POOLSIDE: An Online Probabilistic Knowledge Base for Shopping Decision Support


​Even though a wide variety of shopping decision support systems have been developed, none of them provides with the on-target service that can recommend products based on explicit user requirements. The challenge of providing with such service results from the observation that the userspecified requirement may involve not only the basic attributes of products but their multi-aspect and more obscure concepts. For instance, a user may ask the system to recommend a mobile phone priced around 500$ and with high performance. The concept of high performance is composite and obscure. It should be evaluated on various factors including memory size, CPU frequency and number, and most importantly user comments. To this end, we propose an online knowledge base (KB) POOLSIDE that can support real-time decision making. POOLSIDE has a natural language interface and uses Deepdive, the state-of-the-art KB tool, to facilitate reasoning about obscure concepts. Our major contributions can be summarized as follows:
        • We develop the demo system POOLSIDE that can recommend products based on explicit user requirements in real-time . We outline the major challenges of building POOLSIDE and present corresponding solutions;
        • We demo how POOLSIDE interacts with users and provides with high-quality product recommendations with high efficiency;
        • We identify two directions for future research on probabilistic knowledge base.

System Overview


Query Demonstration

The demonstration consists of three parts: query interface, recommendation listing and product detail presentation. The demo will use the KB system we have built for the mobile phone products. The query interface accepts a user query. The interface of recommendation listing lists the products satisfying a user query and orders them by user-specified attributes/concepts. Finally, clicking a product hyperlink on the page of recommendation listing would open a new page detailing its major properties and strengths/weaknesses compared with other popular products.