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Two Methods for Enhancing Mutual Awareness in a Group Recommender System

By Anthony Jameson, Stephan Baldes, and Thomas Kleinbauer (2004)

Proceedings of the International Working Conference on Advanced Visual Interfaces, Gallipoli, Italy, S. 447–449.


We present a group recommender system for vacations that helps group members who are not able to communicate synchronously to specify their preferences collaboratively and to arrive at an agreement about an overall solution. The system’s design includes two innovations in visual user interfaces: 1. An interface for collaborative preference specification offers various ways in which one group member can view and perhaps copy the previously specified preferences of other users. This interface has been found to further mutual understanding and agreement. The same interface is used by the system to display recommended solutions and to visualize the extent to which a solution satisfies the preferences of the various group members. 2. In a novel application of animated characters, each character serves as a representative of a group member who is not currently available for communication. By responding with speech, facial expressions, and gesture to proposed solutions, a representative conveys to the current real user some key aspects of the corresponding real group member’s responses to a proposed solution. Taken together, these two aspects of the interface provide complementary and partly redundant means by which a group member can achieve awareness of the preferences and responses of other group members: an abstract, complete, graphical representation and a concrete, selective, human-like representation. By allowing users to choose flexibly which representation they will attend to under what circumstances, we aim to move beyond the usual debates about the relative merits of these two general types of representation.



Full Publication:  [PDF File]

BibTeX entry

  year = {2004},
  author = {{Jameson}, Anthony and
            {Baldes}, Stephan and
            {Kleinbauer}, Thomas},
  title = {Two Methods for Enhancing Mutual Awareness in a Group
    Recommender System},
  booktitle = {Proceedings of the International Working Conference on
  Advanced Visual Interfaces},
  address = {Gallipoli, Italy},
  pages = {447--449}}