Monday, December 28, 2015

K-nearest Neighbors (KNN) in Python


Neighbors-based classification is a type of instance-based learning or non-generalizing learning: it does not attempt to construct a general internal model, but simply stores instances of the training data. Classification is computed from a simple majority vote of the nearest neighbors of each point: a query point is assigned the data class which has the most representatives within the nearest neighbors of the point.


scikit-learn implements two different nearest neighbors classifiers: KNeighborsClassifier implements learning based on the k nearest neighbors of each query point, where k is an integer value specified by the user. RadiusNeighborsClassifier implements learning based on the number of neighbors within a fixed radius r of each training point, where r is a floating-point value specified by the user.

import numpy as np
import matplotlib.pyplot as plt
from matplotlib.colors import ListedColormap
from sklearn import neighbors, datasets

n_neighbors = 15

# import some data to play with
iris = datasets.load_iris()
X =[:, :2]  # we only take the first two features.
y =

h = .02  # step size in the mesh

# Create color maps
cmap_light = ListedColormap(['#FFAAAA', '#AAFFAA', '#AAAAFF'])
cmap_bold = ListedColormap(['#FF0000', '#00FF00', '#0000FF'])

# we create an instance of Neighbours Classifier and fit the data.
clf = neighbors.KNeighborsClassifier(n_neighbors), y)

# Plot the decision boundary. For that, we will assign a color to each
# point in the mesh [x_min, m_max]x[y_min, y_max].
x_min, x_max = X[:, 0].min() - 1, X[:, 0].max() + 1
y_min, y_max = X[:, 1].min() - 1, X[:, 1].max() + 1
xx, yy = np.meshgrid(np.arange(x_min, x_max, h),
                     np.arange(y_min, y_max, h))
Z = clf.predict(np.c_[xx.ravel(), yy.ravel()])

# Put the result into a color plot
Z = Z.reshape(xx.shape)
plt.pcolormesh(xx, yy, Z, cmap=cmap_light)

# Plot also the training points
plt.scatter(X[:, 0], X[:, 1], c=y, cmap=cmap_bold)
plt.xlim(xx.min(), xx.max())
plt.ylim(yy.min(), yy.max())

Now let's see how RadiusNeighborsClassifier works. After playing a bit with hyperparameters, we'll achieve the following plot:

clf = neighbors.RadiusNeighborsClassifier(3.0, weights='distance')


Despite its simplicity, nearest neighbors has been successful in a large number of classification and regression problems, including handwritten digits or satellite image scenes. Being a non-parametric method, it is often successful in classification situations where the decision boundary is very irregular.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Classifier Boosting with Python


Remember we've talked about random forest and how it was used to improve the performance of a single Decision Tree classifier. The idea of fitting a number of decision tree classifiers on various sub-samples of the dataset and using averaging to improve the predictive accuracy can be used to other algorithms as well and it's called boosting. There are several boosting techniques, which can be used to improve our algorithm, we'll cover the most used ones: AdaBoost and Bagging boost.


An AdaBoost classifier begins by fitting a classifier on the original dataset and then fits additional copies of the classifier on the same dataset, but where the weights of incorrectly classified instances are adjusted such that subsequent classifiers focus more on difficult cases.

Bagging boost

A Bagging classifier fits base classifiers each on random subsets of the original dataset and then aggregate their individual predictions to form a final prediction.


All boosting methods are located under sklearn.ensemble module. Let's see first how to boost SVM using bagging classifier.

import numpy as np
import matplotlib.pyplot as plt
from sklearn.ensemble import BaggingClassifier
from sklearn.datasets import make_gaussian_quantiles
from sklearn.svm import SVC

# Construct dataset
X1, y1 = make_gaussian_quantiles(cov=2.,
                                 n_samples=200, n_features=2,
                                 n_classes=2, random_state=1)
X2, y2 = make_gaussian_quantiles(mean=(3, 3), cov=1.5,
                                 n_samples=300, n_features=2,
                                 n_classes=2, random_state=1)
X = np.concatenate((X1, X2))
y = np.concatenate((y1, - y2 + 1))

# Create and fit an boosted svm
bdt = BaggingClassifier(SVC()), y)

plot_colors = "br"
plot_step = 0.02
class_names = "AB"

plt.figure(figsize=(10, 5))

# Plot the decision boundaries
x_min, x_max = X[:, 0].min() - 1, X[:, 0].max() + 1
y_min, y_max = X[:, 1].min() - 1, X[:, 1].max() + 1
xx, yy = np.meshgrid(np.arange(x_min, x_max, plot_step),
                     np.arange(y_min, y_max, plot_step))

Z = bdt.predict(np.c_[xx.ravel(), yy.ravel()])
Z = Z.reshape(xx.shape)
cs = plt.contourf(xx, yy, Z,

# Plot the training points
for i, n, c in zip(range(2), class_names, plot_colors):
    idx = np.where(y == i)
    plt.scatter(X[idx, 0], X[idx, 1],
                label="Class %s" % n)
plt.xlim(x_min, x_max)
plt.ylim(y_min, y_max)
plt.legend(loc='upper right')
plt.title('Decision Boundary')

Now, let's change the line 18th to AdaBoost and Decision Tree

from sklearn.ensemble import AdaBoostClassifier
from sklearn.tree import DecisionTreeClassifier
bdt = AdaBoostClassifier(DecisionTreeClassifier(max_depth=1), algorithm="SAMME", n_estimators=200)


Boosting techniques may dramatically improve the base algorithm and serve an irreplaceable tool in any data scientists toolkit.