Nonlinear Latent Factorization by Embedding Multiple User Interests


Classical matrix factorization approaches to collaborative filtering learn a latent vector for each user and each item, and recommendations are scored via the similarity between two such vectors, which are of the same dimension. In this work, we are motivated by the intuition that a user is a much more complicated entity than any single item, and cannot be well described by the same representation. Hence, the variety of a user’s interests could be better captured by a more complex representation. We propose to model the user with a richer set of functions, specifically via a set of latent vectors, where each vector captures one of the user’s latent interests or tastes. The overall recommendation model is then nonlinear where the matching score between a user and a given item is the maximum matching score over each of the user’s latent interests with respect to the item’s latent representation. We describe a simple, general and efficient algorithm for learning such a model, and apply it to large scale, real world datasets from YouTube and Google Music, where our approach outperforms existing techniques.