Comparison of dimension reduction algorithms over mandala images generation


This document discusses concrete algorithms for two different approaches of generation of mandala images, [1]: direct construction with graphics primitives, and use of machine learning algorithms.

In the experiments described in this document better results were obtained with the direct algorithms. The direct algorithms were made for the Mathematica StackExchange question "Code that generates a mandala", [3].

The main goals of this document are:

  1. to show some pretty images exploiting symmetry and multiplicity (see this album),

  2. to provide an illustrative example of comparing dimension reduction methods,

  3. to give a set-up for further discussions and investigations on mandala creation with machine learning algorithms.

Two direct construction algorithms are given: one uses "seed" segment rotations, the other superimposing of layers of different types. The following plots show the order in which different mandala parts are created with each of the algorithms.


In this document we use several algorithms for dimension reduction applied to collections of images following the procedure described in [4,5]. We are going to show that with Non-Negative Matrix Factorization (NNMF) we can use mandalas made with the seed segment rotation algorithm to extract layer types and superimpose them to make colored mandalas. Using the same approach with Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) or Independent Component Analysis (ICA) does not produce good layers and the superimposition produces more "watered-down", less diverse mandalas.

From a more general perspective this document compares the statistical approach of "trying to see without looking" with the "direct simulation" approach. Another perspective is the creation of "design spaces"; see [6].

The idea of using machine learning algorithms is appealing because there is no need to make the mental effort of understanding, discerning, approximating, and programming the principles of mandala creation. We can "just" use a large collection of mandala images and generate new ones using the "internal knowledge" data of machine learning algorithms. For example, a Neural network system like Deep Dream, [2], might be made to dream of mandalas.

Direct algorithms for mandala generation

In this section we present two different algorithms for generating mandalas. The first sees a mandala as being generated by rotation of a "seed" segment. The second sees a mandala as being generated by different component layers. For other approaches see [3].

The request of [3] is for generation of mandalas for coloring by hand. That is why the mandala generation algorithms are in the grayscale space. Coloring the generated mandala images is a secondary task.

By seed segment rotations

One way to come up with mandalas is to generate a segment and then by appropriate number of rotations to produce a mandala.

Here is a function and an example of random segment (seed) generation:

MakeSeedSegment[radius_, angle_, n_Integer: 10, 
   connectingFunc_: Polygon, keepGridPoints_: False] :=
   t = Table[
     Line[{radius*r*{Cos[angle], Sin[angle]}, {radius*r, 0}}], {r, 0, 1, 1/n}];
   Join[If[TrueQ[keepGridPoints], t, {}], {GrayLevel[0.25], 
     connectingFunc@RandomSample[Flatten[t /. Line[{x_, y_}] :> {x, y}, 1]]}]

seed = MakeSeedSegment[10, Pi/12, 10];
Graphics[seed, Frame -> True]

This function can make a seed segment symmetric:

MakeSymmetric[seed_] := {seed, 
   GeometricTransformation[seed, ReflectionTransform[{0, 1}]]};

seed = MakeSymmetric[seed];
Graphics[seed, Frame -> True]

Using a seed we can generate mandalas with different specification signatures:

MakeMandala[opts : OptionsPattern[]] :=      
    MakeSeedSegment[20, Pi/12, 12, 
     RandomChoice[{Line, Polygon, BezierCurve, 
       FilledCurve[BezierCurve[#]] &}], False]], Pi/6, opts];

MakeMandala[seed_, angle_?NumericQ, opts : OptionsPattern[]] :=      
    Table[RotationMatrix[a], {a, 0, 2 Pi - angle, angle}]], opts];

This code randomly selects symmetricity and seed generation parameters (number of concentric circles, angles):

n = 12;
     MakeMandala[MakeSeedSegment[10, #2, #3], #2],
      MakeSymmetric[MakeSeedSegment[10, #2, #3, #4, False]], 2 #2]
     ] &, {RandomChoice[{False, True}, n], 
   RandomChoice[{Pi/7, Pi/8, Pi/6}, n], 
   RandomInteger[{8, 14}, n], 
   RandomChoice[{Line, Polygon, BezierCurve, 
     FilledCurve[BezierCurve[#]] &}, n]}]

Here is a more concise way to generate symmetric segment mandalas:

Multicolumn[Table[Image@MakeMandala[], {12}], 5]

Note that with this approach the programming of the mandala coloring is not that trivial — weighted blending of colorized mandalas is the easiest thing to do. (Shown below.)

By layer types

This approach was given by Simon Woods in [3].

"For this one I’ve defined three types of layer, a flower, a simple circle and a ring of small circles. You could add more for greater variety."

The coloring approach with image blending given below did not work well for this algorithm, so I modified the original code in order to produce colored mandalas.

ClearAll[LayerFlower, LayerDisk, LayerSpots, MandalaByLayers]

LayerFlower[n_, a_, r_, colorSchemeInd_Integer] := 
  Module[{b = RandomChoice[{-1/(2 n), 0}]}, {If[
     colorSchemeInd == 0, White, 
     RandomChoice[ColorData[colorSchemeInd, "ColorList"]]], 
      r (a + Cos[n t])/(a + 1) {Cos[t + b Sin[2 n t]], Sin[t + b Sin[2 n t]]}, {t, 0, 2 Pi}], 
     l_Line :> FilledCurve[l], -1]}];

LayerDisk[_, _, r_, colorSchemeInd_Integer] := {If[colorSchemeInd == 0, White, 
    RandomChoice[ColorData[colorSchemeInd, "ColorList"]]], 
   Disk[{0, 0}, r]};

LayerSpots[n_, a_, r_, colorSchemeInd_Integer] := {If[colorSchemeInd == 0, White, 
    RandomChoice[ColorData[colorSchemeInd, "ColorList"]]], 
   Translate[Disk[{0, 0}, r a/(4 n)], r CirclePoints[n]]};

MandalaByLayers[n_, m_, coloring : (False | True) : False, opts : OptionsPattern[]] := 
  Graphics[{EdgeForm[Black], White, 
    Table[RandomChoice[{3, 2, 1} -> {LayerFlower, LayerDisk, LayerSpots}][n, RandomReal[{3, 5}], i, 
       If[coloring, RandomInteger[{1, 17}], 0]]~Rotate~(Pi i/n), {i, m, 1, -1}]}, opts];

Here are generated black-and-white mandalas.

ImageCollage[Table[Image@MandalaByLayers[16, 20], {12}], Background -> White, ImagePadding -> 3, ImageSize -> 1200]

Here are some colored mandalas. (Which make me think more of Viking and Native American art than mandalas.)

ImageCollage[Table[Image@MandalaByLayers[16, 20, True], {12}], Background -> White, ImagePadding -> 3, ImageSize -> 1200]

Training data

Images by direct generation

iSize = 400;

 mandalaImages = 
       MakeSeedSegment[10, Pi/12, 12, RandomChoice[{Polygon, FilledCurve[BezierCurve[#]] &}]], Pi/6], 
     ImageSize -> {iSize, iSize}, ColorSpace -> "Grayscale"], {300}];

(* {39.31, Null} *)

ImageCollage[ColorNegate /@ RandomSample[mandalaImages, 12], Background -> White, ImagePadding -> 3, ImageSize -> 400]

External image data

See the section "Using World Wide Web images".

Direct blending

The most interesting results are obtained with the image blending procedure coded below over mandala images generated with the seed segment rotation algorithm.

directBlendingImages = Table[
         ColorFunction -> 
          RandomChoice[{"IslandColors", "FruitPunchColors", 
            "AvocadoColors", "Rainbow"}]] & /@ 
       RandomChoice[mandalaImages, 4], RandomReal[1, 4]]], {36}];

ImageCollage[directBlendingImages, Background -> White, ImagePadding -> 3, ImageSize -> 1200]


Dimension reduction algorithms application

In this section we are going to apply the dimension reduction algorithms Singular Value Decomposition (SVD), Independent Component Analysis (ICA), and Non-Negative Matrix Factorization (NNMF) to a linear vector space representation (a matrix) of an image dataset. In the next section we use the bases generated by those algorithms to make mandala images.
We are going to use the packages [7,8] for ICA and NNMF respectively.


Linear vector space representation

The linear vector space representation of the images is simple — each image is flattened to a vector (row-wise), and the image vectors are put into a matrix.

mandalaMat = Flatten@*ImageData@*ColorNegate /@ mandalaImages;

(* {300, 160000} *)

Re-factoring and basis images

The following code re-factors the images matrix with SVD, ICA, and NNMF and extracts the basis images.

 svdRes = SingularValueDecomposition[mandalaMat, 20];
(* {5.1123, Null} *)

svdBasisImages = Map[ImageAdjust@Image@Partition[#, iSize] &, Transpose@svdRes[[3]]];

 icaRes = 
   IndependentComponentAnalysis[Transpose[mandalaMat], 20, 
    PrecisionGoal -> 4, "MaxSteps" -> 100];
(* {23.41, Null} *)

icaBasisImages = Map[ImageAdjust@Image@Partition[#, iSize] &, Transpose[icaRes[[1]]]];

 nnmfRes = 
   GDCLS[mandalaMat, 20, PrecisionGoal -> 4, 
    "MaxSteps" -> 20, "RegularizationParameter" -> 0.1];
(* {233.209, Null} *)

nnmfBasisImages = Map[ImageAdjust@Image@Partition[#, iSize] &, nnmfRes[[2]]];


Let us visualize the bases derived with the matrix factorization methods.

Grid[{{"SVD", "ICA", "NNMF"},
      Map[ImageCollage[#, Automatic, {400, 500}, 
        Background -> LightBlue, ImagePadding -> 5, ImageSize -> 350] &, 
      {svdBasisImages, icaBasisImages, nnmfBasisImages}]
     }, Dividers -> All]


Here are some observations for the bases.

