This paper presents the metric-frequency calculator (MF Calculator), an online application to analyze similarity. The MF Calculator implements a metric-frequency similarity algorithm for the quantitative assessment of similarity in ill-structured data sets. It is widely applicable as it can be used with nominal, ordinal, or interval data when there is little prior control over the variables to be observed regarding number or content. The MF Calculator generates a proximity matrix in CSV, XML or DOC format that can be used as input to traditional statistical techniques such as hierarchical clustering, additive trees, or multidimensional scaling. The MF Calculator also displays a graphical representation of outputs using additive similarity trees. A simulated example illustrates the implementation of the MF calculator. An additional example with real data is presented, in order to illustrate the potential of combining the MF Calculator with cluster analysis. The MF Calculator is a user-friendly tool available free of charge. It can be accessed from http://mfcalculator.celiasales.org/Calculator.aspx, and it can be used by non-experts from a wide range of social sciences.

Additive similarity trees, Feature similarity, Ill-structured data, Metric distance, Metric similarity, Metric-frequency calculator, Software implementation
hdl.handle.net/1765/82615
Journal of Statistical Software (Online)
Erasmus University Rotterdam

Sales, C.M.D, Wakker, P.P, Alves, P.C.G, & Faísca, L. (2015). MF calculator: A web-based application for analyzing similarity. Journal of Statistical Software (Online), 65(CODESNIPPET 2), 1–10. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/82615