Propagating user interests in ontology-based user model

Cena, Federica; Likavec, Silvia and Osborne, Francesco (2011). Propagating user interests in ontology-based user model. In: AI*IA 2011: Artificial Intelligence Around Man and Beyond: XIIth International Conference of the Italian Association for Artificial Intelligence, Palermo, Italy, September 15-17, 2011. Proceedings, Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Springer, pp. 299–311.



In this paper we address the problem of propagating user interests in ontology-based user models. Our ontology-based user model (OBUM) is devised as an overlay over the domain ontology. Using ontologies as the basis of the user profile allows the initial user behavior to be matched with existing concepts in the domain ontology. Such ontological approach to user profiling has been proven successful in addressing the cold-start problem in recommender systems, since it allows for propagation from a small number of initial concepts to other related domain concepts by exploiting the ontological structure of the domain. The main contribution of the paper is the novel algorithm for propagation of user interests which takes into account i) the ontological structure of the domain and, in particular, the level at which each domain item is found in the ontology; ii) the type of feedback provided by the user, and iii) the amount of past feedback provided for a certain domain object.

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