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Integrating K-means clustering with a relational DBMS using SQL

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1 Author(s)
C. Ordonez ; Teradata, NCR Corp., San Diego, USA

Integrating data mining algorithms with a relational DBMS is an important problem for database programmers. We introduce three SQL implementations of the popular K-means clustering algorithm to integrate it with a relational DBMS: 1) a straightforward translation of K-means computations into SQL, 2) an optimized version based on improved data organization, efficient indexing, sufficient statistics, and rewritten queries, and 3) an incremental version that uses the optimized version as a building block with fast convergence and automated reseeding. We experimentally show the proposed K-means implementations work correctly and can cluster large data sets. We identify which K-means computations are more critical for performance. The optimized and incremental K-means implementations exhibit linear scalability. We compare K-means implementations in SQL and C++ with respect to speed and scalability and we also study the time to export data sets outside of the DBMS. Experiments show that SQL overhead is significant for small data sets, but relatively low for large data sets, whereas export times become a bottleneck for C++.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering  (Volume:18 ,  Issue: 2 )