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A Simplified and Effective Algorithm Used to Mine Similar Processes: An Illustrated Example

Authors: Min-Hsun Kuo, Yun-Shiow Chen


The running logs of a process hold valuable information about its executed activity behavior and generated activity logic structure. Theses informative logs can be extracted, analyzed and utilized to improve the efficiencies of the process's execution and conduction. One of the techniques used to accomplish the process improvement is called as process mining. To mine similar processes is such an improvement mission in process mining. Rather than directly mining similar processes using a single comparing coefficient or a complicate fitness function, this paper presents a simplified heuristic process mining algorithm with two similarity comparisons that are able to relatively conform the activity logic sequences (traces) of mining processes with those of a normalized (regularized) one. The relative process conformance is to find which of the mining processes match the required activity sequences and relationships, further for necessary and sufficient applications of the mined processes to process improvements. One similarity presented is defined by the relationships in terms of the number of similar activity sequences existing in different processes; another similarity expresses the degree of the similar (identical) activity sequences among the conforming processes. Since these two similarities are with respect to certain typical behavior (activity sequences) occurred in an entire process, the common problems, such as the inappropriateness of an absolute comparison and the incapability of an intrinsic information elicitation, which are often appeared in other process conforming techniques, can be solved by the relative process comparison presented in this paper. To demonstrate the potentiality of the proposed algorithm, a numerical example is illustrated.

Keywords: process mining, process similarity, artificial intelligence, process conformance.

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