Quote:
Originally Posted by dbl001
Can you comment on using the AUC metric for assessing the quality of a classifier?
Is this the best metric for assessing classifiers?
What is the mathematical basis for AUC?
Thanks!

The AUC can roughly be described as measuring the overall tradeoff between falsepositive and falsenegative in binary classification.
Mathematically, the AUC is also equivalent to measuring the pairwise ranking accuracy introduced from the (decision value of the) classifier.
This paper
http://www.icml2011.org/papers/567_icmlpaper.pdf is a pretty recent study on the connection between AUC and other metrics (such as the usual 0/1 error).
Hope this helps.