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Data Mining: Concepts and Techniques, 3rd Edition by Micheline Kamber, Jian Pei, Jiawei Han

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11.1 Probabilistic Model-Based Clustering

In all the cluster analysis methods we have discussed so far, each data object can be assigned to only one of a number of clusters. This cluster assignment rule is required in some applications such as assigning customers to marketing managers. However, in other applications, this rigid requirement may not be desirable. In this section, we demonstrate the need for fuzzy or flexible cluster assignment in some applications, and introduce a general method to compute probabilistic clusters and assignments.

“In what situations may a data object belong to more than one cluster?” Consider Example 11.1.

Example 11.1

Clustering product reviews

AllElectronics has an online store, where customers not only purchase ...

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