Attentive Documents: Eye Tracking as Implicit Feedback for Information Retrieval and Beyond
Reading is one of the most frequent activities of knowledge workers. Eye tracking can provide information on what document parts users read, and how they were read. This article aims at generating implicit relevance feedback from eye movements that can be used for information retrieval personalization and further applications. We report the findings from two studies which examine the relation between several eye movement measures and user-perceived relevance of read text passages. The results show that the measures are generally noisy, but after personalizing them we find clear relations between the measures and relevance. In addition, the second study demonstrates the effect of using reading behavior as implicit relevance feedback for personalizing search. The results indicate that gaze-based feedback is very useful and can greatly improve the quality of Web search. The article concludes with an outlook introducing attentive documents keeping track of how users consume them. Based on eye movement feedback, we describe a number of possible applications to make working with documents more effective.