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Sensitivity of the Model size

To experimentally determine the impact of the model size on the quality of the prediction, we selectively varied the number of items to be used for similarity computation from 25 to 200 in an increment of 25. A model size of l means that we only considered l best similarity values for model building and later on used k of them for the prediction generation process, where k<l. Using the train data set we precomputed the item similarity using different model sizes and then used only the weighted sum prediction generation technique to provide the predictions. We then used the test data set to compute MAE and plotted the values. To compare with the full model size (i.e., model size = no. of items) we also ran the same test considering all similarity values and picked best k for prediction generation. We repeated the entire process for three different x values (train/test ratios). Figure 7 shows the plots at different x values. It can be observed from the plots that the MAE values get better as we increase the model size and the improvements are drastic at the beginning, but gradually slows down as we increase the model size. The most important observation from these plots is the high accuracy can be achieved using only a fraction of items. For example, at x=0.3 the full item-item scheme provided an MAE of 0.7873, but using a model size of only 25, we were able to achieve an MAE value of 0.842. At x=0.8 these numbers are even more appealing-for the full item-item we had an MAE of 0.726 but using a model size of only 25 we were able to obtain an MAE of 0.754, and using a model size of 50 the MAE was 0.738. In other words, at x=0.8 we were within $96\%$ and $98.3\%$ of the full item-item scheme's accuracy using only $1.9\%$ and $3\%$ of the items respectively!


  
Figure 7: Sensitivity of the model size on item-based collaborative filtering algorithm
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This model size sensitivity has important performance implications. It appears from the plots that it is useful to precompute the item similarities using only a fraction of items and yet possible to obtain reasonably good prediction quality.



 
next up previous
Next: Impact of the model Up: Experimental Evaluation Previous: Performance Results
Badrul M. Sarwar
2001-02-19