|Title||Improving collaborative filtering’s rating prediction coverage in sparse datasets by exploiting the “friend of a friend” concept|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2020|
|Authors||Margaris D, Vassilakis C|
|Journal||International Journal of Big Data Intelligence|
|Keywords||collaborative filtering, Cosine Similarity, Evaluation, friend-of-a-friend, Pearson Correlation Coefficient, prediction accuracy, Recommender Systems, Sparse Datasets|
Collaborative filtering computes personalized recommendations by taking into account ratings expressed by users. Collaborative filtering algorithms firstly identify people having similar tastes, by examining the likeness of already entered ratings. Users with highly similar tastes are termed “near neighbours” and recommendations for a user are based on her near neighbours’ ratings. However, for a number of users no near neighbours can be found, a problem termed as the “gray sheep” problem. This problem is more intense in sparse datasets, i.e. datasets with relatively small number of ratings, compared to the number of users and items. In this work, we propose an algorithm for alleviating this problem by exploiting the friend of a friend (FOAF) concept. The proposed algorithm, CFfoaf, has been evaluated against eight widely used sparse datasets and under two widely used collaborative filtering correlation metrics, namely the Pearson Correlation Coefficient and the Cosine Similarity and has been proven to be particularly effective in increasing the percentage of users for which personalized recommendations can be formulated in the context of sparse datasets, while at the same time improving rating prediction quality.