Exploiting a Map-Based Interface in Conversational Recommender Systems for Mobile Travelers

Exploiting a Map-Based Interface in Conversational Recommender Systems for Mobile Travelers

Francesco Ricci (Free University of Bolzano, Italy), Quang Nhat Nguyen (Hanoi University of Technology, Vietnam) and Olga Averjanova (Image Data Systems Ltd, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-818-5.ch005


Nowadays travel and tourism Web sites store and offer a large volume of travel related information and services. Furthermore, this huge amount of information can be easily accessed using mobile devices, such as a phone with mobile Internet connection capability. However, this information can easily overwhelm a user because of the large number of information items to be shown and the limited screen size in the mobile device. Recommender systems (RSs) are often used in conjunction with Web tools to effectively help users in accessing this overwhelming amount of information. These recommender systems can support the user in making a decision even when specific knowledge necessary to autonomously evaluate the offerings is not available. Recommender systems cope with the information overload problem by providing a user with personalized recommendations (i.e., a well chosen selection of the items contained in the repository), adapting this selection to the user’s needs and preferences in a particular usage context. In this chapter, the authors present a recommendation approach integrating a conversational preference acquisition technology based on “critiquing” with map visualization technologies to build a new map-based conversational mobile RS that can effectively and intuitively support travelers in finding their desired products and services. The results of the authors’ real-user study show that integrating map-based visualization and critiquing-based interaction in mobile RSs improves the system’s recommendation effectiveness, and increases the user satisfaction.

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