Recommender systems are filters which suggest items or information that might be interesting to users. These systems analyze the past behavior of a user, build her profile that stores information about her interests, and exploit that profile to find potentially interesting items. The main limitation of this approach is that it may provide accurate but likely obvious suggestions, since recommended items are similar to those the user already knows. In this paper we investigate this issue, known as overspecialization or serendipity problem, by proposing a strategy that fosters the suggestion of surprisingly interesting items the user might not have otherwise discovered. The proposed strategy enriches a graph-based recommendation algorithm with background knowledge that allows the system to deeply understand the items it deals with. The hypothesis is that the infused knowledge could help to discover hidden correlations among items that go beyond simple feature similarity and therefore promote non obvious suggestions. Two evaluations are performed to validate this hypothesis: an in-vitro experiment on a subset of the hetrec2011-movielens-2k dataset, and a preliminary user study. Those evaluations show that the proposed strategy actually promotes non obvious suggestions, by narrowing the accuracy loss.

An Investigation on the Serendipity Problem in Recommender Systems

M. de Gemmis;P. Lops;G. Semeraro;C. Musto
2015-01-01

Abstract

Recommender systems are filters which suggest items or information that might be interesting to users. These systems analyze the past behavior of a user, build her profile that stores information about her interests, and exploit that profile to find potentially interesting items. The main limitation of this approach is that it may provide accurate but likely obvious suggestions, since recommended items are similar to those the user already knows. In this paper we investigate this issue, known as overspecialization or serendipity problem, by proposing a strategy that fosters the suggestion of surprisingly interesting items the user might not have otherwise discovered. The proposed strategy enriches a graph-based recommendation algorithm with background knowledge that allows the system to deeply understand the items it deals with. The hypothesis is that the infused knowledge could help to discover hidden correlations among items that go beyond simple feature similarity and therefore promote non obvious suggestions. Two evaluations are performed to validate this hypothesis: an in-vitro experiment on a subset of the hetrec2011-movielens-2k dataset, and a preliminary user study. Those evaluations show that the proposed strategy actually promotes non obvious suggestions, by narrowing the accuracy loss.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11586/67621
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