  1. The SVD basis has an average mandala image as its first vector and the other vectors are "differences" to be added to that first vector.

  2. The SVD and ICA bases are structured similarly. That is because ICA and SVD are both based on orthogonality — ICA factorization uses an orthogonality criteria based on Gaussian noise properties (which is more relaxed than SVD’s standard orthogonality criteria.)

  3. As expected, the NNMF basis images have black background because of the enforced non-negativity. (Black corresponds to 0, white to 1.)

  4. Compared to the SVD and ICA bases the images of the NNMF basis are structured in a radial manner. This can be demonstrated using image binarization.

Grid[{{"SVD", "ICA", "NNMF"}, Map[ImageCollage[Binarize[#, 0.5] & /@ #, Automatic, {400, 500}, Background -> LightBlue, ImagePadding -> 5, ImageSize -> 350] &, {svdBasisImages, icaBasisImages, nnmfBasisImages}] }, Dividers -> All]

We can see that binarizing of the NNMF basis images shows them as mandala layers. In other words, using NNMF we can convert the mandalas of the seed segment rotation algorithm into mandalas generated by an algorithm that superimposes layers of different types.

Blending with image bases samples

In this section we just show different blending images using the SVD, ICA, and NNMF bases.

Blending function definition

Options[MandalaImageBlending] = {"BaseImage" -> {}, "BaseImageWeight" -> Automatic, "PostBlendingFunction" -> (RemoveBackground@*ImageAdjust)};
MandalaImageBlending[basisImages_, nSample_Integer: 4, n_Integer: 12, opts : OptionsPattern[]] :=      
  Block[{baseImage, baseImageWeight, postBlendingFunc, sImgs, sImgWeights},
   baseImage = OptionValue["BaseImage"];
   baseImageWeight = OptionValue["BaseImageWeight"];
   postBlendingFunc = OptionValue["PostBlendingFunction"];
     sImgs = 
      Flatten@Join[{baseImage}, RandomSample[basisImages, nSample]];
     If[NumericQ[baseImageWeight] && ImageQ[baseImage],
      sImgWeights = 
       Join[{baseImageWeight}, RandomReal[1, Length[sImgs] - 1]],
      sImgWeights = RandomReal[1, Length[sImgs]]
          DeleteCases[{opts}, ("BaseImage" -> _) | ("BaseImageWeight" -> _) | ("PostBlendingFunction" -> _)],               
          ColorFunction -> 
           RandomChoice[{"IslandColors", "FruitPunchColors", 
             "AvocadoColors", "Rainbow"}]] & /@ sImgs, 
       sImgWeights]), {n}]

SVD image basis blending

svdBlendedImages = MandalaImageBlending[Rest@svdBasisImages, 4, 24];
ImageCollage[svdBlendedImages, Background -> White, ImagePadding -> 3, ImageSize -> 1200]


svdBlendedImages = MandalaImageBlending[Rest@svdBasisImages, 4, 24, "BaseImage" -> First[svdBasisImages], "BaseImageWeight" -> 0.5];
ImageCollage[svdBlendedImages, Background -> White, ImagePadding -> 3, ImageSize -> 1200]


ICA image basis blending

icaBlendedImages = MandalaImageBlending[Rest[icaBasisImages], 4, 36, "BaseImage" -> First[icaBasisImages], "BaseImageWeight" -> Automatic];
ImageCollage[icaBlendedImages, Background -> White, ImagePadding -> 3, ImageSize -> 1200]


NNMF image basis blending

nnmfBlendedImages = MandalaImageBlending[nnmfBasisImages, 4, 36];
ImageCollage[nnmfBlendedImages, Background -> White, ImagePadding -> 3, ImageSize -> 1200]


Using World Wide Web images

A natural question to ask is:

What would be the outcomes of the above procedures to mandala images found in the World Wide Web (WWW) ?

Those WWW images are most likely man made or curated.

The short answer is that the results are not that good. Better results might be obtained using a larger set of WWW images (than just 100 in the experiment results shown below.)

Here is a sample from the WWW mandala images:


Here are the results obtained with NNMF basis:


Future plans

My other motivation for writing this document is to set up a basis for further investigations and discussions on the following topics.

  1. Having a large image database of "real world", human made mandalas.

  2. Utilization of Neural Network algorithms to mandala creation.

  3. Utilization of Cellular Automata to mandala generation.

  4. Investigate mandala morphing and animations.

  5. Making a domain specific language of specifications for mandala creation and modification.

The idea of using machine learning algorithms for mandala image generation was further supported by an image classifier that recognizes fairly well (suitably normalized) mandala images obtained in different ways:



[1] Wikipedia entry: Mandala, .

[2] Wikipedia entry: DeepDream, .

[3] "Code that generates a mandala", Mathematica StackExchange, .

[4] Anton Antonov, "Comparison of PCA and NNMF over image de-noising", (2016), MathematicaForPrediction at WordPress blog. URL: .

[5] Anton Antonov, "Handwritten digits recognition by matrix factorization", (2016), MathematicaForPrediction at WordPress blog. URL: .

[6] Chris Carlson, "Social Exploration of Design Spaces: A Proposal", (2016), Wolfram Technology Conference 2016. URL: http://wac , YouTube: .

[7] Anton Antonov, Independent Component Analysis Mathematica package, (2016), source code at MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, package IndependentComponentAnalysis.m .

[8] Anton Antonov, Implementation of the Non-Negative Matrix Factorization algorithm in Mathematica, (2013), source code at MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, package NonNegativeMatrixFactorization.m.

Tries with frequencies in Java


This blog post describes the installation and use in Mathematica of Tries with frequencies [1] implemented in Java [2] through a corresponding Mathematica package [3].

Prefix tree or Trie, [6], is a tree data structure that stores a set of "words" that consist of "characters" — each element can be seen as a key to itself. The article [1] and packages [2,3,4] extend that data structure to have additional data (frequencies) associated with each key.

The packages [2,3] work with lists of strings only. The package [4] can work with more general data but it is much slower.

The main motivation to create the package [3] was to bring the fast Trie functions implementations of [2] into Mathematica in order to prototype, implement, and experiment with different text processing algorithms. (Like, inductive grammar parsers generation and entity name recognition.) The speed of combining [2] and [3] is evaluated in the section "Performance tests" below.


This following directory path has to have the jar file "TriesWithFrequencies.jar".

$JavaTriesWithFrequenciesPath = 
 FileNameJoin[{$JavaTriesWithFrequenciesPath, "TriesWithFrequencies.jar"}]]

(* True *)

For more details see the explanations in the README file in the GitHub directory of [2].

The following directory is expected to have the Mathematica package [3].

dirName = "/Users/antonov/MathFiles/MathematicaForPrediction";
FileExistsQ[FileNameJoin[{dirName, "JavaTriesWithFrequencies.m"}]]

(* True *)

AppendTo[$Path, dirName];

This commands installs Java (via JLink`) and loads the necessary Java libraries.


Basic examples

For brevity the basic examples are not included in this blog post. Here is album of images that shows the "JavaTrie.*" commands with their effects:

"JavaTrieExample" .

More detailed explanations can be found in the Markdown document, [7]:

Next, we are going to look into performance evaluation examples (also given in [7].)

Membership of words

Assume we want find the words of "Hamlet" that are not in the book "Origin of Species". This section shows that the Java trie creation and query times for this task are quite small.

Read words

The following code reads the words in the texts. We get 33000 words from "Hamlet" and 151000 words from "Origin of Species".

hWords =
   words = 
     ExampleData[{"Text", "Hamlet"}], {Whitespace, 
   words = Select[ToLowerCase[words], StringLength[#] > 0 &]

(* 32832 *)

osWords =
   words = 
     ExampleData[{"Text", "OriginOfSpecies"}], {Whitespace, 
   words = Select[ToLowerCase[words], StringLength[#] > 0 &]

(* 151205 *)


First we create trie with "Origin of species" words:

 jOStr = JavaTrieCreateBySplit[osWords];

(* {0.682531, Null} *)

Sanity check — the "Origin of species" words are in the trie:

 And @@ JavaObjectToExpression[
   JavaTrieContains[jOStr, Characters /@ osWords]]

(* {1.32224, True} *)

Membership of "Hamlet" words into "Origin of Species":

 res = JavaObjectToExpression[
    JavaTrieContains[jOStr, Characters /@ hWords]];

(* {0.265307, Null} *)

Tallies of belonging:


(* {{True, 24924}, {False, 7908}} *)

Sample of words from "Hamlet" that do not belong to "Origin of Species":

RandomSample[Pick[hWords, Not /@ res], 30]

(* {"rosencrantz", "your", "mar", "airy", "rub", "honesty", \
"ambassadors", "oph", "returns", "pale", "virtue", "laertes", \
"villain", "ham", "earnest", "trail", "unhand", "quit", "your", \
"your", "fishmonger", "groaning", "your", "wake", "thou", "liest", \
"polonius", "upshot", "drowned", "grosser"} *)

Common words sample:

RandomSample[Pick[hWords, res], 30]

(* {"as", "indeed", "it", "with", "wild", "will", "to", "good", "so", \
"dirt", "the", "come", "not", "or", "but", "the", "why", "my", "to", \
"he", "and", "you", "it", "to", "potent", "said", "the", "are", \
"question", "soft"} *)


The node counts statistics calculation is fast:


(* {0.002344, <|"total" -> 20723, "internal" -> 15484, "leaves" -> 5239|>} *)

