Evolutionary design of a fuzzy classifier from data

Xiaoguang Chang, John H Lilly
IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics. Part B, Cybernetics 2004, 34 (4): 1894-906
Genetic algorithms show powerful capabilities for automatically designing fuzzy systems from data, but many proposed methods must be subjected to some minimal structure assumptions, such as rule base size. In this paper, we also address the design of fuzzy systems from data. A new evolutionary approach is proposed for deriving a compact fuzzy classification system directly from data without any a priori knowledge or assumptions on the distribution of the data. At the beginning of the algorithm, the fuzzy classifier is empty with no rules in the rule base and no membership functions assigned to fuzzy variables. Then, rules and membership functions are automatically created and optimized in an evolutionary process. To accomplish this, parameters of the variable input spread inference training (VISIT) algorithm are used to code fuzzy systems on the training data set. Therefore, we can derive each individual fuzzy system via the VISIT algorithm, and then search the best one via genetic operations. To evaluate the fuzzy classifier, a fuzzy expert system acts as the fitness function. This fuzzy expert system can effectively evaluate the accuracy and compactness at the same time. In the application section, we consider four benchmark classification problems: the iris data, wine data, Wisconsin breast cancer data, and Pima Indian diabetes data. Comparisons of our method with others in the literature show the effectiveness of the proposed method.

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