In the field of multi-application personalization, several techniques have been proposed to support user modeling for user data management across different applications. Many of them are based on data reconciliation techniques often implying the concepts of static ontologies and generic user data models. None of them have sufficiently investigated two main issues related to user modeling: (1) profile definition in order to allow every application to build their own view of users while promoting the sharing of these profiles and (2) profile evolution over time in order to avoid data inconsistency and the subsequent loss of income for web-site users and companies. In this paper, we conduct work and propose separated solutions for every issue. We propose a flexible user modeling system, not imposing any fixed user model whom different applications should conform to, but based on the concept of mapping among applications (and mapping functions among their user attributes). We focus in particular on the management of user profile data propagation, as a way to reduce the amount of inconsistent user profile information over several applications. A second goal of this paper is to illustrate, in this context, the benefit obtained by the integration of a Semantic Layer that can help application designers to automatically identify potential user attribute mappings between applications. This paper so illustrates a work-in-progress work where two complementary approaches are integrated to improve a main goal: managing multi-application user profiles in a semi-automatic manner.
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