A Generalization of Band Joins and the Merge-Purge Problem

Hernandez, Mauricio A.

The problem of merging multiple databases of information about common entities is frequently encountered in large commercial and government organizations. The problem we study is often called the Merge/Purge problem and is difficult to solve both in scale and accuracy. Large repositories of data always have numerous duplicate information entries about the same entities that are difficult to cull together without an intelligent "equational theory" that identifies equivalent items by a complex, domain dependent matching process. We have developed a system for accomplishing this task for lists of names of potential customers in a direct marketing-type application. Our results for statistically generated data are shown to be accurate and effective when processing the data multiple times using different keys for sorting. The system provides a rule programming module that is easy to program and quite good at finding duplicates especially in an environment with massive amounts of data.



More About This Work

Academic Units
Computer Science
Department of Computer Science, Columbia University
Columbia University Computer Science Technical Reports, CUCS-005-95
Published Here
February 3, 2012