K-nearest neighbors – a lazy learning algorithm

The last supervised learning algorithm that we want to discuss in this chapter is the k-nearest neighbor (KNN) classifier, which is particularly interesting because it is fundamentally different from the learning algorithms that we have discussed so far.

KNN is a typical example of a lazy learner. It is called lazy not because of its apparent simplicity, but because it doesn't learn a discriminative function from the training data, but memorizes the training dataset instead.

Note

Parametric versus nonparametric models

Machine learning algorithms can be grouped into parametric and nonparametric models. Using parametric models, we estimate parameters from the training dataset to learn a function that ...

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