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Categorical SDEs with Simplex Diffusion
Pierre Richemond · Sander Dieleman · Arnaud Doucet
Event URL: https://openreview.net/forum?id=6rETbXxGX5 »
Diffusion models typically operate in the standard framework of generative modelling by producing continuously-valued datapoints. To this end, they rely on a progressive Gaussian smoothing of the original data distribution, which admits an SDE interpretation involving increments of a standard Brownian motion. However, some applications such as text generation or reinforcement learning might naturally be better served by diffusing categorical-valued data, i.e., lifting the diffusion to a space of probability distributions. To this end, this short theoretical note proposes Simplex Diffusion, a means to directly diffuse datapoints located on an $n$-dimensional probability simplex. We show how this relates to the Dirichlet distribution on the simplex and how the analogous SDE is realized thanks to a multi-dimensional Cox-Ingersoll-Ross process (abbreviated as CIR), previously used in economics and mathematical finance. Finally, we make remarks as to the numerical implementation of trajectories of the CIR process, and discuss some limitations of our approach.

Author Information

Pierre Richemond (Google DeepMind)
Sander Dieleman (DeepMind)
Arnaud Doucet (Oxford University)

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