Nurture: Notifying Users at the Right Time Using Reinforcement Learning [Workshop paper]

NESL Technical Report #: 2018-10-1

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Abstract: User interaction is an essential part of many mobile devices such as smartphones and wrist bands. Only by interacting with the user can these devices deliver services, enable proper configurations, and learn user preferences. Push notifications are the primary method used to attract user attention in modern devices. However, these notifications can be ineffective and even irritating if they prompt the user at an inappropriate time. The discontent is exacerbated by the large number of applications that target limited user attention. We propose a reinforcement learning-based personalization technique, called Nurture, which automatically identifies the appropriate time to send notifications for a given user context. Through simulations with the crowdsourcing platform Amazon Mechanical Turk, we show that our approach successfully learns user preferences and significantly improves the rate of notification responses.

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Publication Forum: UbiTtention'18

Date: 2018-10-12

Place: Singapore

Publisher: ACM

Public Document?: Yes

NESL Document?: Yes

Document category: Workshop paper

Primary Research Area: Pervasive Computing

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