include the joint prediction of pollutant metals in geostatistics and multitask learning in machine learning. Defining a Gaussian process prior for correlated outputs translates into specifying a suitable covariance function that captures dependencies between the different output variables. Classical models for obtaining such a covariance function include the linear model of coregionalization and process convolutions. We propose a general framework for developing multiple output covariance functions by performing convolutions between smoothing kernels particular to each output and covariance functions that are common to all outputs. Both the linear model of coregionalization and the process convolutions turn out to be special cases of this framework. Practical aspects of the proposed methodology are studied in this thesis. They involve the use of domain-specific knowledge for defining relevant smoothing kernels, efficient approximations for reducing computational complexity and a novel method for establishing a general class of nonstationary covariances with applications in robotics and motion capture data.Reprints of the publications that appear at the end of this document, report case studies and experimental results in sensor networks, geostatistics and motion capture data that illustrate the performance of the different methods proposed.
Date of Award1 Aug 2011
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • The University of Manchester
SupervisorJonathan Shapiro (Supervisor)

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