September 10, 2015

It is possible to do Inductive Logic Programming in mm (a logic programming language implemented in miniKanren) without any help from external libraries.

Inductive Logic Programming is a sub-field of Machine Learning. Given some positive and negative examples, together with the necessary background knowledge, it tries to form a valid hypothesis about what the examples mean. For instance, given the example that ‘Tom is a person’ (a positive example), ‘Alice is a person’ (another positive example), and ‘Bailey is not a person’ (a negative example), a valid hypothesis would be ‘a person is anything that is either Tom or Alice’, and the above sentence would be a possible meaning for the world ‘person’ in this context.

Unlike Prolog, there is no distinction between facts and relations in miniKanren. Predicates (or in standard miniKanren language, relations) are the only type of things that exist. In mm, we represent and store meanings in predicates themselves. In order to indicate that the interpreter knows the meaning, we say that the interpreter possesses the corresponding pattern. For example, in order to make (person Tom) a valid predicate in mm, we have the pattern as follows:

(pattern ((param x))
  (disj (== (param x) Tom)
        (== (param x) Alice)))

We execute the above program with the code as follows (with a miniKanren implementation):

(run 1 (q)
  (runo '()
        '(person Tom)
        '((person (pattern ((param x))
                    (disj (== (param x) Tom)
                          (== (param x) Alice)))))
        q))

The first argument of runo contains all the variables we want to query. Since we are not querying anything, here we write the empty list (). The second argument is the actual predicate (person Tom). The third argument is a association list containing the pattern person. And the fourth argument is the result. Here the predicate should execute successfully and since we are not querying anything, it should return with result ().

Because the interpreter itself runs backwards, we can induct the pattern (or call it meaning as above) given several examples:

(run 1 (q)
  (runo '() '(person Tom) q '())
  (runo '() '(person Alice) q '())
  (runo '() '(person Bailey) q #f))

In the second and third line we say that (person Tom) and (person Alice) should be valid predicates, and in the forth line we say that (person Bailey) should not.

The above code may take very long time to compute because `mm` is not specifically designed for logic inductive programming. However, we can give the program some hints to make it return:

(run 1 (q)
  (fresh (eq2 eq3 eq4)
    (== q `((person (pattern ((param x))
                      (disj (== (param x) ,eq2)
                            (== ,eq3 ,eq4))))))
    (runo '() '(person Tom) q '())
    (runo '() '(person Alice) q '())
    (runo '() '(person Bailey) q #f)))

We tell the interpreter that the pattern person should be a disjunction with two ‘==’s, in which the first argument of the first ‘==’ should be (param x). With the above hint, we get the first result with exactly what we mean by person in this context:

((person (pattern (param x)
           (disj (== (param x) Alice)
                 (== (param x) Tom)))))

Note that the above inductive programming example relies only on the ‘mm’ miniKanren interpreter with out any external library.

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