Analysis of Topic Dynamics in Web Search

Xuehua Shen, Susan Dumais, Eric Horvitz

Adaptive Systems and Interaction
Microsoft Research
Redmond, Washington 98052-6399

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We report on a study of topic dynamics for pages visited by a sample of people using MSN Search. We examine the predictive accuracies of probabilistic models of topic transitions for individuals and groups of users. We explore temporal dynamics by comparing the accuracy of the models for predicting topic transitions at increasingly distant times in the future. Finally, we discuss directions for applying models of search topic dynamics.

Keywords: Web search, topic analysis, topic transition, user modeling

In: Proceedings of WWW 2005, International World Wide Web Conference, May 10-14, 2005, Chiba, Japan.

More comprehensive technical report: Shen, X., Dumais, S. and Horvitz, E. (2005). Investigations of topic dynamics in Web search. Microsoft Research Technical Report TR-2005-20.

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