A Deterministic Self-Organizing Map Approach and its Application on Satellite Data based Cloud Type Classification

24 Aug 2018  ·  Wenbin Zhang, Jianwu Wang, Daeho Jin, Lazaros Oreopoulos, Zhibo Zhang ·

A self-organizing map (SOM) is a type of competitive artificial neural network, which projects the high-dimensional input space of the training samples into a low-dimensional space with the topology relations preserved. This makes SOMs supportive of organizing and visualizing complex data sets and have been pervasively used among numerous disciplines with different applications. Notwithstanding its wide applications, the self-organizing map is perplexed by its inherent randomness, which produces dissimilar SOM patterns even when being trained on identical training samples with the same parameters every time, and thus causes usability concerns for other domain practitioners and precludes more potential users from exploring SOM based applications in a broader spectrum. Motivated by this practical concern, we propose a deterministic approach as a supplement to the standard self-organizing map. In accordance with the theoretical design, the experimental results with satellite cloud data demonstrate the effective and efficient organization as well as simplification capabilities of the proposed approach.

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