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Implementing Click-through Relevance Ranking in Solr and LucidWorks Enterprise

This talk will present what are click-through events and how to process them with LucidWorks Enterprise. This innovative technique puts powerful search and relevancy at your fingertips -- at a fraction of the time and effort required to program them yourself with native Apache Solr.

Implementing Click-through Relevance Ranking in Solr and LucidWorks Enterprise

  1. 1. Implementing Click-through Relevance Ranking in Solr and LucidWorks Enterprise Andrzej Białecki
  2. 2. About the speaker§  Started using Lucene in 2003 (1.2-dev…)§  Created Luke – the Lucene Index Toolbox§  Apache Nutch, Hadoop, Solr committer, Lucene PMC member§  Apache Nutch PMC Chair§  LucidWorks Enterprise developer 3
  3. 3. Agenda§  Click-through concepts§  Apache Solr click-through scoring •  Model •  Integration options§  LucidWorks Enterprise •  Click Scoring Framework •  Unsupervised feedback 4
  4. 4. Click-through concepts 5
  5. 5. Improving relevance of top-N hits§  N < 10, first page counts the most •  N = 3, first three results count the most§  Many techniques available in Solr / Lucene •  Indexing-time §  text analysis, morphological analysis, synonyms, ... •  Query-time §  boosting, rewriting, synonyms, DisMax, function queries … •  Editorial ranking (QueryElevationComponent)§  No direct feedback from users on relevance L§  What user actions do we know about? •  Search, navigation, click-through, other actions… 6
  6. 6. Query log and click-through eventsClick-through: user selects an item at a among a for a query§  Why this information may be useful •  “Indicates” users interest in a selected result •  “Implies” that the result is relevant to the query •  “Significant” when low-ranking results selected •  “May be” considered as users implicit feedback§  Why this information may be useless •  Many strong assumptions about user’s intent •  “Average user’s behavior” could be a fiction§  “Careful with that axe, Eugene” 7
  7. 7. Click-through in context§  Query log, click positions, click intervals provide a context§  Source of spell-checking data •  Query reformulation until a click event occurs§  Click events per user – total or during a session •  Building a user profile (e.g. topics of interest)§  Negative click events •  User did NOT click the top 3 results è demote?§  Clicks of all users for an item (or a query, or both) •  Item popularity or relevance to queries§  Goal: analysis and modification of result ranking 8
  8. 8. Click to add title…§  Clicking through == adding labels!§  Collaborative filtering, recommendation system§  Topic discovery & opinion mining§  Tracking the topic / opinion drift over time§  Click-stream is sparse and noisy – caveat emptor •  Changing intent – “hey, this reminds me of smth…” •  Hidden intent – remember the “miserable failure”? •  No intent at all – “just messing around” 9
  9. 9. What’s in the click-through data?§  Query log, with unique id=f(user,query,time)! •  User id (or group) •  Query (+ facets, filters, origin, etc) •  Number of returned results •  Context (suggestions, autocomplete, “more like this” terms …)§  Click-through log •  Query id , document id, click position & click timestamp§  What data we would like to get? •  Map of docId => §  Aggregated queries, aggregated users §  Weight factor f(clickCount, positions, intervals) 10
  10. 10. Other aggregations / reports§  User profiles •  Document types / categories viewed most often •  Population profile for a document •  User’s sophistication, education level, locations, interests, vices … (scary!)§  Query re-formulations •  Spell-checking or “did you mean”§  Corpus of the most useful queries •  Indicator for caching of results and documents§  Zeitgeist – general user interest over time 11
  11. 11. Documents with click-through data original document document with click-through data -  documentWeight -  documentWeight -  field1 : weight1 -  field1 : weight1 -  field2 : weight2 -  field2 : weight2 -  field3 : weight3 -  field3 : weight3 -  labels : weight4 -  users : weight5§  Modified document and field weights§  Added / modified fields •  Top-N labels aggregated from successful queries •  User “profile” aggregated from click-throughs§  Changing in time – new clicks arrive 12
  12. 12. Desired effects§  Improvement in relevance of top-N results •  Non-query specific: f(clickCount) (or “popularity”) •  Query-specific: f([query] Ÿ [labels]) •  User-specific (personalized ranking): f([userProfile] Ÿ [docProfile])§  Observed phenomena •  Top-10 better matches user expectations •  Inversion of ranking (oft-clicked > TF-IDF) •  Positive feedback clicked -> highly ranked -> clicked -> even higher ranked … 13
  13. 13. Undesired effects§  Unbounded positive feedback •  Top-10 dominated by popular but irrelevant results, self-reinforcing due to user expectations about the Top-10 results§  Everlasting effects of past click-storms •  Top-10 dominated by old documents once extremely popular for no longer valid reasons§  Off-topic (noisy) labels§  Conclusions: •  f(click data) should be sub-linear •  f(click data, time) should discount older clicks •  f(click data) should be sanitized and bounded 14
  14. 14. Implementation 15
  15. 15. Click-through scoring in Solr§  Not out of the box – you need: •  A component to log queries •  A component to record click-throughs •  A tool to correlate and aggregate the logs •  A tool to manage click-through history§  …let’s (conveniently) assume the above is handled by a user-facing app… and we got that map of docId => click data§  How to integrate this map into a Solr index? 16
  16. 16. Via ExternalFileField§  Pros: •  Simple to implement •  Easy to update – no need to do full re-indexing (just core reload)§  Cons: •  Only docId => field : boost •  No user-generated labels attached to docs L L§  Still useful if a simple “popularity” metric is sufficient 17
