Organizing clusters as a hierarchical tree

In this section, we will take a look at an alternative approach to prototype-based clustering: hierarchical clustering. One advantage of hierarchical clustering algorithms is that it allows us to plot dendrograms (visualizations of a binary hierarchical clustering), which can help with the interpretation of the results by creating meaningful taxonomies. Another useful advantage of this hierarchical approach is that we do not need to specify the number of clusters up front.

The two main approaches to hierarchical clustering are agglomerative and divisive hierarchical clustering. In divisive hierarchical clustering, we start with one cluster that encompasses all our samples, and we iteratively split the ...

Get Python Machine Learning - Second Edition now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from nearly 200 publishers.