The node counts statistics computation after shrinking is comparably fast :


(* {0.00539, <|"total" -> 8918,  "internal" -> 3679, "leaves" -> 5239|>} *)

The conversion of a large trie to JSON and computing statistics over the obtained tree is reasonably fast:

 res = JavaTrieToJSON[jOStr];

(* {0.557221, Null} *)

  Cases[res, ("value" -> v_) :> v, \[Infinity]], 
  Range[0, 1, 0.1]]

(* {0.019644, {1., 1., 1., 1., 2., 3., 5., 9., 17., 42., 151205.}} *)

Dictionary infixes

Get all words from a dictionary:

allWords =  DictionaryLookup["*"];
allWords // Length

(* 92518 *)

Trie creation and shrinking:

 jDTrie = JavaTrieCreateBySplit[allWords];
 jDShTrie = JavaTrieShrink[jDTrie];

(* {0.30508, Null} *)

JSON form extraction:

 jsonRes = JavaTrieToJSON[jDShTrie];

(* {3.85955, Null} *)

Here are the node statistics of the original and shrunk tries:


Find the infixes that have more than three characters and appear more than 10 times:

Multicolumn[#, 4] &@
     jsonRes, ("key" -> v_) :> v, Infinity]], -#[[-1]] &], StringLength[#[[1]]] > 3 && #[[2]] > 10 &]

Unit tests

Many of example shown in this document have corresponding tests in the file JavaTriesWithFrequencies-Unit-Tests.wlt hosted at GitHub.

tr = TestReport[
  dirName <> "/UnitTests/JavaTriesWithFrequencies-Unit-Tests.wlt"]


[1] Anton Antonov, "Tries with frequencies for data mining", (2013), MathematicaForPrediction at WordPress blog. URL: .

[2] Anton Antonov, Tries with frequencies in Java, (2017), source code at MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, project Java/TriesWithFrequencies.

[3] Anton Antonov, Java tries with frequencies Mathematica package, (2017), source code at MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, package JavaTriesWithFrequencies.m .

[4] Anton Antonov, Tries with frequencies Mathematica package, (2013), source code at MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, package TriesWithFrequencies.m .

[5] Anton Antonov, Java tries with frequencies Mathematica unit tests, (2017), source code at MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, unit tests file JavaTriesWithFrequencies-Unit-Tests.wlt .

[6] Wikipedia, Trie, .

[7] Anton Antonov, "Tries with frequencies in Java", (2017), MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub.

Text analysis of Trump tweets


This post is to proclaim the MathematicaVsR at GitHub project “Text analysis of Trump tweets” in which we compare Mathematica and R over text analyses of Twitter messages made by Donald Trump (and his staff) before the USA president elections in 2016.

The project follows and extends the exposition and analysis of the R-based blog post "Text analysis of Trump’s tweets confirms he writes only the (angrier) Android half" by David Robinson at; see [1].

The blog post [1] links to several sources that claim that during the election campaign Donald Trump tweeted from his Android phone and his campaign staff tweeted from an iPhone. The blog post [1] examines this hypothesis in a quantitative way (using various R packages.)

The hypothesis in question is well summarized with the tweet:

Every non-hyperbolic tweet is from iPhone (his staff).
Every hyperbolic tweet is from Android (from him).
— Todd Vaziri (@tvaziri) August 6, 2016

This conjecture is fairly well supported by the following mosaic plots, [2]:

TextAnalysisOfTrumpTweets-iPhone-MosaicPlot-Sentiment-Device TextAnalysisOfTrumpTweets-iPhone-MosaicPlot-Device-Weekday-Sentiment

We can see the that Twitter messages from iPhone are much more likely to be neutral, and the ones from Android are much more polarized. As Christian Rudder (one of the founders of OkCupid, a dating website) explains in the chapter "Death by a Thousand Mehs" of the book "Dataclysm", [3], having a polarizing image (online persona) is as a very good strategy to engage online audience:

[…] And the effect isn’t small-being highly polarizing will in fact get you about 70 percent more messages. That means variance allows you to effectively jump several "leagues" up in the dating pecking order – […]

(The mosaic plots above were made for the Mathematica-part of this project. Mosaic plots and weekday tags are not used in [1].)

Concrete steps

The Mathematica-part of this project does not follow closely the blog post [1]. After the ingestion of the data provided in [1], the Mathematica-part applies alternative algorithms to support and extend the analysis in [1].

The sections in the R-part notebook correspond to some — not all — of the sections in the Mathematica-part.

The following list of steps is for the Mathematica-part.

  1. Data ingestion
    • The blog post [1] shows how to do in R the ingestion of Twitter data of Donald Trump messages.

    • That can be done in Mathematica too using the built-in function ServiceConnect, but that is not necessary since [1] provides a link to the ingested data used [1]:

    • Which leads to the ingesting of an R data frame in the Mathematica-part using RLink.

  2. Adding tags

    • We have to extract device tags for the messages — each message is associated with one of the tags "Android", "iPad", or "iPhone".

    • Using the message time-stamps each message is associated with time tags corresponding to the creation time month, hour, weekday, etc.

    • Here is summary of the data at this stage:


  3. Time series and time related distributions

    • We can make several types of time series plots for general insight and to support the main conjecture.

    • Here is a Mathematica made plot for the same statistic computed in [1] that shows differences in tweet posting behavior:


    • Here are distributions plots of tweets per weekday:


  4. Classification into sentiments and Facebook topics

    • Using the built-in classifiers of Mathematica each tweet message is associated with a sentiment tag and a Facebook topic tag.

    • In [1] the results of this step are derived in several stages.

    • Here is a mosaic plot for conditional probabilities of devices, topics, and sentiments:


  5. Device-word association rules

    • Using Association rule learning device tags are associated with words in the tweets.

    • In the Mathematica-part these associations rules are not needed for the sentiment analysis (because of the built-in classifiers.)

    • The association rule mining is done mostly to support and extend the text analysis in [1] and, of course, for comparison purposes.

    • Here is an example of derived association rules together with their most important measures:


In [1] the sentiments are derived from computed device-word associations, so in [1] the order of steps is 1-2-3-5-4. In Mathematica we do not need the steps 3 and 5 in order to get the sentiments in the 4th step.


Using Mathematica for sentiment analysis is much more direct because of the built-in classifiers.

The R-based blog post [1] uses heavily the "pipeline" operator %>% which is kind of a recent addition to R (and it is both fashionable and convenient to use it.) In Mathematica the related operators are Postfix (//), Prefix (@), Infix (~~), Composition (@*), and RightComposition (/*).

Making the time series plots with the R package "ggplot2" requires making special data frames. I am inclined to think that the Mathematica plotting of time series is more direct, but for this task the data wrangling codes in Mathematica and R are fairly comparable.

Generally speaking, the R package "arules" — used in this project for Associations rule learning — is somewhat awkward to use:

  • it is data frame centric, does not work directly with lists of lists, and

  • requires the use of factors.

The Apriori implementation in “arules” is much faster than the one in “AprioriAlgorithm.m” — “arules” uses a more efficient algorithm implemented in C.


[1] David Robinson, "Text analysis of Trump’s tweets confirms he writes only the (angrier) Android half", (2016),

[2] Anton Antonov, "Mosaic plots for data visualization", (2014), MathematicaForPrediction at WordPress.

[3] Christian Rudder, Dataclysm, Crown, 2014. ASIN: B00J1IQUX8 .

Pareto principle adherence examples

This post (document) is made to provide examples of the Pareto principle manifestation in different datasets.

The Pareto principle is an interesting law that manifests in many contexts. It is also known as "Pareto law", "the law of significant few", "the 80-20 rule".

For example:

  • "80% of the land is owned by 20% of the population",

  • "10% of all lakes contain 90% of all lake water."

For extensive discussion and studied examples see the Wikipedia entry "Pareto principle", [4].

It is a good idea to see for which parts of the analyzed data the Pareto principle manifests. Testing for the Pareto principle is usually simple. For example, assume that we have the GDP of all countries:

countries = CountryData["Countries"];
gdps = {CountryData[#, "Name"], CountryData[#, "GDP"]} & /@ countries;
gdps = DeleteCases[gdps, {_, _Missing}] /. Quantity[x_, _] :> x;

Grid[{RecordsSummary[gdps, {"country", "GDP"}]}, Alignment -> Top, Dividers -> All]


In order to test for the manifestation of the Pareto principle we have to (i) sort the GDP values in descending order, (ii) find the cumulative sums, (iii) normalize the obtained vector by the sum of all values, and (iv) plot the result. These steps are done with the following two commands:

t = Reverse@Sort@gdps[[All, 2]];
ListPlot[Accumulate[t]/Total[t], PlotRange -> All, GridLines -> {{0.2} Length[t], {0.8}}, Frame -> True]


In this document we are going to use the special function ParetoLawPlot defined in the next section and the package [1]. Most of the examples use data that is internally accessible within Mathematica. Several external data examples are considered.

See the package [1] for the function RecordsSummary. See the source file [2] for R functions that facilitate the plotting of Pareto principle graphs. See the package [3] for the outlier detection functions used below.


This simple function makes a list plot that would help assessing the manifestation of the Pareto principle. It takes the same options as ListPlot.

