Further generalization of trees to include cover trees #157

rcurtin opened this Issue Dec 29, 2014 · 2 comments


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rcurtin commented Dec 29, 2014

Reported by rcurtin on 26 Sep 41833825 05:35 UTC
There is an implementation of cover trees in Bill's contrib/ code that should be taken and added to core/tree/. We need to figure out how to make our own tree usage more generalized so that a user can either pass a BinarySpaceTree or a CoverTree to a method.

@rcurtin rcurtin self-assigned this Dec 29, 2014
@rcurtin rcurtin added this to the mlpack 1.0.2 milestone Dec 29, 2014
@rcurtin rcurtin closed this Dec 29, 2014
rcurtin commented Dec 29, 2014

Commented by rcurtin on 19 Dec 42324071 12:04 UTC
I took Pari's implementation (which was very similar to Bill's) and used it to write a new implementation which is in src/mlpack/core/tree/cover_tree.hpp and src/mlpack/core/tree/cover_tree_impl.hpp in r12552 (tests in r12553). Because this tree type can have multiple children, any classes that use a BinarySearchTree have to be adapted in some way. Where before this was written:


we really should now use something more like

for (size_t i = 0; i < tree.NumChildren(); ++i)
rcurtin commented Dec 29, 2014

Commented by rcurtin on 26 Mar 42595946 14:51 UTC
After some serious thought I have restructured the core/tree directory so that BinarySpaceTree and CoverTree have their own directories. In addition, each of these classes has a SingleTreeTraverser and a DualTreeTraverser so that a dual-tree method can be written without having to consider the right way to traverse the tree. This change was made in NeighborSearch in r13333.

Each tree-traversing method should define a RuleType class which implements the actual search in a callback-like function. The tree traverser may call any of the following methods during the search:

  • bool CanPrune(q, r)
  • void BaseCase(q, r)
  • bool LeftFirst(q, r) -- specific to BinarySpaceTree
  • void RecursionOrder(q, r, order) -- not yet implemented, for now is probably specific to CoverTree

Once those methods are implemented one should be able to create a TreeType::DualTreeTraverser<RuleType> object and perform the traversal like that. Therefore, I think the generalization of MLPACK trees to cover trees is complete and ready to generalize further to other types of trees.

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