Partial Information Decomposition and the Information Delta: A Geometric Unification Disentangling Non-Pairwise Information
Information theory provides robust measures of multivariable interdependence, but classically does little to characterize the multivariable relationships it detects. The Partial Information Decomposition (PID) characterizes the mutual information between variables by decomposing it into unique, redundant, and synergistic components. This has been usefully applied, particularly in neuroscience, but there is currently no generally accepted method for its computation. Independently, the
... tly, the Information Delta framework characterizes non-pairwise dependencies in genetic datasets. This framework has developed an intuitive geometric interpretation for how discrete functions encode information, but lacks some important generalizations. This paper shows that the PID and Delta frameworks are largely equivalent. We equate their key expressions, allowing for results in one framework to apply towards open questions in the other. For example, we find that the approach of Bertschinger et al. is useful for the open Information Delta question of how to deal with linkage disequilibrium. We also show how PID solutions can be mapped onto the space of delta measures. Using Bertschinger et al. as an example solution, we identify a specific plane in delta-space on which this approach's optimization is constrained, and compute it for all possible three-variable discrete functions of a three-letter alphabet. This yields a clear geometric picture of how a given solution decomposes information.