Options[ParetoLawPlot] = Options[ListPlot];
ParetoLawPlot[dataVec : {_?NumberQ ..}, opts : OptionsPattern[]] := ParetoLawPlot[{Tooltip[dataVec, 1]}, opts];
ParetoLawPlot[dataVecs : {{_?NumberQ ..} ..}, opts : OptionsPattern[]] := ParetoLawPlot[MapThread[Tooltip, {dataVecs, Range[Length[dataVecs]]}], opts];
ParetoLawPlot[dataVecs : {Tooltip[{_?NumberQ ..}, _] ..}, opts : OptionsPattern[]] :=
  Block[{t, mc = 0.5},
   t = Map[Tooltip[(Accumulate[#]/Total[#] &)[SortBy[#[[1]], -# &]], #[[2]]] &, dataVecs];
   ListPlot[t, opts, PlotRange -> All, GridLines -> {Length[t[[1, 1]]] Range[0.1, mc, 0.1], {0.8}}, Frame -> True, FrameTicks -> {{Automatic, Automatic}, {Automatic, Table[{Length[t[[1, 1]]] c, ToString[Round[100 c]] <> "%"}, {c, Range[0.1, mc, 0.1]}]}}]

This function is useful for coloring the outliers in the list plots.

ColorPlotOutliers[] := # /. {Point[ps_] :> {Point[ps], Red, Point[ps[[OutlierPosition[ps[[All, 2]]]]]]}} &;
ColorPlotOutliers[oid_] := # /. {Point[ps_] :> {Point[ps], Red, Point[ps[[OutlierPosition[ps[[All, 2]], oid]]]]}} &;

These definitions can be also obtained by loading the packages MathematicaForPredictionUtilities.m and OutlierIdentifiers.m; see [1,3].



Below we are going to use the metric system of units. (If preferred we can easily switch to the imperial system.)

$UnitSystem = "Metric";(*"Imperial"*)


We are going to consider a typical Pareto principle example — weatlh of income distribution.


This code find the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of different countries:

gdps = {CountryData[#, "Name"], CountryData[#, "GDP"]} & /@CountryData["Countries"];
gdps = DeleteCases[gdps, {_, _Missing}] /. Quantity[x_, _] :> x;

The corresponding Pareto plot (note the default grid lines) shows that 10% of countries have 90% of the wealth:

ParetoLawPlot[gdps[[All, 2]], ImageSize -> 400]


Here is the log histogram of the GDP values.

Histogram[Log10@gdps[[All, 2]], 20, PlotRange -> All]


The following code shows the log plot of countries GDP values and the found outliers.

 DynamicModule[{data = Transpose[{Range[Length[gdps]], Sort[gdps[[All, 2]]]}], pos},
  pos = OutlierPosition[modFunc@data[[All, 2]], tb@*opar];
  If[Length[pos] > 0,
   ListLogPlot[{data, data[[pos]]}, PlotRange -> All, PlotTheme -> "Detailed", FrameLabel -> {"Index", "GDP"}, PlotLegends -> SwatchLegend[{"All", "Outliers"}]],
   ListLogPlot[{data}, PlotRange -> All, PlotTheme -> "Detailed", FrameLabel -> {"Index", "GDP"}, PlotLegends -> SwatchLegend[{"All", "Outliers"}]]
 {{opar, SPLUSQuartileIdentifierParameters, "outliers detector"}, {HampelIdentifierParameters, SPLUSQuartileIdentifierParameters}},
 {{tb, TopOutliers, "bottom|top"}, {BottomOutliers, TopOutliers}},
 {{modFunc, Identity, "data modifier function"}, {Identity, Log}}


This table gives the values for countries with highest GDP.

Block[{data = gdps[[OutlierPosition[gdps[[All, 2]], TopOutliers@*SPLUSQuartileIdentifierParameters]]]},
 Row[Riffle[#, " "]] &@Map[Grid[#, Dividers -> All, Alignment -> {Left, "."}] &, Partition[SortBy[data, -#[[-1]] &], Floor[Length[data]/3]]]



Similar data retrieval and plots can be made for countries populations.

pops = {CountryData[#, "Name"], CountryData[#, "Population"]} & /@CountryData["Countries"];
unit = QuantityUnit[pops[[All, 2]]][[1]];
pops = DeleteCases[pops, {_, _Missing}] /. Quantity[x_, _] :> x;

In the following Pareto plot we can see that 15% of countries have 80% of the total population:

ParetoLawPlot[pops[[All, 2]], PlotLabel -> Row[{"Population", ", ", unit}]]


Here are the countries with most people:

Block[{data = pops[[OutlierPosition[pops[[All, 2]], TopOutliers@*SPLUSQuartileIdentifierParameters]]]},
 Row[Riffle[#, " "]] &@Map[Grid[#, Dividers -> All, Alignment -> {Left, "."}] &, Partition[SortBy[data, -#[[-1]] &], Floor[Length[data]/3]]]



We can also see that the Pareto principle holds for the countries areas:

areas = {CountryData[#, "Name"], CountryData[#, "Area"]} & /@CountryData["Countries"];
areas = DeleteCases[areas, {_, _Missing}] /. Quantity[x_, _] :> x;
ParetoLawPlot[areas[[All, 2]]]


Block[{data = areas[[OutlierPosition[areas[[All, 2]], TopOutliers@*SPLUSQuartileIdentifierParameters]]]},
 Row[Riffle[#, " "]] &@Map[Grid[#, Dividers -> All, Alignment -> {Left, "."}] &, Partition[SortBy[data, -#[[-1]] &], Floor[Length[data]/3]]]


Time series-wise

An interesting diagram is to plot together the curves of GDP changes for different countries. We can see China and Poland have had rapid growth.

res = Table[
    (t = CountryData[countryName, {{"GDP"}, {1970, 2015}}];
     t = Reverse@Sort[t["Path"][[All, 2]] /. Quantity[x_, _] :> x];
     Tooltip[t, countryName])
    , {countryName, {"USA", "China", "Poland", "Germany", "France", "Denmark"}}];

ParetoLawPlot[res, PlotRange -> All, Joined -> True, PlotLegends -> res[[All, 2]]]



This dynamic interface can be used for a given country to compare (i) the GDP evolution in time and (ii) the corresponding Pareto plot.

 DynamicModule[{ts, t},
  ts = CountryData[countryName, {{"GDP"}, {1970, 2015}}];
  t = Reverse@Sort[ts["Path"][[All, 2]] /. Quantity[x_, _] :> x];
  Grid[{{"Date list plot of GDP values", "GDP Pareto plot"}, {DateListPlot[ts, ImageSize -> Medium],
     ParetoLawPlot[t, ImageSize -> Medium]}}]
 ], {countryName, {"USA", "China", "Poland", "Germany", "France", "Denmark"}}]


Country flag colors

The following code demonstrates that the colors of the pixels in country flags also adhere to the Pareto principle.

flags = CountryData[#, "Flag"] & /@ CountryData["Countries"];

flags[[1 ;; 12]]


ids = ImageData /@ flags;

pixels = Apply[Join, Flatten[ids, 1]];

ToBinFunc[x_] := Evaluate[Piecewise[MapIndexed[{#2[[1]], #1[[1]] < x <= #1[[2]]} &, Partition[Range[0, 1, 0.1], 2, 1]]]];

pixelsInt = Transpose@Table[Map[ToBinFunc, pixels[[All, i]]], {i, 1, 3}];

pixelsIntTally = SortBy[Tally[pixelsInt], -#[[-1]] &];

ParetoLawPlot[pixelsIntTally[[All, 2]]]



Loking at lengths in the tunnel data we can see the manifestation of an exaggerated Pareto principle.

tunnelLengths = TunnelData[All, {"Name", "Length"}];
tunnelLengths // Length

(* 1552 *)

t = Reverse[Sort[DeleteMissing[tunnelLengths[[All, -1]]] /. Quantity[x_, _] :> x]];



Here is the logarithmic histogram of the lengths:

Histogram[Log10@t, PlotRange -> All, PlotTheme -> "Detailed"]



The following code gathers the data and make the Pareto plots surface areas, volumes, and fish catch values for lakes. We can that the lakes volumes show exaggerated Pareto principle.

lakeAreas = LakeData[All, "SurfaceArea"];
lakeVolumes = LakeData[All, "Volume"];
lakeFishCatch = LakeData[All, "CommercialFishCatch"];

data = {lakeAreas, lakeVolumes, lakeFishCatch};
t = N@Map[DeleteMissing, data] /. Quantity[x_, _] :> x;

opts = {PlotRange -> All, ImageSize -> Medium}; MapThread[ParetoLawPlot[#1, PlotLabel -> Row[{#2, ", ", #3}], opts] &, {t, {"Lake area", "Lake volume", "Commercial fish catch"}, DeleteMissing[#][[1, 2]] & /@ data}]


City data

One of the examples given in [5] is that the city areas obey the Power Law. Since the Pareto principle is a kind of Power Law we can confirm that observation using Pareto principle plots.

The following grid of Pareto principle plots is for areas and population sizes of cities in selected states of USA.

res = Table[
    (cities = CityData[{All, stateName, "USA"}];
     t = Transpose@Outer[CityData, cities, {"Area", "Population"}];
     t = Map[DeleteMissing[#] /. Quantity[x_, _] :> x &, t, {1}];
     ParetoLawPlot[MapThread[Tooltip, {t, {"Area", "Population"}}], PlotLabel -> stateName, ImageSize -> 250])
    , {stateName, {"Alabama", "California", "Florida", "Georgia", "Illinois", "Iowa", "Kentucky", "Ohio", "Tennessee"}}];

Legended[Grid[ArrayReshape[res, {3, 3}]], SwatchLegend[Cases[res[[1]], _RGBColor, Infinity], {"Area", "Population"}]]


Movie ratings in MovieLens datasets

Looking into the MovieLens 20M dataset, [6], we can see that the Pareto princple holds for (1) most rated movies and (2) most active users. We can also see the manifestation of an exaggerated Pareto law — 90% of all ratings are for 10% of the movies.



