On the imputation of missing data for road traffic forecasting: New insights and novel techniques
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Vehicle flow forecasting is of crucial importance for the management of road traffic in complex urban networks, as well as a useful input for route planning algorithms. In general traffic predictive models rely on data gathered by different types of sensors placed on roads, which occasionally produce faulty readings due to several causes, such as malfunctioning hardware or transmission errors. Filling in those gaps is relevant for constructing accurate forecasting models, a task which is engaged by diverse strategies, from a simple null value imputation to complex spatio-temporal context imputation models. This work elaborates on two machine learning approaches to update missing data with no gap length restrictions: a spatial context sensing model based on the information provided by surrounding sensors, and an automated clustering analysis tool that seeks optimal pattern clusters in order to impute values. Their performance is assessed and compared to other common techniques and different ...