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Programming Assignment 1: Decision Trees

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Programming Assignment 1: Decision Trees
Part 1: Implementation [7 points]
Your job in this exercise is to predict whether you will have a good night-out in Jerusalem for the coming
New Year’s Eve. Assume that you have kept a record of your previous night-outs with the following
attributes.
• How densely the place is usually occupied {High, Moderate, Low}
• How the prices are {Expensive, Normal, Cheap}
• Volume of the music {Loud, Quiet}
• The location {Talpiot, City-Center, Mahane-Yehuda, Ein-Karem, German-Colony}
• Whether you are a frequent customer (VIP) {Yes, No}
• Whether this place has your favorite beer {Yes, No}
• Whether you enjoyed {Yes, No}
We have provided a data file (dt_data.txt) that contains the relevant records.
(a) Write a program to construct a decision tree based on the idea of splitting by Information Gain.
(b) Run your program on the data file.
(c) Make a prediction for (occupied = Moderate; price = Cheap; music = Loud; location = City-Center;
VIP = No; favorite beer = No).
You can write your program in any programming language. However, you will have to implement the
decision tree learning algorithm yourself instead of using library functions. Provide a description of the
data structures you use, any code-level optimizations you perform, any challenges you face, and of
course, the requested prediction.
Your code should print the decision tree that it produces. Please describe the format in which you
print the decision tree in your report.
Part 2: Software Familiarization [2 points]
Do your own research and find out about a library function that offers a good implementation of the
decision tree learning algorithm. Please learn how to use it. Compare it against your implementation and
suggest some ideas for how you can improve your code. Describe all these in your report.
Part 3: Applications [1 point]
Do your own research and describe some interesting applications of decision trees.
Submission Guidelines
In your submission report, please include the names of all group members and mention their individual
contributions. The report should be in PDF format. Your submission should include the code as well as
the report and is due before 02/07, 11:59pm in an archive in the zip, tar.gz or tar.xz format. Your source
code should have a comment line that contains the names of all group members. Only one submission is
required for each group by one of the group members. Please submit your homework on BlackBoard
(do NOT email the homework to the instructor or the TA).

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