The following plot taken from the blog post "PIN analysis", [7], shows that the four digit passwords people use adhere to the Pareto principle: the first 20% of (the unique) most frequently used passwords correspond to the 70% of all passwords use.




[1] Anton Antonov, "MathematicaForPrediction utilities", (2014), source code MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub,, package MathematicaForPredictionUtilities.m.

[2] Anton Antonov, Pareto principle functions in R, source code MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub,, source code file ParetoLawFunctions.R .

[3] Anton Antonov, Implementation of one dimensional outlier identifying algorithms in Mathematica, (2013), MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, URL: .

[4] Wikipedia entry, "Pareto principle", URL: .

[5] Wikipedia entry, "Power law", URL: .

[6] GroupLens Research, MovieLens 20M Dataset, (2015).

[7] "PIN analysis", (2012), DataGenetics.

Contingency tables creation examples


In statistics contingency tables are matrices used to show the co-occurrence of variable values of multi-dimensional data. They are fundamental in many types of research. This document shows how to use several functions implemented in Mathematica for the construction of contingency tables.


In this document we are going to use the implementations in the package MathematicaForPredictionUtilities.m from MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, [1].


The implementation of CrossTabulate in [1] is based on Tally, GatherBy, and SparseArray. The implementation of xtabsViaRLink in [1] is based on R‘s function xtabs called via RLink.

Other package used in this document are [2] and [4] imported with these commands:


For a different approach to implementing cross-tabulation than those taken in [1] see the Stack Overflow answer by Mr.Wizard.

Using Titanic data

Getting data

titanicData = 
  Flatten@*List @@@ ExampleData[{"MachineLearning", "Titanic"}, "Data"];
titanicData = DeleteCases[titanicData, {___, _Missing, ___}];

titanicColumnNames = 
  Flatten@*List @@ ExampleData[{"MachineLearning", "Titanic"}, "VariableDescriptions"];
aTitanicColumnNames = 
  AssociationThread[titanicColumnNames -> Range[Length[titanicColumnNames]]];

Note that we have removed the records with missing data (for simpler exposition).

Data summary

(* {1046, 4} *)

RecordsSummary[titanicData, titanicColumnNames]


Using CrossTabulate

Assume that we want to group the people according to their passenger class and survival and we want to find the average age for each group.

We can do that by

1. finding the counts contingency table C for the variables "passenger class" and "passenger survival",

2. finding the age contingency table A for the same variables, and

3. do the element-wise division \frac{A}{C}.

ctCounts = 
   titanicData[[All, aTitanicColumnNames /@ {"passenger class", "passenger survival"}]]];
MatrixForm[#1, TableHeadings -> {#2, #3}] & @@ ctCounts


ctTotalAge = 
    aTitanicColumnNames /@ {"passenger class", "passenger survival", 
      "passenger age"}]]];
MatrixForm[#1, TableHeadings -> {#2, #3}] & @@ ctTotalAge


 TableHeadings -> Values[Rest[ctTotalAge]]]


(We have to make the sparse array ctCounts a regular array because otherwise we get warnings for division by zero because of the sparse array’s default value.)

Let us repeat the steps above by dividing the passengers before-hand according to their sex.

  (mCount = 
     CrossTabulate[#[[All, aTitanicColumnNames /@ {"passenger class", "passenger survival"}]]]; 
   mAge = CrossTabulate[#[[All, aTitanicColumnNames /@ {"passenger class", "passenger survival", "passenger age"}]]];
   #[[1,  aTitanicColumnNames["passenger sex"]]] -> 
     MatrixForm[mAge[[1]]/Normal[mCount[[1]]], TableHeadings -> Values[Rest[mAge]]]) &, 
  GatherBy[titanicData, #[[aTitanicColumnNames["passenger sex"]]] &]]


The alternative of CrossTabulate is xtabsViaRLink that is uses R’s function xtabs via RLink.


(* {Paclet[RLinkRuntime,, <>]} *)

ctCounts = 
    titanicData[[All, aTitanicColumnNames /@ {"passenger class", "passenger survival"}]],
    {"", "passenger.survival"},
    " ~ + passenger.survival"];
MatrixForm[#1, TableHeadings -> {#2, #3}] & @@ ctCounts


Relation to mosaic plots

The graphical visualization of a dataset with mosaic plots, [2,3], is similar in spirit to contingency tables. Compare the following mosaic plot with the contingency table in the last section.

 titanicData[[All, aTitanicColumnNames /@ {"passenger class", "passenger survival"}]] ]


Straightforward calling of MatrixForm

At this point we might want to be able to call MatrixForm more directly for the output of CrossTabulate and FromRXTabsForm. One way to do this is to define an up-value for Association .

MatrixForm[x_Association /; (KeyExistsQ[x, "XTABMatrix"] || KeyExistsQ[x, "XTABTensor"])] ^:= (MatrixForm[#1, TableHeadings -> Rest[{##}]] & @@ x);

Now we can do this:

MatrixForm @
 CrossTabulate[titanicData[[All, aTitanicColumnNames /@ {"passenger class", "passenger survival"}]]]


Remark: Because of this up-value definition for Association with MatrixForm we have the associations returned by CrossTabulate and FromRXTabsForm to have the key "XTABMatrix" instead of "Matrix", the former assumed to be much more rarely to be used than the latter.

Using larger data

Let us consider an example with larger data that has larger number of unique values in its columns.

Getting online retail invoices data

The following dataset is taken from [6].

data = Import[ "/Volumes/WhiteSlimSeagate/Datasets/UCI Online Retail Data Set/Online Retail.csv"];
columnNames = First[data];
data = Rest[data];

aColumnNames = AssociationThread[columnNames -> Range[Length[columnNames]]];

Data summary

We have \approx 66000 rows and 8 columns:

(* {65499, 8} *)

Here is a summary of the columns:

Magnify[#, 0.75] &@RecordsSummary[data, columnNames]


Contingency tables

Country vs. StockCode

There is no one-to-one correspondence between the values of the column "Description" and the column "StockCode" which can be seen with this command:

  GatherBy[data[[All, aColumnNames /@ {"Description", "StockCode"}]], First]]
(* {1,144} *)

The way in which the column "StockCode" was ingested made it have multiple types for its values:

Tally[NumberQ /@ data[[All, aColumnNames["StockCode"]]]]
(* {{False,9009},{True,56490}} *)

So let us convert it to all strings:

data[[All, aColumnNames["StockCode"]]] = 
  ToString /@ data[[All, aColumnNames["StockCode"]]];

Here we find the contingency table for "Country" and "StockCode" over "Quantity" using CrossTabulate:

 ctRes = CrossTabulate[
    data[[All, aColumnNames /@ {"Country", "StockCode", "Quantity"}]]];
(* {0.256339,Null} *)

Here we find the contingency table for "Country" and "StockCode" over "Quantity" using xtabsViaRLink:

 rres = xtabsViaRLink[
   data[[All, aColumnNames /@ {"Country", "StockCode", "Quantity"}]],
   {"Country", "StockCode", "Quantity"},
   "Quantity ~ Country + StockCode"]; 
 ctRRes = FromRXTabsForm[rres];
(* {0.843621,Null} *)

Both functions produce the same result:

ctRRes["matrix"] == N@ctRRes[[1]]
(* True *)

Note that xtabsViaRLink is slower but still fairly quick.

Here we plot the contingency table using MatrixPlot :

MatrixPlot[ctRRes["matrix"], AspectRatio -> 1/1.5, 
  FrameTicks -> {{#, #} &@ Table[{i, ctRRes["rownames"][[i]]}, {i, Length[ctRRes["rownames"]]}], 
  {Automatic, Automatic}}, ImageSize -> 550]


Country vs. Quarter

Let us extend the data with columns that have months and quarters corresponding to the invoice dates.

The following commands computing date objects and extracting month and quarter values from them are too slow.

(*AbsoluteTiming[dobjs=DateObject[{#,{"Month","/","Day","/","Year"," \
(* {30.2595,Null} *)

(* {91.1732,Null} *)

We can use the following ad hoc computation instead.

dvals = StringSplit[#, {"/", " ", ":"}] & /@ 

This summary shows that the second value in the dates is day of month, and the first value is most likely month.

Magnify[#, 0.75] &@ RecordsSummary[dvals[[All, 1 ;; 3]], "MaxTallies" -> 16]


These commands extend the data and the corresponding column-name-to-index association.

ms = DateValue[Table[DateObject[{2016, i, 1}], {i, 12}], "MonthName"];
dvals = Map[{ms[[#]], "Q" <> ToString[Quotient[#, 4] + 1]} &, ToExpression @ dvals[[All, 1]]];
dataM = MapThread[Join[#1, #2] &, {data, dvals}];
aColumnNamesM = 
  Join[aColumnNames, <|"MonthName" -> (Length[aColumnNames] + 1), "QuarterNameShort" -> (Length[aColumnNames] + 2)|>];
(* {0.054877,Null} *)

Here is the contingency table for "Country" vs "QuarterNameShort" over "Quantity".

ctRes = CrossTabulate[ dataM[[All, aColumnNamesM /@ {"Country", "QuarterNameShort", "Quantity"}]]];
Magnify[#, 0.75] &@ MatrixForm[#1, TableHeadings -> {#2, #3}] & @@ ctRes


Uniform tables

Often when making contingency tables over subsets of the data we obtain contingency tables with different rows and columns. For various reasons (programming, esthetics, comprehension) it is better to have the tables with the same rows and columns.

