Efficient Heterogeneous Collaborative Filtering without Negative Sampling for Recommendation

  • Chong Chen Tsinghua University
  • Min Zhang Tsinghua University
  • Yongfeng Zhang Rutgers University
  • Weizhi Ma Tsinghua University
  • Yiqun Liu Tsinghua University
  • Shaoping Ma Tsinghua University


Recent studies on recommendation have largely focused on exploring state-of-the-art neural networks to improve the expressiveness of models, while typically apply the Negative Sampling (NS) strategy for efficient learning. Despite effectiveness, two important issues have not been well-considered in existing methods: 1) NS suffers from dramatic fluctuation, making sampling-based methods difficult to achieve the optimal ranking performance in practical applications; 2) although heterogeneous feedback (e.g., view, click, and purchase) is widespread in many online systems, most existing methods leverage only one primary type of user feedback such as purchase. In this work, we propose a novel non-sampling transfer learning solution, named Efficient Heterogeneous Collaborative Filtering (EHCF) for Top-N recommendation. It can not only model fine-grained user-item relations, but also efficiently learn model parameters from the whole heterogeneous data (including all unlabeled data) with a rather low time complexity. Extensive experiments on three real-world datasets show that EHCF significantly outperforms state-of-the-art recommendation methods in both traditional (single-behavior) and heterogeneous scenarios. Moreover, EHCF shows significant improvements in training efficiency, making it more applicable to real-world large-scale systems. Our implementation has been released 1 to facilitate further developments on efficient whole-data based neural methods.

AAAI Technical Track: AI and the Web