findInterval: Find Interval Numbers or Indices

Description Usage Arguments Details Value Author(s) See Also Examples

Description

Given a vector of non-decreasing breakpoints in vec, find the interval containing each element of x; i.e., if i <- findInterval(x,v), for each index j in x v[i[j]] ≤ x[j] < v[i[j] + 1] where v := - Inf, v[N+1] := + Inf, and N <- length(v). At the two boundaries, the returned index may differ by 1, depending on the optional arguments rightmost.closed and all.inside.

Usage

 1 2 findInterval(x, vec, rightmost.closed = FALSE, all.inside = FALSE, left.open = FALSE)

Arguments

 x numeric. vec numeric, sorted (weakly) increasingly, of length N, say. rightmost.closed logical; if true, the rightmost interval, vec[N-1] .. vec[N] is treated as closed, see below. all.inside logical; if true, the returned indices are coerced into 1,...,N-1, i.e., 0 is mapped to 1 and N to N-1. left.open logical; if true all the intervals are open at left and closed at right; in the formulas below, ≤ should be swapped with < (and > with ≥), and rightmost.closed means ‘leftmost is closed’. This may be useful, e.g., in survival analysis computations.

Details

The function findInterval finds the index of one vector x in another, vec, where the latter must be non-decreasing. Where this is trivial, equivalent to apply( outer(x, vec, ">="), 1, sum), as a matter of fact, the internal algorithm uses interval search ensuring O(n * log(N)) complexity where n <- length(x) (and N <- length(vec)). For (almost) sorted x, it will be even faster, basically O(n).

This is the same computation as for the empirical distribution function, and indeed, findInterval(t, sort(X)) is identical to n * Fn(t; X,..,X[n]) where Fn is the empirical distribution function of X,..,X[n].

When rightmost.closed = TRUE, the result for x[j] = vec[N] ( = max(vec)), is N - 1 as for all other values in the last interval.

left.open = TRUE is occasionally useful, e.g., for survival data. For (anti-)symmetry reasons, it is equivalent to using “mirrored” data, i.e., the following is always true:

 1 2 3 4 identical( findInterval( x, v, left.open= TRUE, ...) , N - findInterval(-x, -v[N:1], left.open=FALSE, ...) )

where N <- length(vec) as above.

Value

vector of length length(x) with values in 0:N (and NA) where N <- length(vec), or values coerced to 1:(N-1) if and only if all.inside = TRUE (equivalently coercing all x values inside the intervals). Note that NAs are propagated from x, and Inf values are allowed in both x and vec.

Martin Maechler