  17. 17. Via full re-index§  If the corpus is small, or click data updates infrequent… just re-index everything§  Pros: •  Relatively easy to implement – join source docs and click data by docId + reindex •  Allows adding all click data, including labels as searchable text§  Cons: •  Infeasible for larger corpora or frequent updates, time-wise and cost-wise 18
  18. 18. Via incremental field updates§  Oops! Under construction, come back later…§  … much later … •  Some discussions on the mailing lists •  No implementation yet, design in flux 19
  19. 19. Via ParallelReader click data main indexc1, c2, ... D1 D4 1 f1, f2, ... D4 c1, c2, ... D4 1 f1, f2, ...c1, c2, ... D2 D2 2 f1, f2, ... D2 c1, c2, ... D2 2 f1, f2, ...c1, c2, ... D3 D6 3 f1, f2, ... D6 c1, c2, ... D6 3 f1, f2, ...c1, c2, ... D4 D1 4 f1, f2, ... D1 c1, c2, ... D1 4 f1, f2, ...c1, c2, ... D5 D3 5 f1, f2, ... D3 c1, c2, ... D3 5 f1, f2, ...c1, c2,… D6 D5 6 f1, f2, … D5 c1, c2,… D5 6 f1, f2, …§  Pros: •  All click data (e.g. searchable labels) can be added§  Cons: •  Complicated and fragile (rebuild on every update) §  Though only the click index needs a rebuild •  No tools to manage this parallel index in Solr 20
  20. 20. LucidWorks Enterpriseimplementation 21
  21. 21. Click Scoring Framework§  LucidWorks Enterprise feature§  Click-through log collection & analysis •  Query logs and click-through logs (when using Lucids search UI) •  Analysis of click-through events •  Maintenance of historical click data •  Creating of query phrase dictionary (-> autosuggest)§  Modification of ranking based on click events: •  Modifies query rewriting & field boosts •  Adds top query phrases associated with a document 0.13 luke:0.5,stempel:0.3,murmur:0.2 22
  22. 22. Aggregation of click events§  Relative importance of clicks: •  Clicks on lower ranking documents more important §  Plateau after the second page •  The more clicks the more important a document §  Sub-linear to counter click-storms •  “Reading time” weighting factor §  Intervals between clicks on the same result list§  Association of query terms with target document •  Top-N successful queries considered •  Top-N frequent phrases (shingles) extracted from queries, sanitized 23
  23. 23. Aggregation of click-through history§  Needs to reflect document popularity over time •  Should react quickly to bursts (topics of the day) •  Has to avoid documents being “stuck” at the top due to the past popularity§  Solution: half-life decay model •  Adjustable period & rate •  Adjustable length of history (affects smoothing) time 24
  24. 24. Click scoring in practicel  Query log and click log generated by the LucidWorks search UI l  Logs and intermediate data files in plain text, well-documented formats and locationsl  Scheduled click-through analysis activityl  Final click data – open formats l  Boost factor plus top phrases per document (plain text)l  Click data is integrated with the main index l  No need to re-index the main corpus (ParallelReader trick) l  Where are the incremental field updates when you need them ?!!! l  Works also with Solr replication (rsync or Java) 25
  25. 25. Click Scoring – added fieldsl  Fields added to the main index l  click – a field with a constant value of 1, but with boost relative to aggregated click history l  Indexed, with norms l  click_val - “string” (not analyzed) field containing numerical value of boost l  Stored, indexed, not analyzed l  click_terms – top-N terms and phrases from queries that caused click events on this document l  Stored, indexed and analyzed 26
  26. 26. Click scoring – query modifications§  Using click in queries (or DisMax’s bq) •  Constant term “1” with boost value •  Example: term1 OR click:1§  Using click_val in function queries •  Floating point boost value as a string •  Example: term1 OR _val_:click_val§  Using click_terms in queries (e.g. DisMax) •  Add click_terms to the list of query fields (qf) in DisMax handler (default in /lucid) •  Matches on click_terms will be scored as other matches on other fields 27
  27. 27. Click Scoring – impactl  Configuration options of the click analysis tools l  max normalization l  The highest value of click boost will be 1, all other values are proportionally lower l  Controlled max impact on any given result list l  total normalization l  Total value of all boosts will be constant l  Limits the total impact of click scoring on all lists of results l raw – whatever value is in the click datal  Controlled impact is the key for improving the top–N results 28
  28. 28. LucidWorks Enterprise –Unsupervised Feedback 29
  29. 29. Unsupervised feedbackl  LucidWorks Enterprise featurel  Unsupervised – no need to train the systeml  Enhances quality of top-N results l  Well-researched topic l  Several strategies for keyword extraction and combining with the original queryl  Automatic feedback loop: l  Submit original query and take the top 5 docs l  Extracts some keywords (“important” terms) l  Combine original query with extracted keywords l  Submit the modified query & return results 30
  30. 30. Unsupervised feedback optionsl  “Enhance precision” option (tighter fit) precision l  Extracted terms are AND-ed with the original query dog AND (cat OR mouse) l  Filters out documents less similar to recall the original top-5l  “Enhance recall” option (more documents) precision l  Extracted terms are OR-ed with the original query dog OR cat OR mouse recall l  Adds more documents loosely similar to the original top-5 31
  31. 31. Summary & QA§  Click-through concepts§  Apache Solr click-through scoring •  Model •  Integration options§  LucidWorks Enterprise •  Click Scoring Framework •  Unsupervised feedback§  More questions? 32

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This talk will present what are click-through events and how to process them with LucidWorks Enterprise. This innovative technique puts powerful search and relevancy at your fingertips -- at a fraction of the time and effort required to program them yourself with native Apache Solr.


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