The research field of Information Retrieval (IR) has evolved significantly, expanding beyond traditional search to meet diverse user information needs. Recently, Large Language Models (LLMs) have demonstrated exceptional capabilities in text understanding, generation, and knowledge inference, opening up exciting avenues for IR research. LLMs not only facilitate generative retrieval but also offer improved solutions for user understanding, model evaluation, and user-system interactions. More importantly, the synergistic relationship among IR models, LLMs, and humans forms a new technical paradigm that is more powerful for information seeking. IR models provide real-time and relevant information, LLMs contribute internal knowledge, and humans play a central role of demanders and evaluators to the reliability of information services. Nevertheless, significant challenges exist, including computational costs, credibility concerns, domain-specific limitations, and ethical considerations. To thoroughly discuss the transformative impact of LLMs on IR research, the Chinese IR community conducted a strategic workshop in April 2023, yielding valuable insights. This paper provides a summary of the workshop's outcomes, including the rethinking of IR's core values, the mutual enhancement of LLMs and IR, the proposal of a novel IR technical paradigm, and open challenges.
By treating users' interactions as a user-item graph, graph learning models have been widely deployed in Collaborative Filtering(CF) based recommendation. Recently, researchers have introduced Graph Contrastive Learning(GCL) techniques into CF to alleviate the sparse supervision issue, which first constructs contrastive views by data augmentations and then provides self-supervised signals by maximizing the mutual information between contrastive views. Despite the effectiveness, we argue that current GCL-based recommendation models are still limited as current data augmentation techniques, either structure augmentation or feature augmentation. First, structure augmentation randomly dropout nodes or edges, which is easy to destroy the intrinsic nature of the user-item graph. Second, feature augmentation imposes the same scale noise augmentation on each node, which neglects the unique characteristics of nodes on the graph. To tackle the above limitations, we propose a novel Variational Graph Generative-Contrastive Learning(VGCL) framework for recommendation. Specifically, we leverage variational graph reconstruction to estimate a Gaussian distribution of each node, then generate multiple contrastive views through multiple samplings from the estimated distributions, which builds a bridge between generative and contrastive learning. Besides, the estimated variances are tailored to each node, which regulates the scale of contrastive loss for each node on optimization. Considering the similarity of the estimated distributions, we propose a cluster-aware twofold contrastive learning, a node-level to encourage consistency of a node's contrastive views and a cluster-level to encourage consistency of nodes in a cluster. Finally, extensive experimental results on three public datasets clearly demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed model.
Text Classification is one of the fundamental tasks in natural language processing, which requires an agent to determine the most appropriate category for input sentences. Recently, deep neural networks have achieved impressive performance in this area, especially Pre-trained Language Models (PLMs). Usually, these methods concentrate on input sentences and corresponding semantic embedding generation. However, for another essential component: labels, most existing works either treat them as meaningless one-hot vectors or use vanilla embedding methods to learn label representations along with model training, underestimating the semantic information and guidance that these labels reveal. To alleviate this problem and better exploit label information, in this paper, we employ Self-Supervised Learning (SSL) in model learning process and design a novel self-supervised Relation of Relation (R2) classification task for label utilization from a one-hot manner perspective. Then, we propose a novel Relation of Relation Learning Network (R2-Net) for text classification, in which text classification and R2 classification are treated as optimization targets. Meanwhile, triplet loss is employed to enhance the analysis of differences and connections among labels. Moreover, considering that one-hot usage is still short of exploiting label information, we incorporate external knowledge from WordNet to obtain multi-aspect descriptions for label semantic learning and extend R2-Net to a novel Description-Enhanced Label Embedding network (DELE) from a label embedding perspective. ...
Objective: Seizure prediction is of great importance to improve the life of patients. The focal point is to distinguish preictal states from interictal ones. With the development of machine learning, seizure prediction methods have achieved significant progress. However, the severe imbalance problem between preictal and interictal data still poses a great challenge, restricting the performance of classifiers. Data augmentation is an intuitive way to solve this problem. Existing data augmentation methods generate samples by overlapping or recombining data. The distribution of generated samples is limited by original data, because such transformations cannot fully explore the feature space and offer new information. As the epileptic EEG representation varies among seizures, these generated samples cannot provide enough diversity to achieve high performance on a new seizure. As a consequence, we propose a novel data augmentation method with diffusion model called DiffEEG. Methods: Diffusion models are a class of generative models that consist of two processes. Specifically, in the diffusion process, the model adds noise to the input EEG sample step by step and converts the noisy sample into output random noise, exploring the distribution of data by minimizing the loss between the output and the noise added. In the denoised process, the model samples the synthetic data by removing the noise gradually, diffusing the data distribution to outward areas and narrowing the distance between different clusters. Results: We compared DiffEEG with existing methods, and integrated them into three representative classifiers. The experiments indicate that DiffEEG could further improve the performance and shows superiority to existing methods. Conclusion: This paper proposes a novel and effective method to solve the imbalanced problem and demonstrates the effectiveness and generality of our method.
