Who Likes What? — SplitLBI in Exploring Preferential Diversity of Ratings
In recent years, learning user preferences has received significant attention. A shortcoming of existing learning to rank work lies in that they do not take into account the multi-level hierarchies from social choice to individuals. In this paper, we propose a multi-level model which learns both the common preference or utility function over the population based on features of alternatives to-be-compared, and preferential diversity functions conditioning on user categories. Such a multi-level model, enables us to simultaneously learn a coarse-grained social preference function together with a fine-grained personalized diversity. It provides us prediction power for the choices of new users on new alternatives. The key algorithm in this paper is based on Split Linearized Bregman Iteration (SplitLBI) algorithm which generates a dynamic path from the common utility to personalized preferential diversity, at different levels of sparsity on personalization. A synchronized parallel version of SplitLBI is proposed to meet the needs of fast analysis of large-scale data. The validity of the methodology are supported by experiments with both simulated and real-world datasets such as movie and dining restaurant ratings which provides us a coarse-to-fine grained preference learning.