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Explaining Point Processes by Learning Interpretable Temporal Logic Rules

Shuang Li · Mingquan Feng · Lu Wang · Abdelmajid Essofi · Yufeng Cao · Junchi Yan · Le Song

Keywords: [ temporal point process ]


We propose a principled method to learn a set of human-readable logic rules to explain temporal point processes. We assume that the generative mechanisms underlying the temporal point processes are governed by a set of first-order temporal logic rules, as a compact representation of domain knowledge. Our method formulates the rule discovery process from noisy event data as a maximum likelihood problem, and designs an efficient and tractable branch-and-price algorithm to progressively search for new rules and expand existing rules. The proposed algorithm alternates between the rule generation stage and the rule evaluation stage, and uncovers the most important collection of logic rules within a fixed time limit for both synthetic and real event data. In a real healthcare application, we also had human experts (i.e., doctors) verify the learned temporal logic rules and provide further improvements. These expert-revised interpretable rules lead to a point process model which outperforms previous state-of-the-arts for symptom prediction, both in their occurrence times and types.

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