Computer Science Department
School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University


FALCON: Feedback Adaptive Loop for Context-based Retrieval

Leejay Wu, Christos Faloutsos, Katia Sycara, Terry R. Payne

June 2000

Keywords: Databases, information retrieval, multimedia

Several methods currently exist that can perform relatively simple queries driven by relevance feedback on large multimedia databases. However, all these methods work only for vector spaces; that is, they require that objects be represented as vectors within feature spaces. Moreover, their implied query regions are typically convex. This research paper explains our solution.

We propose a novel method that is designed to handle disjunctive queries within metric spaces. The user provides weights for positive examples; our system ``learns'' the implied concept and returns similar objects. Our method differs from existing relevance-feedback methods that base themselves upon Euclidean or Mahalanobis metrics, as it facilitates learning even disjunctive, concave models within vector spaces, as well as arbitrary metric spaces.

Our main contributions are two-fold. Not only do we present a novel way to estimate the dissimilarity of an object to a set of desirable objects, but we support it with an algorithm that shows how to exploit metric indexing structures that support range queries to accelerate the search without incurring false dismissals. Our empirical results demonstrate that our method converges rapidly to excellent precision/recall, while outperforming sequential scanning by up to 200%.

27 pages

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