Using ontologies to model human navigation behavior in information networks: A study based on Wikipedia

Tracking #: 557-1763

Daniel Lamprecht
Markus Strohmaier

Responsible editor: 
Werner Kuhn

Submission type: 
Full Paper
The need to examine the behavior of different user groups is a fundamental requirement when building information systems. In this paper, we present Ontology-based Decentralized Search (OBDS), a novel method to model the navigation behavior of users equipped with different types of background knowledge. Ontology-based Decentralized Search combines ontologies and decentralized search, an established method for navigation in social networks, to model navigation behavior in information networks. The method uses ontologies as an explicit representation of background knowledge to inform the navigation process and guide it towards navigation targets. By using different ontologies, users equipped with different types of background knowledge can be represented. We demonstrate our method using four biomedical ontologies and their associated Wikipedia articles. We compare our simulation results with base line approaches and with results obtained from a user study and find that our method produces click paths that have properties similar to those originating from human navigators. The results suggest that our method can be used to model human navigation behavior in systems that are based on information networks such as Wikipedia. This paper makes the following contributions: (i) To the best of our knowledge, this is the first work to demonstrate the utility of ontologies in modeling human navigation and (ii) it yields new insights and understanding about the mechanisms of human navigation in information networks.
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Solicited Reviews:
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Review #1
By Hartwig Hochmair submitted on 02/Dec/2013
Review Comment:

All reviewer comments have been addressed.

On page 6 there seems to be a formatting issue with the second heading exceeding the column width.

Caption for fig. 6: I would write "...was limited to 20 and 40 steps, respectively, hence..."

Review #2
By Carsten Keßler submitted on 20/Dec/2013
Review Comment:

My comments for the previous version have all been addressed.