Collaborative filtering based recommendation learns users' preferences from all users' historical behavior data, and has been popular to facilitate decision making. R Recently, the fairness issue of recommendation has become more and more essential. A recommender system is considered unfair when it does not perform equally well for different user groups according to users' sensitive attributes~(e.g., gender, race). Plenty of methods have been proposed to alleviate unfairness by optimizing a predefined fairness goal or changing the distribution of unbalanced training data. However, they either suffered from the specific fairness optimization metrics or relied on redesigning the current recommendation architecture. In this paper, we study how to improve recommendation fairness from the data augmentation perspective. The recommendation model amplifies the inherent unfairness of imbalanced training data. We augment imbalanced training data towards balanced data distribution to improve fairness. The proposed framework is generally applicable to any embedding-based recommendation, and does not need to pre-define a fairness metric. Extensive experiments on two real-world datasets clearly demonstrate the superiority of our proposed framework. We publish the source code at https://github.com/newlei/FDA.
In most E-commerce platforms, whether the displayed items trigger the user's interest largely depends on their most eye-catching multimodal content. Consequently, increasing efforts focus on modeling multimodal user preference, and the pressing paradigm is to incorporate complete multimodal deep features of the items into the recommendation module. However, the existing studies ignore the mismatch problem between multimodal feature extraction (MFE) and user interest modeling (UIM). That is, MFE and UIM have different emphases. Specifically, MFE is migrated from and adapted to upstream tasks such as image classification. In addition, it is mainly a content-oriented and non-personalized process, while UIM, with its greater focus on understanding user interaction, is essentially a user-oriented and personalized process. Therefore, the direct incorporation of MFE into UIM for purely user-oriented tasks, tends to introduce a large number of preference-independent multimodal noise and contaminate the embedding representations in UIM. This paper aims at solving the mismatch problem between MFE and UIM, so as to generate high-quality embedding representations and better model multimodal user preferences. Towards this end, we develop a novel model, MEGCF. The UIM of the proposed model captures the semantic correlation between interactions and the features obtained from MFE, thus making a better match between MFE and UIM. More precisely, semantic-rich entities are first extracted from the multimodal data, since they are more relevant to user preferences than other multimodal information. These entities are then integrated into the user-item interaction graph. Afterwards, a symmetric linear Graph Convolution Network (GCN) module is constructed to perform message propagation over the graph, in order to capture both high-order semantic correlation and collaborative filtering signals.
Most modern recommender systems predict users preferences with two components: user and item embedding learning, followed by the user-item interaction modeling. By utilizing the auxiliary review information accompanied with user ratings, many of the existing review-based recommendation models enriched user/item embedding learning ability with historical reviews or better modeled user-item interactions with the help of available user-item target reviews. Though significant progress has been made, we argue that current solutions for review-based recommendation suffer from two drawbacks. First, as review-based recommendation can be naturally formed as a user-item bipartite graph with edge features from corresponding user-item reviews, how to better exploit this unique graph structure for recommendation? Second, while most current models suffer from limited user behaviors, can we exploit the unique self-supervised signals in the review-aware graph to guide two recommendation components better? To this end, in this paper, we propose a novel Review-aware Graph Contrastive Learning (RGCL) framework for review-based recommendation. Specifically, we first construct a review-aware user-item graph with feature-enhanced edges from reviews, where each edge feature is composed of both the user-item rating and the corresponding review semantics. This graph with feature-enhanced edges can help attentively learn each neighbor node weight for user and item representation learning. After that, we design two additional contrastive learning tasks (i.e., Node Discrimination and Edge Discrimination) to provide self-supervised signals for the two components in recommendation process. Finally, extensive experiments over five benchmark datasets demonstrate the superiority of our proposed RGCL compared to the state-of-the-art baselines.
Recent years have witnessed the great accuracy performance of graph-based Collaborative Filtering (CF) models for recommender systems. By taking the user-item interaction behavior as a graph, these graph-based CF models borrow the success of Graph Neural Networks (GNN), and iteratively perform neighborhood aggregation to propagate the collaborative signals. While conventional CF models are known for facing the challenges of the popularity bias that favors popular items, one may wonder "Whether the existing graph-based CF models alleviate or exacerbate popularity bias of recommender systems?" To answer this question, we first investigate the two-fold performances w.r.t. accuracy and novelty for existing graph-based CF methods. The empirical results show that symmetric neighborhood aggregation adopted by most existing graph-based CF models exacerbate the popularity bias and this phenomenon becomes more serious as the depth of graph propagation increases. Further, we theoretically analyze the cause of popularity bias for graph-based CF. Then, we propose a simple yet effective plugin, namely r-AdjNorm, to achieve an accuracy-novelty trade-off by controlling the normalization strength in the neighborhood aggregation process. Meanwhile, r-AdjNorm can be smoothly applied to the existing graph-based CF backbones without additional computation. Finally, experimental results on three benchmark datasets show that our proposed method can improve novelty without sacrificing accuracy under various graph-based CF backbones.