Fox, Emily B., Sudderth, Erik B., Jordan, Michael I., Willsky, Alan S.

We consider the problem of speaker diarization, the problem of segmenting an audio recording of a meeting into temporal segments corresponding to individual speakers. The problem is rendered particularly difficult by the fact that we are not allowed to assume knowledge of the number of people participating in the meeting. To address this problem, we take a Bayesian nonparametric approach to speaker diarization that builds on the hierarchical Dirichlet process hidden Markov model (HDP-HMM) of Teh et al. [J. Amer. Statist. Assoc. 101 (2006) 1566--1581]. Although the basic HDP-HMM tends to over-segment the audio data---creating redundant states and rapidly switching among them---we describe an augmented HDP-HMM that provides effective control over the switching rate. We also show that this augmentation makes it possible to treat emission distributions nonparametrically. To scale the resulting architecture to realistic diarization problems, we develop a sampling algorithm that employs a truncated approximation of the Dirichlet process to jointly resample the full state sequence, greatly improving mixing rates. Working with a benchmark NIST data set, we show that our Bayesian nonparametric architecture yields state-of-the-art speaker diarization results.

Johnson, Matthew J., Willsky, Alan S.

There is much interest in the Hierarchical Dirichlet Process Hidden Markov Model (HDP-HMM) as a natural Bayesian nonparametric extension of the ubiquitous Hidden Markov Model for learning from sequential and time-series data. However, in many settings the HDP-HMM's strict Markovian constraints are undesirable, particularly if we wish to learn or encode non-geometric state durations. We can extend the HDP-HMM to capture such structure by drawing upon explicit-duration semi-Markovianity, which has been developed mainly in the parametric frequentist setting, to allow construction of highly interpretable models that admit natural prior information on state durations. In this paper we introduce the explicit-duration Hierarchical Dirichlet Process Hidden semi-Markov Model (HDP-HSMM) and develop sampling algorithms for efficient posterior inference. The methods we introduce also provide new methods for sampling inference in the finite Bayesian HSMM. Our modular Gibbs sampling methods can be embedded in samplers for larger hierarchical Bayesian models, adding semi-Markov chain modeling as another tool in the Bayesian inference toolbox. We demonstrate the utility of the HDP-HSMM and our inference methods on both synthetic and real experiments.

Johnson, Matthew J., Willsky, Alan

There is much interest in the Hierarchical Dirichlet Process Hidden Markov Model (HDP-HMM) as a natural Bayesian nonparametric extension of the traditional HMM. However, in many settings the HDP-HMM's strict Markovian constraints are undesirable, particularly if we wish to learn or encode non-geometric state durations. We can extend the HDP-HMM to capture such structure by drawing upon explicit-duration semi-Markovianity, which has been developed in the parametric setting to allow construction of highly interpretable models that admit natural prior information on state durations. In this paper we introduce the explicitduration HDP-HSMM and develop posterior sampling algorithms for efficient inference in both the direct-assignment and weak-limit approximation settings. We demonstrate the utility of the model and our inference methods on synthetic data as well as experiments on a speaker diarization problem and an example of learning the patterns in Morse code.

Huggins, Jonathan H., Wood, Frank

This paper reviews recent advances in Bayesian nonparametric techniques for constructing and performing inference in infinite hidden Markov models. We focus on variants of Bayesian nonparametric hidden Markov models that enhance a posteriori state-persistence in particular. This paper also introduces a new Bayesian nonparametric framework for generating left-to-right and other structured, explicit-duration infinite hidden Markov models that we call the infinite structured hidden semi-Markov model.

Beal, Matthew, Krishnamurthy, Praveen

Most existing approaches to clustering gene expression time course data treat the different time points as independent dimensions and are invariant to permutations, such as reversal, of the experimental time course. Approaches utilizing HMMs have been shown to be helpful in this regard, but are hampered by having to choose model architectures with appropriate complexities. Here we propose for a clustering application an HMM with a countably infinite state space; inference in this model is possible by recasting it in the hierarchical Dirichlet process (HDP) framework (Teh et al. 2006), and hence we call it the HDP-HMM. We show that the infinite model outperforms model selection methods over finite models, and traditional time-independent methods, as measured by a variety of external and internal indices for clustering on two large publicly available data sets. Moreover, we show that the infinite models utilize more hidden states and employ richer architectures (e.g. state-to-state transitions) without the damaging effects of overfitting.