Applying propositional learning algorithms to multi-instance data

E.T. Frank and X. Xu

2003 (June)

Working Paper No. 06/03


Multi-instance learning is commonly tackled using special-purpose algorithms. Development of these algorithms has started because early experiments with standard propositional learners have failed to produce satisfactory results on multi-instance data—more specifically, the Musk data. In this paper we present evidence that this is not necessarily the case. We introduce a simple wrapper for applying standard propositional learners to multi-instance problems and present empirical results for the Musk data that are competitive with genuine multi-instance algorithms. The key features of our new wrapper technique are: (1) it discards the standard multi-instance assumption that there is some inherent difference between positive and negative bags, and (2) it introduces weights to treat instances from different bags differently. We show that these two modifications are essential for producing good results on the Musk benchmark datasets.

Working Papers Series, ISSN: 1170-487X


Department of Computer Science, University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand.

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