Here is an example of non-uniform contingency tables derived from the online retail data of the previous section. We split the data over the countries and find contingency tables of "MonthName" vs "QuarterNameShort" over "Quantity".

tbs = Association @
    (xtab = CrossTabulate[#[[All, aColumnNamesM /@ {"MonthName", "QuarterNameShort", "Quantity"}]]];
     #[[1, aColumnNamesM["Country"]]] -> xtab) &,
    GatherBy[ dataM, #[[aColumnNamesM[ "Country"]]] &]];

Magnify[#, 0.75] &@
 Map[MatrixForm[#["Matrix"], TableHeadings -> (# /@ {"RowNames", "ColumnNames"})] &, tbs](*[[{1,12,-1}]]*)


Using the object RSparseMatrix, see [4,5], we can impose row and column names on each table.

First we convert the contingency tables into RSparseMatrix objects:

tbs2 = Map[ ToRSparseMatrix[#["Matrix"], "RowNames" -> #["RowNames"], "ColumnNames" -> #["ColumnNames"]] &, tbs];

And then we impose the desired row and column names:

tbs2 = Map[ ImposeColumnNames[ ImposeRowNames[#, {"January", "December"}], {"Q1", "Q2", "Q3", "Q4"}] &, tbs2];
Magnify[#, 0.75] &@(MatrixForm /@ tbs2)


Generalization : CrossTensorate

A generalization of CrossTabulate is the function CrossTensorate implemented in [1] that takes a "formula" argument similar to R’s xtabs.

This finds number of people of different sub-groups of Titanic data:

ctRes = CrossTensorate[Count == "passenger survival" + "passenger sex" + "passenger class", titanicData, aTitanicColumnNames];


We can verify the result using Count:

Count[titanicData, {"1st", _, "female", "died"}]
(* 5 *)

Count[titanicData, {"2nd", _, "male", "survived"}]
(* 23 *)

To split the cross-tensor across its first variable we can use this command:

sctRes = Association@
  MapThread[Rule[#1, Join[<|"XTABTensor" -> #2|>, Rest@Rest@ctRes]] &, {ctRes[[2]], # & /@ ctRes["XTABTensor"]}];
MatrixForm /@ sctRes


Or we can call the more general function CrossTensorateSplit implemented in [1]:

Map[MatrixForm /@ CrossTensorateSplit[ctRes, #] &, Rest@Keys[ctRes]]


CrossTensorateSplit can also be called with one argument that is a variable name.This will produce a splitting function. For example, the above command can be re-written as :

Map[MatrixForm /@ CrossTensorateSplit[#] @ ctRes &, Rest@Keys[ctRes]]


[1] Anton Antonov, MathematicaForPrediction utilities, (2014), source code MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, package MathematicaForPredictionUtilities.m.

[2] Anton Antonov, Mosaic plot for data visualization implementation in Mathematica, (2014), MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, package MosaicPlot.m.

[3] Anton Antonov, "Mosaic plots for data visualization", (2014), MathematicaForPrediction at WordPress blog. URL: .

[4] Anton Antonov, RSparseMatrix Mathematica package, (2015) MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub. URL: .

[5] Anton Antonov, "RSparseMatrix for sparse matrices with named rows and columns", (2015), MathematicaForPrediction at WordPress blog. URL: .

[6] Daqing Chen, Online Retail Data Set, (2015), UCI Machine Learning Repository. URL: .

Making Chernoff faces for data visualization


This blog post describes the use of face-like diagrams to visualize multidimensional data introduced by Herman Chernoff in 1973, see [1].

The idea to use human faces in order to understand, evaluate, or easily discern (the records of) multidimensional data is very creative and inspirational. As Chernoff says in [1], the object of the idea is to "represent multivariate data, subject to strong but possibly complex relationships, in such a way that an investigator can quickly comprehend relevant information and then apply appropriate statistical analysis." It is an interesting question how useful this approach is and it seems that there at least several articles discussing that; see for example [2].

I personally find the use of Chernoff faces useful in a small number of cases, but that is probably true for many “creative” data visualization methods.

Below are given both simple and more advanced examples of constructing Chernoff faces for data records using the Mathematica package [3]. The considered data is categorized as:

  1. a small number of records, each with small number of elements;
  2. a large number of records, each with less elements than Chernoff face parts;
  3. a list of long records, each record with much more elements than Chernoff face parts;
  4. a list of nearest neighbors or recommendations.

For several of the visualizing scenarios the records of two "real life" data sets are used: Fisher Iris flower dataset [7], and "Vinho Verde" wine quality dataset [8]. For the rest of the scenarios the data is generated.

A fundamental restriction of using Chernoff faces is the necessity to properly transform the data variables into the ranges of the Chernoff face diagram parameters. Therefore, proper data transformation (standadizing and rescaling) is an inherent part of the application of Chernoff faces, and this document describes such data transformation procedures (also using [3]).

Package load

The packages [3,4] are used to produce the diagrams in this post. The following two commands load them.



Making faces

Just a face

Here is a face produced by the function ChernoffFace of [3] with its simplest signature:


Here is a list of faces:

Table[ChernoffFace[ImageSize -> Tiny], {7}]

Proper face making

The "proper" way to call ChernoffFace is to use an association for the facial parts placement, size, rotation, and color. The options are passed to Graphics.

ChernoffFace[ AssociationThread[
    Keys[ChernoffFace["FacePartsProperties"]] -> 
   RandomReal[1, Length[ChernoffFace["FacePartsProperties"]]]],
   ImageSize -> Small , Background -> GrayLevel[0.85]]

The Chernoff face drawn with the function ChernoffFace can be parameterized to be asymmetric.

The parameters argument mixes (1) face parts placement, sizes, and rotation, with (2) face parts colors and (3) a parameter should it be attempted to make the face symmetric. All facial parts parameters have the range [0,1]

Here is the facial parameter list:


(* {"FaceLength", "ForheadShape", "EyesVerticalPosition", "EyeSize", \
    "EyeSlant", "LeftEyebrowSlant", "LeftIris", "NoseLength", \
    "MouthSmile", "LeftEyebrowTrim", "LeftEyebrowRaising", "MouthTwist", \
    "MouthWidth", "RightEyebrowTrim", "RightEyebrowRaising", \
    "RightEyebrowSlant", "RightIris"} *)

The order of the parameters is chosen to favor making symmetric faces when a list of random numbers is given as an argument, and to make it easier to discern the faces when multiple records are visualized. For experiments and discussion about which facial features bring better discern-ability see [2]. One of the conclusions of [2] is that eye size and eye brow slant are most decisive, followed by face size and shape.

Here are the rest of the parameters (colors and symmetricity):


(* {"EyeBallColor", "FaceColor", "IrisColor", "MakeSymmetric", \
    "MouthColor", "NoseColor"} *)

Face coloring

The following code make a row of faces by generating seven sequences of random numbers in \([0,1]\), each sequence with length the number of facial parameters. The face color is assigned randomly and the face color or a darker version of it is used as a nose color. If the nose color is the same as the face color the nose is going to be shown "in profile", otherwise as a filled polygon. The colors of the irises are random blend between light brown and light blue. The color of the mouth is randomly selected to be black or red.

Block[{pars = Keys[ChernoffFace["FacePartsProperties"]]},
 Grid[{#}] &@
     AssociationThread[pars -> RandomReal[1, Length[pars]]],
     <|"FaceColor" -> (rc = 
      "NoseColor" -> RandomChoice[{Identity, Darker}][rc],
      "IrisColor" -> Lighter[Blend[{Brown, Blue}, RandomReal[1]]],
      "MouthColor" -> RandomChoice[{Black, Red}]|>], 
    ImageSize -> 100], {7}]

Symmetric faces

The parameter "MakeSymmetric" is by default True. Setting "MakeSymmetric" to true turns an incomplete face specification into a complete specification with the missing paired parameters filled in. In other words, the symmetricity is not enforced on the specified paired parameters, only on the ones for which specifications are missing.

The following faces are made symmetric by removing the facial parts parameters that start with "R" (for "Right") and the parameter "MouthTwist".

Block[{pars = Keys[ChernoffFace["FacePartsProperties"]]},
 Grid[{#}] &@Table[(
    asc = 
       pars -> RandomReal[1, Length[pars]]],
      <|"FaceColor" -> (rc = 
       "NoseColor" -> RandomChoice[{Identity, Darker}][rc],
       "IrisColor" -> 
        Lighter[Blend[{Brown, Blue}, RandomReal[1]]],
       "MouthColor" -> RandomChoice[{Black, Red}]|>];
    asc = 
       x : (StartOfString ~~ Except["R"] ~~ __) /; 
        x != "MouthTwist"]];
    ChernoffFace[asc, ImageSize -> 100]), {7}]]

Note that for the irises we have two possibilities of synchronization:

pars = <|"LeftIris" -> 0.8, "IrisColor" -> Green|>;
{ChernoffFace[Join[pars, <|"RightIris" -> pars["LeftIris"]|>], 
  ImageSize -> 100], 
  Join[pars, <|"RightIris" -> 1 - pars["LeftIris"]|>], 
  ImageSize -> 100]}

Visualizing records (first round)

The conceptually straightforward application of Chernoff faces is to visualize ("give a face" to) each record in a dataset. Because the parameters of the faces have the same ranges for the different records, proper rescaling of the records have to be done first. Of course standardizing the data can be done before rescaling.

First let us generate some random data using different distributions:

{dists, data} = Transpose@Table[(
     rdist = 
         RandomReal[10]], PoissonDistribution[RandomReal[4]], 
        GammaDistribution[RandomReal[{2, 6}], 2]}];
     {rdist, RandomVariate[rdist, 12]}), {10}];
data = Transpose[data];

The data is generated in such a way that each column comes from a certain probability distribution. Hence, each record can be seen as an observation of the variables corresponding to the columns.

