Accepted Papers

SPuManTE: Significant Pattern Mining with Unconditional Testing

Leonardo Pellegrina (University of Padova);Matteo Riondato (Amherst College);Fabio Vandin (University of Padova);


We present SPuManTE, an efficient algorithm for mining significant patterns from a transactional dataset. SPuManTE controls the Family-wise Error Rate: it ensures that the probability of reporting one or more false discoveries is less than an user-specified threshold. A key ingredient of SPuManTE is UT, our novel unconditional statistical test for evaluating the significance of a pattern, that requires fewer assumptions on the data generation process and is more appropriate for a knowledge discovery setting than classical conditional tests, such as the widely used Fisher’s exact test. Computational requirements have limited the use of unconditional tests in significant pattern discovery, but UT overcomes this issue by obtaining the required probabilities in a novel efficient way. SPuManTE combines UT with recent results on the supremum of the deviations of pattern frequencies from their expectations, founded in statistical learning theory. This combination allows SPuManTE to be very efficient, while also enjoying high statistical power. The results of our experimental evaluation show that SPuManTE allows the discovery of statistically significant patterns while properly accounting for uncertainties in patterns’ frequencies due to the data generation process.

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