Integrating Neurophysiological Relevance Feedback in Intent Modeling for Information Retrieval

Jacucci, Giulio; Barral, Oswald; Daee, Pedram; Wenjel, Markus; Serim, Baris; Ruotsalo, Tuukka; Pluchino, Patrik; Freeman, Jonathan; Gamberini, Luciano; Kaski, Samuel and Blankertz, Benjamin. 2019. Integrating Neurophysiological Relevance Feedback in Intent Modeling for Information Retrieval. Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology, 70(9), pp. 917-930. ISSN 2330-1635 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

The use of implicit relevance feedback from neurophysiology could deliver effortless information retrieval. However, both computing neurophysiological responses and retrieving documents are characterized by uncertainty due to noisy signals and incomplete or inconsistent representations of the data. We present the first-of-its-kind, fully integrated information retrieval system that makes use of online implicit relevance feedback generated from brain activity as measured through electroencephalography (EEG), and eye movements. The findings of the evaluation experiment (N = 16) show
that we are able to compute online neurophysiology-based r elevance feedback with performance significantly better than chance in complex data domains and realistic search tasks. We contribute by demonstrating how to integrate in interactive intent
modeling this inherently noisy implicit relevance feedback combined with scarce explicit feedback. While experimental measures of task performance did not allow us to demonstrate how the classification outcomes translated into search task performance, the experiment proved that our approach is able to generate relevance feedback from brain signals and eye movements in a realistic scenario, thus providing promising implications for future work in neuroadaptive information retrieval (IR).

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This work has been supported by the European Commision (MindSee FP7-ICT; Grant Agreement #611570).


Information retrieval, Brain-computer interfaces, Neuro-physiology, Interactive intent modeling, Relevance feedback

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22 October 2018Accepted
12 March 2019Published Online
September 2019Published

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Date Deposited:

21 Nov 2018 16:14

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 16:59


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