SWAMI: A Multiagent, Active Representation of a User’s Browsing Interests

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The rapid growth of the World Wide Web has complicated the process of web browsing by providing an overwhelming wealth of choices for the end user. To alleviate this burden, intelligent tools can do much of the drudge-work of looking ahead, searching and performing a preliminary evaluation of the end pages on the user’s behalf, providing the user with more information with which to make fewer, more informed decisions. In order to accomplish this task, however, the tools need some form of representation of the interests of the user. This paper describes the SWAMI system; SWAMI stands for “Searching the Web with Agents having Mobility and Intelligence”. SWAMI is a prototype that uses a multi-agent system to represent the interests of the user dynamically, and take advantage of the active nature of agents to provide a platform for look-ahead evaluation, page searching, and link swapping. The collection of agents is organized hierarchically according to the apparent interests of the user, which are discovered dynamically through multi-stage clustering. Results from testing show that such a system is able to follow the multiple changing interests of a user accurately, and that it is capable of acting fruitfully on these interests to provide a user with useful navigational suggestions.