Explaining Results from Information Retrieval and Integration

Honglei Zeng, Deborah L. McGuinness, Paulo Pinheiro da Silva, and Richard Fikes

Information retrieval and integration systems typically must handle incomplete and inconsistent data. Current approaches attempt to reconcile discrepant information by leveraging data quality, user preferences, or source provenance information. Such approaches may overlook the fact that information is interpreted relative to its context. Therefore, discrepancies may be explained and thereby resolved if contexts are taking into account. In this paper, we describe an information integrator that is capable of explaining its results. We focus on using knowledge of an assumption context learned through decision tree-based classification to inform the explanations. We further discuss some benefits and difficulties of applying assumption context in information retrieval. Finally, we indicate how to use Inference Web to explain discrepancies resulting from information retrieval and integration applications.

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