## 4

Linear

Models for

Classification

In the previous chapter, we explored a class of regression models having particularly

simple analytical and computational properties. We now discuss an analogous class

of models for solving classification problems. The goal in classification is to take an

input vectorxand to assign it to one ofKdiscrete classesCkwherek=1,...,K.

In the most common scenario, the classes are taken to be disjoint, so that each input is

assigned to one and only one class. The input space is thereby divided intodecision

regionswhose boundaries are calleddecision boundariesordecision surfaces.In

this chapter, we consider linear models for classification, by which we mean that the

decision surfaces are linear functions of the input vectorxand hence are defined

by(Dā1)-dimensional hyperplanes within theD-dimensional input space. Data

sets whose classes can be separated exactly by linear decision surfaces are said to be

linearly separable.

For regression problems, the target variabletwas simply the vector of real num-

bers whose values we wish to predict. In the case of classification, there are various