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Correlation-based Feature Selection using Ant Colony Optimization

Authors: M. Sadeghzadeh, M. Teshnehlab


Feature selection has recently been the subject of intensive research in data mining, specially for datasets with a large number of attributes. Recent work has shown that feature selection can have a positive effect on the performance of machine learning algorithms. The success of many learning algorithms in their attempts to construct models of data, hinges on the reliable identification of a small set of highly predictive attributes. The inclusion of irrelevant, redundant and noisy attributes in the model building process phase can result in poor predictive performance and increased computation. In this paper, a novel feature search procedure that utilizes the Ant Colony Optimization (ACO) is presented. The ACO is a metaheuristic inspired by the behavior of real ants in their search for the shortest paths to food sources. It looks for optimal solutions by considering both local heuristics and previous knowledge. When applied to two different classification problems, the proposed algorithm achieved very promising results.

Keywords: Ant colony optimization, Classification, Datamining, Feature selection.

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