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Jointly integrating current context and social influence for improving recommendation

Meriam Bambia 1
1 IRIT-IRIS - Recherche d’Information et Synthèse d’Information
IRIT - Institut de recherche en informatique de Toulouse
Abstract : Due to the diversity of alternative contents to choose and the change of users' preferences, real-time prediction of users' preferences in certain users' circumstances becomes increasingly hard for recommender systems. However, most existing context-aware approaches use only current time and location separately, and ignore other contextual information on which users' preferences may undoubtedly depend (e.g. weather, occasion). Furthermore, they fail to jointly consider these contextual information with social interactions between users. On the other hand, solving classic recommender problems (e.g. no seen items by a new user known as cold start problem, and no enough co-rated items with other users with similar preference as sparsity problem) is of significance importance since it is drawn by several works. In our thesis work, we propose a context-based approach that leverages jointly current contextual information and social influence in order to improve items recommendation. In particular, we propose a probabilistic model that aims to predict the relevance of items in respect with the user's current context. We considered several current context elements such as time, location, occasion, week day, location and weather. In order to avoid strong probabilities which leads to sparsity problem, we used Laplace smoothing technique. On the other hand, we argue that information from social relationships has potential influence on users' preferences. Thus, we assume that social influence depends not only on friends' ratings but also on social similarity between users. We proposed a social-based model that estimates the relevance of an item in respect with the social influence around the user on the relevance of this item. The user-friend social similarity information may be established based on social interactions between users and their friends (e.g. recommendations, tags, comments). Therefore, we argue that social similarity could be integrated using a similarity measure. Social influence is then jointly integrated based on user-friend similarity measure in order to estimate users' preferences. We conducted a comprehensive effectiveness evaluation on real dataset crawled from Pinhole social TV platform. This dataset includes viewer-video accessing history and viewers' friendship networks. In addition, we collected contextual information for each viewer-video accessing history captured by the plat form system. The platform system captures and records the last contextual information to which the viewer is faced while watching such a video. In our evaluation, we adopt Time-aware Collaborative Filtering, Time-Dependent Profile and Social Network-aware Matrix Factorization as baseline models. The evaluation focused on two recommendation tasks. The first one is the video list recommendation task and the second one is video rating prediction task. We evaluated the impact of each viewing context element in prediction performance. We tested the ability of our model to solve data sparsity and viewer cold start recommendation problems. The experimental results highlighted the effectiveness of our model compared to the considered baselines. Experimental results demonstrate that our approach outperforms time-aware and social network-based approaches. In the sparsity and cold start tests, our approach returns consistently accurate predictions at different values of data sparsity.
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Meriam Bambia. Jointly integrating current context and social influence for improving recommendation. Artificial Intelligence [cs.AI]. Université Paul Sabatier - Toulouse III, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017TOU30110⟩. ⟨tel-01914285⟩

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