This is how the columns of the generated data look like using DistributionChart:

 ChartLabels -> 
    Grid[List /@ {Style[#2[[1]], Bold, Red, Larger]}] &, dists], Above], 
 ChartElementFunction -> "PointDensity", 
 ChartStyle -> "SandyTerrain", ChartLegends -> dists, 
 BarOrigin -> Bottom, GridLines -> Automatic, 
 ImageSize -> 900]

At this point we can make a face for each record of the rescaled data:

faces = Map[ChernoffFace, Transpose[Rescale /@ Transpose[data]]];

and visualize the obtained faces in a grid.

   Partition[#, 4] &@Map[Append[#, ImageSize -> 100] &, faces]],
  "   ", Magnify[#, 0.85] &@
    List /@ Take[Keys[ChernoffFace["FacePartsProperties"]], 
    TableHeadings -> {"Face part"}]

(The table on the right shows which facial parts are used for which data columns.)

Some questions to consider

Several questions and observations arise from the example in the previous section.

1. What should we do if the data records have more elements than facial parts parameters of the Chernoff face diagram?

This is another fundamental restriction of Chernoff faces — the number of data columns is limiter by the number of facial features.

One way to resolve this is to select important variables (columns) of the data; another is to represent the records with a vector of statistics. The latter is shown in the section "Chernoff faces for lists of long lists".

2. Are there Chernoff face parts that are easier to perceive or judge than others and provide better discern-ability for large collections of records?

Research of the pre-attentiveness and effectiveness with Chernoff faces, [2], shows that eye size and eyebrow slant are the features that provide best discern-ability. Below this is used to select some of the variable-to-face-part correspondences.

3. How should we deal with outliers?

Since we cannot just remove the outliers from a record — we have to have complete records — we can simply replace the outliers with the minimum or maximum values allowed for the corresponding Chernoff face feature. (All facial features of ChernoffFace have the range \([0,1]\).) See the next section for an example.

Data standardizing and rescaling

Given a full array of records, we most likely have to standardize and rescale the columns in order to use the function ChernoffFace. To help with that the package [3] provides the function VariablesRescale which has the options "StandardizingFunction" and "RescaleRangeFunction".

Consider the following example of VariableRescale invocation in which: 1. each column is centered around its median and then divided by the inter-quartile half-distance (quartile deviation), 2. followed by clipping of the outliers that are outside of the disk with radius 3 times the quartile deviation, and 3. rescaling to the unit interval.

rdata = VariablesRescale[N@data,
   "StandardizingFunction" -> (Standardize[#, Median, QuartileDeviation] &),
   "RescaleRangeFunction" -> ({-3, 3} QuartileDeviation[#] &)];
TableForm[rdata /. {0 -> Style[0, Bold, Red], 1 -> Style[1, Bold, Red]}]

Remark: The bottom outliers are replaced with 0 and the top outliers with 1 using Clip.

Chernoff faces for a small number of short records

In this section we are going use the Fisher Iris flower data set [7]. By "small number of records" we mean few hundred or less.

Getting the data

These commands get the Fisher Iris flower data set shipped with Mathematica:

irisDataSet = 
   List @@@ ExampleData[{"MachineLearning", "FisherIris"}, "Data"]];
irisColumnNames = 
    List @@ ExampleData[{"MachineLearning", "FisherIris"}, 

(* {150, 5} *)

Here is a summary of the data:

Grid[{RecordsSummary[irisDataSet, irisColumnNames]}, 
 Dividers -> All, Alignment -> Top]

Simple variable dependency analysis

Using the function VariableDependenceGrid of the package [4] we can plot a grid of variable cross-dependencies. We can see from the last row and column that "Petal length" and "Petal width" separate setosa from versicolor and virginica with a pretty large gap.

Magnify[#, 1] &@
 VariableDependenceGrid[irisDataSet, irisColumnNames, 
  "IgnoreCategoricalVariables" -> False]

Chernoff faces for Iris flower records

Since we want to evaluate the usefulness of Chernoff faces for discerning data records groups or clusters, we are going to do the following steps.

  1. Data transformation. This includes standardizing and rescaling and selection of colors.
  2. Make a Chernoff face for each record without the label class "Species of iris".
  3. Plot shuffled Chernoff faces and attempt to visually cluster them or find patterns.
  4. Make a Chernoff face for each record using the label class "Specie of iris" to color the faces. (Records of the same class get faces of the same color.)
  5. Compare the plots and conclusions of step 2 and 4.

1. Data transformation

First we standardize and rescale the data:

chernoffData = VariablesRescale[irisDataSet[[All, 1 ;; 4]]];

These are the colors used for the different species of iris:

faceColorRules = 
 Thread[Union[ irisDataSet[[All, -1]]] \
 -> Map[Lighter[#, 0.5] &, {Purple, Blue, Green}]]

(* {"setosa" -> RGBColor[0.75, 0.5, 0.75], 
    "versicolor" -> RGBColor[0.5, 0.5, 1.], 
    "virginica" -> RGBColor[0.5, 1., 0.5]} *)

Add the colors to the data for the faces:

chernoffData = MapThread[
   Append, {chernoffData, irisDataSet[[All, -1]] /. faceColorRules}];

Plot the distributions of the rescaled variables:

 Transpose@chernoffData[[All, 1 ;; 4]], 
 GridLines -> Automatic, 
 ChartElementFunction -> "PointDensity", 
 ChartStyle -> "SandyTerrain", 
 ChartLegends -> irisColumnNames, ImageSize -> Large]

2. Black-and-white Chernoff faces

Make a black-and-white Chernoff face for each record without using the species class:

chfacesBW = 
     AssociationThread[{"NoseLength", "LeftEyebrowTrim", "EyeSize", 
        "LeftEyebrowSlant"} -> Most[#]], 
     ImageSize -> 100] & /@ chernoffData;

Since "Petal length" and "Petal width" separate the classes well for those columns we have selected the parameters "EyeSize" and "LeftEyebrowSlant" based on [2].

3. Finding patterns in a collection of faces

Combine the faces into a image collage:

ImageCollage[RandomSample[chfacesBW], Background -> White]

We can see that faces with small eyes tend have middle-lowered eyebrows, and that faces with large eyes tend to have middle raised eyebrows and large noses.

4. Chernoff faces colored by the species

Make a Chernoff face for each record using the colors added to the rescaled data:

chfaces = 
     AssociationThread[{"NoseLength", "LeftEyebrowTrim", "EyeSize", 
        "LeftEyebrowSlant", "FaceColor"} -> #], 
     ImageSize -> 100] & /@ chernoffData;

Make an image collage with the obtained faces:

ImageCollage[chfaces, Background -> White]

5. Comparison

We can see that the collage with colored faces completely explains the patterns found in the black-and-white faces: setosa have smaller petals (both length and width), and virginica have larger petals.

Browsing a large number of records with Chernoff faces

If we have a large number of records each comprised of a relative small number of numerical values we can use Chernoff faces to browse the data by taking small subsets of records.

Here is an example using "Vinho Verde" wine quality dataset [8].

Chernoff faces for lists of long lists

In this section we consider data that is a list of lists. Each of the lists (or rows) is fairly long and represents values of the same variable or process. If the data is a full array, then we can say that in this section we deal with transposed versions of the data in the previous sections.

Since each row is a list of many elements visualizing the rows directly with Chernoff faces would mean using a small fraction of the data. A natural approach in those situations is to summarize each row with a set of descriptive statistics and use Chernoff faces for the row summaries.

The process is fairly straightforward; the rest of the section gives concrete code steps of executing it.

Data generation

Here we create 12 rows of 200 elements by selecting a probability distribution for each row.

{dists, data} = Transpose@Table[(
     rdist = 
         RandomReal[10]], PoissonDistribution[RandomReal[4]], 
        GammaDistribution[RandomReal[{2, 6}], 2]}];
     {rdist, RandomVariate[rdist, 200]}), {12}];

(* {12, 200} *)

We have the following 12 "records" each with 200 "fields":

 ChartLabels -> 
   Row[{Style[#2[[1]], Red, Larger],
        "  ", Style[#1, Larger]}] &, dists], 
 ChartElementFunction -> 
   "ColorScheme" -> "SouthwestColors"], BarOrigin -> Left, 
 GridLines -> Automatic, ImageSize -> 1000]

Here is the summary of the records:

Grid[ArrayReshape[RecordsSummary[Transpose@N@data], {3, 4}], 
 Dividers -> All, Alignment -> {Left}]

Data transformation

Here we "transform" each row into a vector of descriptive statistics:

statFuncs = {Mean, StandardDeviation, Kurtosis, Median, 
   QuartileDeviation, PearsonChiSquareTest};
sdata = Map[Through[statFuncs[#]] &, data];

(* {12, 6} *)

Next we rescale the descriptive statistics data:

sdata = VariablesRescale[sdata, 
   "StandardizingFunction" -> (Standardize[#, Median, 
       QuartileDeviation] &)];

For kurtosis we have to do special rescaling if we want to utilize the property that Gaussian processes have kurtosis 3:

sdata[[All, 3]] = 
  Rescale[#, {3, Max[#]}, {0.5, 1}] &@Map[Kurtosis, N[data]];

Here is the summary of the columns of the rescaled descriptive statistics array:

Grid[{RecordsSummary[sdata, ToString /@ statFuncs]}, 
 Dividers -> All]


First we define a function that computes and tabulates (descriptive) statistics over a record.

