Recommendation Discovery

I have found this very interesting aspect of recommender systems at

Discover things you didn't know you where looking for.


Why Discovery:

  • Discovery is an alternative to search
  • Discovery is finding things on the Internet that you couldn't find on your own
  • Discovery is about consumers experiencing something magical and entertaining with every click
  • Discovery is a more natural way to put great products and content in front of customers

Aggregate Knowledge pioneered the Discovery category in 2005. Our founders recognized there was a huge missing link in the way people searched and found information on the web. As founders of one of the first social networking sites,, they learned the reality of how people really found and shared information online. They took this knowledge and built something never seen before; a network that helps people find the things they love without having to search.

We understand that consumers have the answers to what is truly interesting and relevant on the web. We know the importance of observing user behavior anonymously and in aggregate. By looking at the sum of the parts, we can see connections between billions of pieces of content, products, photos, blogs, videos, advertising and user generated content on the web. These connections are where the magic of discovery lies.

We have learned that once you engage a consumer, they will keep clicking for more great content and they will keep buying more great products. We have learned how to attract consumer interest by helping them understand what millions of others have done on the Internet.

Discovery is everywhere. It is on websites. In emails. In advertising and affiliate promotions. Discovery is on the store floor. In cell phones. It's in the air around us. We are delivering discovery everywhere with the Pique Discovery™ Network.

In this series, academic and industry leaders explore the growing influence of discovery on consumer behavior and business’ bottom line.

Software veteran, John Furrier, interviews recognized experts within the fields of economics, psychology and computer science to explore the importance online discovery and its implications for online businesses. Panelists share insights from their personal research, identify best practices and suggest ways for businesses to leverage this important new communications and sales channel.

Look for upcoming interviews with collaborative filtering scientist and author John Riedl and personalization expert Yezdi Lashkari.


Title: Discovery Comes of Age
Paul Martino, CEO, Aggregate Knowledge

Discovery has moved from a simple recommendation engine to a whole new way of finding products and information online. In this podcast, Aggregate Knowledge CEO Paul Martino, a pioneer in Discovery, discusses “What is Discovery?” He’ll address the relationship of Discovery to search, personalization, behavioral targeting, and recommendation engines.

Paul Martino is the CEO and cofounder of Aggregate Knowledge, which is the fourth company that he has founded over his 20 year technology career. Martino was previously the CTO and founder of Tribe Network, which was acquired by Cisco. In addition to being a serial entrepreneur, he has held senior business development positions at Intertrust and SkyPilot. The highly scalable architecture of Pique is based on the research work Martino did on massively parallel graph algorithms while a Ph.D. candidate at Princeton University. Paul also holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Lehigh University and an M.S. in Computer Science from Princeton.
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Title: The Paradox of Choice
Barry Schwartz, Ph.D.

Barry Schwartz, award-winning author of The Paradox of Choice: How More is Less, explains how the increasing demand for options actually decreases consumer confidence and satisfaction: people can be overwhelmed with too many choices. In this podcast, Schwartz discusses his research and how it can apply in the online world.  He gives practical advice for retailers on how they can delight their customers and be successful in the online world.

Barry Schwartz is the Dorwin Cartwright Professor of Social Theory and Social Action at Swarthmore College. He is the author of several books, including

The Battle for Human Nature: The Science, Morality and Modern Life


The Costs of Living: How Market Freedom Erodes the Best Things in Life

. His articles have appeared in many of the leading journals in his field including the American Psychologist.

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Title: Recommendations 2.0
John Riedl, Ph.D.

John Riedl, author of Word of Mouse: The Marketing Power of Collaborative Filtering, discusses the evolution of recommendation systems and lessons learned from his experience at Net Perceptions. He outlines how the technology has evolved from difficult and expensive system to deploy, to simple and effective. Now, virtually any online businesses can have an efficient, low-risk way to integrate discovery into their marketing and merchandising decision-making. Riedl explains why just employing a keyword search on a site isn’t enough in the Web 2.0 world.

John Riedl was co-founder and Chief Scientist for Net Perceptions, an early leader in online personalization technology. Riedl is currently a professor in the computer science department at the University of Minnesota where his research includes the GroupLens Project one of the most famous collaborative filtering and recommendation research groups in the world. In 1999, Riedl and other Net Perceptions co-founders shared the MIT Sloan School’s award for E-Commerce Technology.

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Title: From Search to Discovery
Yezdi Lashkari

Yezdi Lashkari outlines the origins and limitations of collaborative filtering, the importance of Web 2.0, and how the commoditization of certain specific web technologies will benefit both consumers and businesses alike. He addresses the importance of blending algorithms to effectively harness collective user behavior, and the wisdom of crowds.

Yezdi Lashkari was a co-founder of Firefly Networks (acquired by Microsoft), a pioneering company in the area of collaborative filtering and personalization.  Lashkari recently left Microsoft, where he played a number of senior product leadership roles, the last being a special assignment sponsored directly by CEO Steven Ballmer, focused on researching large scale network-centric computing infrastructures for thousands of hosts. This work is now driving one of the technical pillars of the post-Vista Windows release. Lashkari holds numerous patents in collaborative filtering, data protection and user profiling technologies. He received his M.S. from the MIT Media Laboratory and has three computer science degrees covering research areas ranging from artificial intelligence, databases, to collaborative filtering and personalization.




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