Temporal Dynamics and Information Retrieval

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Distinguished Colloquium Series Speaker
Friend Center 006
Host: David Blei
Susan Dumais (Microsoft Research)
Many digital resources, like the Web, are dynamic and ever-changing collections of information. However, most tools developed for interacting with Web content, such as browsers and search engines, focus on a single static snapshot of the information. In this talk, I will present analyses characterizing how Web content changes over time, how people re-visit Web pages over time, and how re-visitation patterns are influenced by changes in user intent and content. These results have implications for many aspects of information management including crawling policy, ranking and information extraction algorithms, result presentation, and system evaluation. I will describe a prototype that supports people in understanding how the information they interact with changes over time, and new information retrieval models that incorporate the temporal dynamics to improve ranking. Finally, I will conclude with speculations about "slow search" and an overview of challenges that need to be addressed to fully incorporate temporal dynamics into information systems.

Susan Dumais is a Distinguished Scientist and manager of the Context, Learning and User Experience for Search (CLUES) Group at Microsoft Research. Prior to joining Microsoft Research, she was at Bell Labs and Bellcore for many years, where she worked on Latent Semantic Analysis, interfaces for combining search and navigation, and organizational impacts of new technology. Her current research focuses on user modeling and personalization, context and search, temporal dynamics of information, and novel evaluation methods. She has worked closely with several Microsoft groups (Bing, Windows Desktop Search, SharePoint, and Office Online Help) on search-related innovations. Susan has published widely in the fields of information science, human-computer interaction and cognitive science, and holds several patents on novel retrieval algorithms and interfaces. Susan is an adjunct professor in the Information School at the University of Washington. She is Past-Chair of ACM's Special Interest Group in Information Retrieval (SIGIR), and serves on several editorial boards, technical program committees, and government panels. She was elected to the CHI Academy in 2005, an ACM Fellow in 2006, received the SIGIR Gerard Salton Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2009, and was elected to the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) in 2011. More information is available at her homepage, http://http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/um/people/sdumais/