TipTable[vec_, statFuncs_, faceParts_] :=
     Transpose@{faceParts, statFuncs, 
       NumberForm[Chop[#], 2] & /@ Through[statFuncs[vec]]}, 
     TableHeadings -> {"FacePart", "Statistic", "Value"}]] /; 
   Length[statFuncs] == Length[faceParts];

To visualize the descriptive statistics of the records using Chernoff faces we have to select appropriate facial features.

faceParts = {"NoseLength", "EyeSize", "EyeSlant", 
   "EyesVerticalPosition", "FaceLength", "MouthSmile"};
TipTable[First@sdata, statFuncs, faceParts]

One possible visualization of all records is with the following commands. Note the addition of the parameter "FaceColor" to also represent how close a standardized row is to a sample from Normal Distribution.

{odFaceColor, ndFaceColor} = {White,  ColorData[7, "ColorList"][[8]]};
Grid[ArrayReshape[Flatten@#, {4, 3}, ""], Dividers -> All, 
   Alignment -> {Left, Top}] &@
  (asc = AssociationThread[faceParts -> #2];
    chFace = 
      Join[asc, <|
        "FaceColor" -> Blend[{odFaceColor, ndFaceColor}, #2[[-1]]], 
        "IrisColor" -> GrayLevel[0.8], 
        "NoseColor" -> ndFaceColor|>], ImageSize -> 120, 
      AspectRatio -> Automatic];
    tt = TipTable[N@#3, Join[statFuncs, {Last@statFuncs}], 
      Join[faceParts, {"FaceColor"}]];
    Column[{Style[#1, Red], 
      Grid[{{Magnify[#4, 0.8], 
         Tooltip[chFace, tt]}, {Magnify[tt, 0.7], SpanFromAbove}}, 
       Alignment -> {Left, Top}]}]) &
  , {Range[Length[sdata]], sdata, data, dists}]

Visualizing similarity with nearest neighbors or recommendations

General idea

Assume the following scenario: 1. we have a set of items (movies, flowers, etc.), 2. we have picked one item, 3. we have computed the Nearest Neighbors (NNs) of that item, and 4. we want to visualize how much of a good fit the NNs are to the picked item.

Conceptually we can translate the phrase "how good the found NNs (or recommendations) are" to:

  • "how similar the NNs are to the selected item", or

  • "how different the NNs are to the selected item."

If we consider the picked item as the prototype of the most normal or central item then we can use Chernoff faces to visualize item’s NNs deviations.

Remark: Note that Chernoff faces provide similarity visualization most linked to Euclidean distance that to other distances.

Concrete example

The code in this section demonstrates how to visualize nearest neighbors by Chernoff faces variations.

First we create a nearest neighbors finding function over the Fisher Iris data set (without the species class label):

irisNNFunc = 
 Nearest[irisDataSet[[All, 1 ;; -2]] -> Automatic, 
  DistanceFunction -> EuclideanDistance]

Here are nearest neighbors of some random row from the data.

itemInd = 67;
nnInds = irisNNFunc[irisDataSet[[itemInd, 1 ;; -2]], 20];

We can visualize the distances with of the obtained NNs with the prototype:

  EuclideanDistance[#, irisDataSet[[itemInd, 1 ;; -2]]] &, 
  irisDataSet[[nnInds, 1 ;; -2]]]]

Next we subtract the prototype row from the NNs data rows, we standardize, and we rescale the interval \([ 0, 3 \sigma ]\) to \([ 0.5, 1 ]\):

snns = Transpose@Map[
       Standardize[#, 0 &, StandardDeviation], {0, 3}, {0.5, 1}], {0, 
       1}] &,
     Map[# - irisDataSet[[itemInd, 1 ;; -2]] &, 
      irisDataSet[[nnInds, 1 ;; -2]]]];

Here is how the original NNs data row look like:

 Take[irisDataSet[[nnInds]], 12], TableHeadings -> irisColumnNames]

And here is how the rescaled NNs data rows look like:

GridTableForm[Take[snns, 12], 
 TableHeadings -> Most[irisColumnNames]]

Next we make Chernoff faces for the rescaled rows and present them in a easier to grasp way.

We use the face parts:

Take[Keys[ChernoffFace["FacePartsProperties"]], 4]

(* {"FaceLength", "ForheadShape", "EyesVerticalPosition", "EyeSize"} *)

To make the face comparison easier, the first face is the one of the prototype, each Chernoff face is drawn within the same rectangular frame, and the NNs indices are added on top of the faces.

chfaces = 
  ChernoffFace[#, Frame -> True, 
     PlotRange -> {{-1, 1}, {-2, 1.5}}, FrameTicks -> False, 
     ImageSize -> 100] & /@ snns;
chfaces = 
     1 -> 
       Text[Style[#2, Bold, Red], {0, 1.4}]]] &, {chfaces, nnInds}];
ImageCollage[chfaces, Background -> GrayLevel[0.95]]

We can see that the first few – i.e. closest — NNs have fairly normal looking faces.

Note that using a large number of NNs would change the rescaled values and in that way the first NNs would appear more similar.


[1] Herman Chernoff (1973). "The Use of Faces to Represent Points in K-Dimensional Space Graphically" (PDF). Journal of the American Statistical Association (American Statistical Association) 68 (342): 361-368. doi:10.2307/2284077. JSTOR 2284077. URL: .

[2] Christopher J. Morris; David S. Ebert; Penny L. Rheingans, "Experimental analysis of the effectiveness of features in Chernoff faces", Proc. SPIE 3905, 28th AIPR Workshop: 3D Visualization for Data Exploration and Decision Making, (5 May 2000); doi: 10.1117/12.384865. URL: .

[3] Anton Antonov, Chernoff Faces implementation in Mathematica, (2016), source code at MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, package ChernofFacess.m .

[4] Anton Antonov, MathematicaForPrediction utilities, (2014), source code MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, package MathematicaForPredictionUtilities.m.

[5] Anton Antonov, Variable importance determination by classifiers implementation in Mathematica,(2015), source code at MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub, package VariableImportanceByClassifiers.m.

[6] Anton Antonov, "Importance of variables investigation guide", (2016), MathematicaForPrediction at GitHub,, folder Documentation.

[7] Wikipedia entry, Iris flower data set, _set .

[8] P. Cortez, A. Cerdeira, F. Almeida, T. Matos and J. Reis. Modeling wine preferences by data mining from physicochemical properties. In Decision Support Systems, Elsevier, 47(4):547-553, 2009. URL .

Comparison of PCA, NNMF, and ICA over image de-noising


In a previous blog post, [1], I compared Principal Component Analysis (PCA) / Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) and Non-Negative Matrix Factorization (NNMF) over a collection of noised images of digit handwriting from the MNIST data set, [3], which is available in Mathematica.

This blog post adds to that comparison the use of Independent Component Analysis (ICA) proclaimed in my previous blog post, [1].


The ICA related additional computations to those in [1] follow.

First we load the package IndependentComponentAnalysis.m :


From that package we can use the function IndependentComponentAnalysis to find components:

{S, A} = IndependentComponentAnalysis[Transpose[noisyTestImagesMat], 9, PrecisionGoal -> 4.5];
Norm[noisyTestImagesMat - Transpose[S.A]]/Norm[noisyTestImagesMat]
(* 0.592739 *)

Let us visualize the norms of the mixing matrix A :

norms = Norm /@ A;
ListPlot[norms, PlotRange -> All, PlotLabel -> "Norms of A rows", 
    PlotTheme -> "Detailed"] // 
pos = OutlierPosition[norms, TopOutliers@*HampelIdentifierParameters]

Norms of the mixing matrix

Next we can visualize the found "source" images:

ncol = 2;
 MapIndexed[{#2[[1]], Norm[#], 
   ImageAdjust@Image[Partition[#, dims[[1]]]]} &, 
 Transpose[S]] /. (# -> Style[#, Red] & /@ pos),
Table["", {ncol - QuotientRemainder[Dimensions[S][[2]], ncol][[2]]}]
], ncol], Dividers -> All]

ICA found source images of 6 and 7 images matrix

After selecting several of source images we zero the rest by modifying the matrix A:

pos = {6, 7, 9};
norms = Norm /@ A;
dA = DiagonalMatrix[
 ReplacePart[ConstantArray[0, Length[norms]], Map[List, pos] -> 1]];
newMatICA = 
 Transpose[Map[# + Mean[Transpose[noisyTestImagesMat]] &, S.dA.A]];
  denoisedImagesICA = Map[Image[Partition[#, dims[[2]]]] &, newMatICA];

Visual comparison of de-noised images

Next we visualize the ICA de-noised images together with the original images and the SVD and NNMF de-noised ones.

There are several ways to present that combination of images.

Grayscale 6 and 7 images, orginal, noised, PCA, NNMF, ICA de-noised

Binarized 6 and 7 images, orginal, noised, PCA, NNMF, ICA de-noised

Image collage of orginal, noised, PCA, NNMF, ICA de-noised 6 and 7 images

Comparison using classifiers

We can further compare the de-noising results by building digit classifiers and running them over the de-noised images.

icaCM = ClassifierMeasurements[digitCF, 
    Thread[(Binarize[#, 0.55] &@*ImageAdjust@*ColorNegate /@ 
        denoisedImagesICA) -> testImageLabels]]

We can see that with ICA we get better results than with PCA/SVD, probably not as good as NNMF, but very close.

Classifier comparison over PCA, NNMF, ICA de-noised images of 6 and 7

All images of this blog post

Computations results for ICA application of noised handwriting images of 6 an 7


[1] A. Antonov, "Comparison of PCA and NNMF over image de-noising", (2016), MathematicaForPrediction at WordPress.

[2] A. Antonov, "Independent Component Analysis for multidimensional signals", (2016), MathematicaForPrediction at WordPress.

[3] Wikipedia entry, MNIST database.