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How to Handle Missing Data?

  • Ignore the tuple: usually done when class label is missing (when doing classification)—not effective when the % of missing values per attribute varies considerably
  • Fill in the missing value manually: tedious + infeasible?
  • Fill in it automatically with
    • a global constant : e.g., “unknown”, a new class?!
    • the attribute mean
    • the attribute mean for all samples belonging to the same class: smarter
    • the most probable value: inference-based such as Bayesian formula or decision tree

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