Distribution editor

Each node in a Bayesian network requires a probability distribution to be specified, conditioned on its parent nodes.

So for a node A, with parents B,C the distribution to be specified is P(A|B,C).


Distributions are made up from variables, not nodes. If nodes contain single variables, then nodes are equivalent to variables. However, if nodes contain multiple variables, then the distribution required contains the variables in the node, conditioned on the variables in the parent nodes. In the example above, if node A contained the variables {A1,A2}, B contained {B1,B2} and C contained just {C1} then the distribution required for node A would be P(A1,A2|B1,B2,C1).

Distribution editor

Creating new distributions

If a node does not have a distribution assigned, click the New button to create one.

Editing distributions

Once a distribution has been created for a node, numeric values can be entered in the grid(s) to define the distribution.

Deleting Distributions

If a node has a distribution assigned, the Delete button removes it, leaving a null distribution.

Continuous Distributions

Continuous distributions in Bayes Server are represented by Conditional Linear Gaussian (CLG) distributions.

Distribution editor - continuous

If a continuous node has any discrete parents, then the probability table on the left allows selection of the Gaussian distribution that corresponds to the discrete combination selected.

Temporal Distributions

Temporal nodes in a Dynamic Bayesian network, can have multiple distributions, that correspond to different times.

Each distribution can be selected by changing the Time drop down.


Version 10 or later

You can change the order in which parameters are displayed/edited.


This can be used in conjunction with re-ordering columns

For example, you might want to display/edit variables A, B and C in this order:

A B C = False C = True
False False 0.7 0.3
False True 0.1 0.9
True False 0.25 0.75
True True 0.8 0.2

Alternatively, you might want to display/edit the same distribution in this order:

A C B = False B = True
False False 0.7 0.1
False True 0.3 0.9
True False 0.25 0.8
True True 0.75 0.2

Being able to change the V-Order is particularly useful when you want to copy and paste from another distribution or another application that represents variables in a different way.


Version 9.0 or earlier

A chart of continuous distributions can be generated by clicking the Plot button. This allows visualization of Gaussians and Mixtures of Gaussians, and also allows data to be added to the charts.


Zooming can be performed by dragging the mouse to select a region of the chart.

Distribution plot