Adapting to User Preference Changes in Interactive Recommendation / 4268
Negar Hariri, Bamshad Mobasher, Robin Burke
Recommender systems have become essential tools in many application areas as they help alleviate information overload by tailoring their recommendations to users' personal preferences. Users' interests in items, however, may change over time depending on their current situation. Without considering the current circumstances of a user, recommendations may match the general preferences of the user, but they may have small utility for the user in his/her current situation. We focus on designing systems that interact with the user over a number of iterations and at each step receive feedback from the user in the form of a reward or utility value for the recommended items. The goal of the system is to maximize the sum of obtained utilities over each interaction session. We use a multi-armed bandit strategy to model this online learning problem and we propose techniques for detecting changes in user preferences. The recommendations are then generated based on the most recent preferences of a user. Our evaluation results indicate that our method can improve the existing bandit algorithms by considering the sudden variations in the user's feedback behavior.