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Article
Publication date: 7 November 2016

Amir Hosein Keyhanipour, Behzad Moshiri, Maryam Piroozmand, Farhad Oroumchian and Ali Moeini

Learning to rank algorithms inherently faces many challenges. The most important challenges could be listed as high-dimensionality of the training data, the dynamic nature…

Abstract

Purpose

Learning to rank algorithms inherently faces many challenges. The most important challenges could be listed as high-dimensionality of the training data, the dynamic nature of Web information resources and lack of click-through data. High dimensionality of the training data affects effectiveness and efficiency of learning algorithms. Besides, most of learning to rank benchmark datasets do not include click-through data as a very rich source of information about the search behavior of users while dealing with the ranked lists of search results. To deal with these limitations, this paper aims to introduce a novel learning to rank algorithm by using a set of complex click-through features in a reinforcement learning (RL) model. These features are calculated from the existing click-through information in the data set or even from data sets without any explicit click-through information.

Design/methodology/approach

The proposed ranking algorithm (QRC-Rank) applies RL techniques on a set of calculated click-through features. QRC-Rank is as a two-steps process. In the first step, Transformation phase, a compact benchmark data set is created which contains a set of click-through features. These feature are calculated from the original click-through information available in the data set and constitute a compact representation of click-through information. To find most effective click-through feature, a number of scenarios are investigated. The second phase is Model-Generation, in which a RL model is built to rank the documents. This model is created by applying temporal difference learning methods such as Q-Learning and SARSA.

Findings

The proposed learning to rank method, QRC-rank, is evaluated on WCL2R and LETOR4.0 data sets. Experimental results demonstrate that QRC-Rank outperforms the state-of-the-art learning to rank methods such as SVMRank, RankBoost, ListNet and AdaRank based on the precision and normalized discount cumulative gain evaluation criteria. The use of the click-through features calculated from the training data set is a major contributor to the performance of the system.

Originality/value

In this paper, we have demonstrated the viability of the proposed features that provide a compact representation for the click through data in a learning to rank application. These compact click-through features are calculated from the original features of the learning to rank benchmark data set. In addition, a Markov Decision Process model is proposed for the learning to rank problem using RL, including the sets of states, actions, rewarding strategy and the transition function.

Details

International Journal of Web Information Systems, vol. 12 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1744-0084

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 September 2011

Mohammad Reza Badello, Behzad Moshiri, Babak N. Araabi and Hamed Tebianian

The purpose of this paper is to design and implement a landmine detection robot (Venus) equipped with three electromagnetic sensors and controlled by ordered weighted…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to design and implement a landmine detection robot (Venus) equipped with three electromagnetic sensors and controlled by ordered weighted averaging (OWA) sensor fusion approach. Higher numbers of detected mines in a fixed time interval and lower total power consumption are the achieved goals of this research.

Design/methodology/approach

OWA sensor fusion is exploited for data combination in this paper. Unlike most other landmine detection robots, Venus has three electromagnetic sensors, the positions of which can be adjusted according to the environmental conditions. Also, a novel approach for OWA weight dedication using Gaussian distribution function is applied and the whole idea is evaluated practically in several randomly mined fields. Finally, for better evaluation, performance of Venus is compared with the other two landmine detection robots.

Findings

The simulation and experimental results proved that in a predetermined interval of time, not only total energy consumption is reduced, but also by expanding the surface and the depth of influence of electromagnetic waves, the number of detected mines is considerably raised.

Social implications

In contrast to the regular demining process, which is relatively expensive and complicated, the landmine detection method proposed in this research is surprisingly simple, cost effective, and efficient. Therefore, it may be attractive for every company or organization in this field of research.

Originality/value

The paper describes research which implements and evaluates a novel control approach based on OWA sensor fusion method, a new way of using Gaussian distribution function for determining OWA weights, and also an adaptive physical configuration for sensors based on environmental conditions.

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