Improving Collaborative Filtering's Rating Prediction Quality by Considering Shifts in Rating Practices

Dionisis Margaris and Costas Vassilakis
Proceedings of the 19th IEEE International Conference on business informatics (CBI17)

Abstract:
Users that populate ratings databases, such as IMDB, follow different marking practices, in the sense that some are stricter, while others are more lenient. This aspect has been captured by the most widely used similarity metrics in collaborative filtering, namely the Pearson Correlation and the Adjusted Cosine Similarity, which adjust each individual rating by the mean of the ratings entered by the specific user, when computing similarities. However, relying on the mean value presumes that the users' marking practices remain constant over time; in practice though, it is possible that a user's marking practices change over time, i.e. a user could start as strict and subsequently become lenient, or vice versa. In this work, we propose an approach to take into account marking practices shifts by (1) introducing the concept of dynamic user rating averages which follow the users' marking practices shifts, (2) presenting two alternative algorithms for computing a user's dynamic averages and (3) performing a comparative evaluation among these two algorithms and the classic static average (unique mean value) that the Pearson Correlation uses.

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