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Many algorithms for clustering data streams based on the widely used k-Means have been proposed in the literature. Most of them assume that the number of clusters, k, is known and fixed a priori by the user. Aimed at relaxing this assumption, which is often unrealistic in practical applications, we describe an algorithmic framework that allows estimating k automatically from data. We illustrate the potential of the proposed framework by using three state-of-the-art algorithms for clustering data streams - Stream LSearch, CluStream, and Stream KM++ - combined with two well-known algorithms for estimating the number of clusters, namely: Ordered Multiple Runs of k-Means (OMRk) and Bisecting k-Means (BkM). As an additional contribution, we experimentally compare the resulting algorithmic instantiations in both synthetic and real-world data streams. Analyses of statistical significance suggest that OMRk yields to the best data partitions, while BkM is more computationally efficient. Also, the combination of Stream KM++ with OMRk leads to the best trade-off between accuracy and efficiency.
Machine Learning and Applications and Workshops (ICMLA), 2011 10th International Conference on (Volume:2 )
Date of Conference: 18-21 Dec. 2011