Feature Extraction and Selection for Parsimonious Classifiers with Multiobjective Genetic Programming

Article Type

Research Article

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IEEE Transactions on Evolutionary Computation


The objectives of this paper are to investigate the capability of genetic programming to select and extract linearly separable features when the evolutionary process is guided to achieve the same and to propose an integrated system for that. We decompose a c -class problem into c binary classification problems and evolve c sets of binary classifiers employing a steady-state multiobjective genetic programming with three minimizing objectives. Each binary classifier is composed of a binary tree and a linear support vector machine (SVM). The features extracted by the feature nodes and some of the function nodes of the tree are used to train the SVM. The decision made by the SVM is considered the decision of the corresponding classifier. During crossover and mutation, the SVM-weights are used to determine the usefulness of the corresponding nodes. We also use a fitness function based on Golub's index to select useful features. To discard less frequently used features, we employ unfitness functions for the feature nodes. We compare our method with 34 classification systems using 18 datasets. The performance of the proposed method is found to be better than 432 out of 570, i.e., 75.79% of comparing cases. Our results confirm that the proposed method is capable of achieving our objectives.

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