bdarst bdarst - 23 days ago 6
R Question

Fastest way to impute column means with large data

I have a large numeric dataset (~700 rows, 350,000 columns, reading in as a data.table in R) containing some NA's that I would like to replace with column means as quickly as possible. I found a previous post that replaces NA's with 0, but when I modify the solution to instead input column means, I get j, the column number. It seems like I must be missing something obvious...Any suggestions on how to calculate column means using this method?

Fastest way to replace NAs in a large data.table

#original code
f_dowle3 = function(DT) {
for(j in seq_len(ncol((DT)))
set(DT,which(is.na(DT[[j]])),j,0)
}

#modified code
impute = function(DT) {
for(j in 2:ncol(DT))
set(DT,which(is.na(DT[[j]])),j,mean(DT[,j],na.rm = TRUE))
}

test_impute = fread("test_impute.csv")

test_impute
ID snp1 snp2 snp3 snp4
1: 1 2 1 1 0
2: 2 2 2 0 0
3: 3 2 NA 0 NA
4: 4 2 1 2 0
5: 5 2 NA 2 0
6: 6 2 1 1 0
7: 7 1 1 NA 0
8: 8 NA 1 0 0
9: 9 2 2 2 NA
10: 10 1 1 0 0


impute(test_impute)

test_impute
ID snp1 snp2 snp3 snp4
1: 1 2 1 1 0
2: 2 2 2 0 0
3: 3 2 3 0 5
4: 4 2 1 2 0
5: 5 2 3 2 0
6: 6 2 1 1 0
7: 7 1 1 4 0
8: 8 2 1 0 0
9: 9 2 2 2 5
10: 10 1 1 0 0

Answer

You can't use dt1[, j] to grab a column from a data table.

dt1[, 1]
# [1] 1
dt1[, 2342]
# [1] 2342

Change DT[, j] to DT[[j]] to fix.

First some data:

set.seed(47)
n = 10
ncol = 10
dt1 = data.table(replicate(ncol, expr = {
    ifelse(runif(n) < 0.2, NA_real_, rpois(n, 10))
}))

impute1 = function(DT) {
    for (j in 2:ncol(DT))
        set(DT, which(is.na(DT[[j]])), j, mean(DT[[j]], na.rm = TRUE))
}

dt1
#     V1 V2 V3 V4 V5 V6 V7 V8 V9 V10
#  1:  6 11 10  7 13 10 12  8 13  12
#  2: 10  8 NA  7 16 10 10  8  5   5
#  3: 14  7  9  9 NA 13  9 NA 10  NA
#  4:  4  4 13 10  7 10 14  8 13  15
#  5:  7 NA  8 NA 12 NA 15 10 11   8
#  6:  6  9  7 15 NA  5 12 15 10   5
#  7:  4  9  5 NA 10 12  9  8 12  14
#  8: 12  8 NA  9  7 NA 11  4  8  11
#  9:  8 10 12 14 10 NA 11  9 10  10
# 10:  7  6 NA 13  8 14 11  6 10  NA
impute1(dt1)
dt1
#     V1 V2        V3   V4     V5       V6 V7        V8 V9 V10
#  1:  6 11 10.000000  7.0 13.000 10.00000 12  8.000000 13  12
#  2: 10  8  9.142857  7.0 16.000 10.00000 10  8.000000  5   5
#  3: 14  7  9.000000  9.0 10.375 13.00000  9  8.444444 10  10
#  4:  4  4 13.000000 10.0  7.000 10.00000 14  8.000000 13  15
#  5:  7  8  8.000000 10.5 12.000 10.57143 15 10.000000 11   8
#  6:  6  9  7.000000 15.0 10.375  5.00000 12 15.000000 10   5
#  7:  4  9  5.000000 10.5 10.000 12.00000  9  8.000000 12  14
#  8: 12  8  9.142857  9.0  7.000 10.57143 11  4.000000  8  11
#  9:  8 10 12.000000 14.0 10.000 10.57143 11  9.000000 10  10
# 10:  7  6  9.142857 13.0  8.000 14.00000 11  6.000000 10  10

Another option would be to pre-compute the column means. colMeans is quite fast, so this might be faster overall, especially with as many column as you have.

impute2 = function(DT) {
    means = colMeans(DT, na.rm = T)
    for (j in 2:ncol(DT))
        set(DT, which(is.na(DT[[j]])), j, means[j])
}