What are recommendations?

How does Netflix know exactly what you might want to watch next? How does your Instagram feed know what type of content to show you to keep you hooked? This “magic” is powered by recommendation systems: algorithms that are able to provide the most relevant and accurate items to the user from a huge pool of content base. They are able to discover patterns in the data to provide a personalized user experience. When talking about creating personalized experiences, we mainly come across two types of recommendations:

  • Home feed: recommendations personalized to a user based on their interests, e.g., your Netflix homepage
  • "More Like This"/Related items: recommendations similar to a particular item, e.g., movies like the one you watched last time or the news article you just read

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