Using Qualitative Correlations as Evidence of Uncertain Reasoning

Qi Zhao and Toyoaki Nishida

A novel method for extracting, representing and propagating qualitative correlations among hypotheses as confirmatory or disconfirmatory evidence of uncertain reasoning is presented. First, two new concepts, qualitative correlations among hypotheses and qualitative correlation propagation, are introduced. Then, an algorithm for extracting and representing qualitative correlations among hypotheses and an algorithm for propagating qualitative correlations and updating possibilities of hypotheses are proposed. The advantages of the method include: (1) it can applied to the problems where evidence is not explicitly or completely given; (2) few numbers and assumptions need to be provided by domain experts in advance; and consequently, (3) the knowledge acquisition is simple, and the inconsistency in knowledge bases can be avoided. The method has been applied to a practical system for infrared spectrum interpretation. The experimental results show that it is significantly better than other methods used in similar systems.

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