Presentation at the Heterogeneous Recommendation Workshop at the ACM Recommender Systems Conference 2010.
Providing relevant recommendations requires access to user profile data. Current social networking ecosystems allow third party services to request user authorisation for accessing profile data, thus enabling cross-domain recommendation. However these ecosystems create user lock-in and social networking data silos, as the profile data is neither portable nor interoperable. We argue that innovations in reconciling heterogeneous data sources must be also be matched by innovations in architecture design and recommender methodology. We present and qualitatively evaluate an architecture for privacy-enabled user profile portability, which is based on technologies from the emerging Web of Data (FOAF, WebIDs and the Web Access Control vocabulary). The proposed architecture enables the creation of a universal “private by default” ecosystem with interoperability of user profile data. The privacy of the user is protected by allowing multiple data providers to host their part of the user profile. This provides an incentive for more users to make profile data from different domains available for recommendations.