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Monochromatic and Bichromatic Reverse Top-k Queries
August 2011 (vol. 23 no. 8)
pp. 1215-1229
Akrivi Vlachou, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim
Christos Doulkeridis, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim
Yannis Kotidis, Athens University of Economics and Business, Athens
Kjetil Nørvåg, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim
Nowadays, most applications return to the user a limited set of ranked results based on the individual user's preferences, which are commonly expressed through top-k queries. From the perspective of a manufacturer, it is imperative that her products appear in the highest ranked positions for many different user preferences, otherwise the product is not visible to potential customers. In this paper, we define a novel query type, namely the reverse top-k query, that covers this requirement: “Given a potential product, which are the user preferences that make this product belong to the top-k query result set?.” Reverse top-k queries are essential for manufacturers to assess the impact of their products in the market based on the competition. We formally define reverse top-k queries and introduce two versions of the query, monochromatic and bichromatic. First, we provide a geometric interpretation of the monochromatic reverse top-k query to acquire an intuition of the solution space. Then, we study in detail the case of bichromatic reverse top-k query, and we propose two techniques for query processing, namely an efficient threshold-based algorithm and an algorithm based on materialized reverse top-k views. Our experimental evaluation demonstrates the efficiency of our techniques.

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Index Terms:
Reverse top-k query, top-k query, user preferences.
Citation:
Akrivi Vlachou, Christos Doulkeridis, Yannis Kotidis, Kjetil Nørvåg, "Monochromatic and Bichromatic Reverse Top-k Queries," IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering, vol. 23, no. 8, pp. 1215-1229, Aug. 2011, doi:10.1109/TKDE.2011.50
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