When composing multiple preferences characterizing the most suitable results for a user, several issues may arise. Indeed, preferences can be partially contradictory, suffer from a mismatch with the level of detail of the actual data, and even lack natural properties such as transitivity. In this paper we formally investigate the problem of retrieving the best results complying with multiple preferences expressed in a logic-based language. Data are stored in relational tables with taxonomic domains, which allow the specification of preferences also over values that are more generic than those in the database. In this framework, we introduce two operators that rewrite preferences for enforcing the important properties of transitivity, which guarantees soundness of the result, and specificity, which solves all conflicts among preferences. Although, as we show, these two properties cannot be fully achieved together, we use our operators to identify the only two alternatives that ensure transitivity and minimize the residual conflicts. Building on this finding, we devise a technique, based on an original heuristics, for selecting the best results according to the two possible alternatives. We finally show, with a number of experiments over both synthetic and real-world datasets, the effectiveness and practical feasibility of the overall approach.

Preference queries over taxonomic domains

Martinenghi D.;Torlone R.
2021

Abstract

When composing multiple preferences characterizing the most suitable results for a user, several issues may arise. Indeed, preferences can be partially contradictory, suffer from a mismatch with the level of detail of the actual data, and even lack natural properties such as transitivity. In this paper we formally investigate the problem of retrieving the best results complying with multiple preferences expressed in a logic-based language. Data are stored in relational tables with taxonomic domains, which allow the specification of preferences also over values that are more generic than those in the database. In this framework, we introduce two operators that rewrite preferences for enforcing the important properties of transitivity, which guarantees soundness of the result, and specificity, which solves all conflicts among preferences. Although, as we show, these two properties cannot be fully achieved together, we use our operators to identify the only two alternatives that ensure transitivity and minimize the residual conflicts. Building on this finding, we devise a technique, based on an original heuristics, for selecting the best results according to the two possible alternatives. We finally show, with a number of experiments over both synthetic and real-world datasets, the effectiveness and practical feasibility of the overall approach.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11311/1203128
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