Hippalus: Preference-enriched Faceted Exploration
In this work we describe and evaluate Hippalus, a system that offers exploratory search enriched with preferences. Hippalus supports the very popular interaction model of Faceted and Dynamic Taxonomies (FDT), enriched with user actions which allow the users to express their preferences. The underlying preference framework allows expressing preferences over attributes (facets), whose values can be hierarchically valued and/or multi-valued, and offers automatic conflict resolution. To evaluate the system we conducted a user study with a number of tasks related to a "car selection" scenario. The results of the comparative evaluation, with and without the preference actions, were impressive: with the preference-enriched FDT, all users completed all the tasks successfully in 1/3 of the time, performing 1/3 of the actions compared to the plain FDT. Moreover all users (either plain or expert) preferred the preference enriched interface. The benefits are also evident through various other metrics.