Determining the Incremental Worth of Members of an Aggregate Set through Difference-Based Induction

Avelino J. Gonzalez, University of Central Florida; Sylvia Daroszewski, Harris Corporation, and Howard J. Hamilton, University of Regina

Calculating the incremental worth or weight of the individual components of an aggregate set when only the total worth or weight of the whole set is known is a problem common to several domains. In this article we describe an algorithm capable of inducing such incremental worth from a database of similar (but not identical) aggregate sets. The algorithm focuses on finding aggregate sets in the database that exhibit minimal differences in their corresponding components (referred to here as attributes and their values). This procedure isolates the disimilarities between nearly similar aggregate sets so that any difference in worth between the sets is attributed to these dissimilarities. In effect, this algorithm sm'ves as a mapping function that maps the makeup and overall wcecth cf an aggregate set into the incremental wcrth of its individual attributes. It could also be categorized as a way of calculating interpolation vectors for the attributes in the aggregate set.

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