For many clustering algorithms, such as k-means, EM, and CLOPE, there is usually a requirement to set some parameters. Often, these parameters directly or indirectly control the number of clusters to return. In the presence of different data characteristics and analysis contexts, it is often difficult for the user to estimate the number of clusters in the data set. This is especially true in text collections such as Web documents, images or biological data. The fundamental question this paper addresses is: ldquoHow can we effectively estimate the natural number of clusters in a given text collection?rdquo. We propose to use spectral analysis, which analyzes the eigenvalues (not eigenvectors) of the collection, as the solution to the above. We first present the relationship between a text collection and its underlying spectra. We then show how the answer to this question enhances the clustering process. Finally, we conclude with empirical results and related work.
Book title: "Knowledge Discovery in Databases: PKDD 2004"
Field of Research
080604 Database Management
Socio Economic Objective
970108 Expanding Knowledge in the Information and Computing Sciences