Efficient Inference of Optimal Decision Trees
Inferring a decision tree from a given dataset is a classic problem in machine learning. This problem consists of building, from a labelled dataset, a tree where each node corresponds to a class and a path between the tree root and a leaf corresponds to a conjunction of features to be satisfied in this class. Following the principle of parsimony, we want to infer a minimal tree consistent with the dataset. Unfortunately, inferring an optimal decision tree is NP-complete for several definitions of optimality. For this reason, the majority of existing approaches rely on heuristics, and the few existing exact approaches do not work on large datasets. In this paper, we propose a novel approach for inferring an optimal decision tree with a minimum depth based on the incremental generation of Boolean formulas. The experimental results indicate that it scales sufficiently well and the time it takes to run grows slowly with the size of datasets.