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Evolutionary Computation

Fall 2007, Vol. 15, No. 3, Pages 345-367
(doi: 10.1162/evco.2007.15.3.345)
© 2007 by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
A New Approach of Data Clustering Using a Flock of Agents
Article PDF (499.64 KB)

This paper presents a new bio-inspired algorithm (FClust) that dynamically creates and visualizes groups of data. This algorithm uses the concepts of a flock of agents that move together in a complex manner with simple local rules. Each agent represents one data. The agents move together in a 2D environment with the aim of creating homogeneous groups of data. These groups are visualized in real time, and help the domain expert to understand the underlying structure of the data set, like for example a realistic number of classes, clusters of similar data, isolated data. We also present several extensions of this algorithm, which reduce its computational cost, and make use of a 3D display. This algorithm is then tested on artificial and real-world data, and a heuristic algorithm is used to evaluate the relevance of the obtained partitioning.