Journal article

Abstraction of query auto completion logs for anonymity-preserving analysis

Unni Krishnan, Bodo Billerbeck, Alistair Moffat, Justin Zobel

Information Retrieval | Springer Verlag | Published : 2019


Query auto completion (QAC) is used in search interfaces to interactively offer a list of suggestions to users as they enter queries. The suggested completions are updated each time the user modifies their partial query, as they either add further keystrokes or interact directly with completions that have been offered. In this work we use a state model to capture the possible interactions that can occur in a QAC environment. Using this model, we show how an abstract QAC log can be derived from a sequence of QAC interactions; this log does not contain the actual characters entered, but records only the sequence of types of interaction, thus preserving user anonymity with extremely high confid..

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Funding Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the Microsoft Research Centre for Social Natural User Interfaces (SocialNUI) at The University of Melbourne.