Content-based Recommender Systems: State of the Art and Trends Recommender Systems Handbook
edited by: Francesco Ricci, Lior Rokach, Bracha Shapira, Paul B. Kantor
Recommender systems have the effect of guiding users in a personalized way to interesting objects in a large space of possible options. Content-based recommendation systems try to recommend items similar to those a given user has liked in the past. Indeed, the basic process performed by a content-based recommender consists in matching up the attributes of a user profile in which preferences and interests are stored, with the attributes of a content object (item), in order to recommend to the user new interesting items. This chapter provides an overview of content-based recommender systems, with the aim of imposing a degree of order on the diversity of the different aspects involved in their design and implementation. The first part of the chapter presents the basic concepts and terminology of contentbased recommender systems, a high level architecture, and their main advantages and drawbacks. The second part of the chapter provides a review of the state of the art of systems adopted in several application domains, by thoroughly describing both classical and advanced techniques for representing items and user profiles. The most widely adopted techniques for learning user profiles are also presented. The last part of the chapter discusses trends and future research which might lead towards the next generation of systems, by describing the role of User Generated Content as a way for taking into account evolving vocabularies, and the challenge of feeding users with serendipitous recommendations, that is to say surprisingly interesting items that they might not have otherwise discovered.