This Issue is : 03-2009

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Tell me who are you and I tell you where to go?

Tell me who are you and I tell you where to go?
 
In my previous article about smart tourism, I mentioned the idea of applying the artificial intelligence in tourism. One of the kinds of smart tourism is the Destination Recommendation Systems that analyse the Travel Personality of the user.

Destination Recommendation Systems are still empirical systems that rely on the assumption that the choices of the user should be gathered and analysed accurately in order to be able to provide the user with the useful recommendations.

The method of inquiry employed here is a difficult one as the perfect method is different from one user to another, namely, what could be perfect for some one may not be for the other and vice-versa.

For example, the user is sometimes asked a series of Diagnostic perplexing questions which is a tiring method in most circumstances and therefore is not preferred with many users. One of the alternatives of user recommendations inquiry is carried out through the analysis of mutual text messages between the travel agent and the user via a special web chat. The Text mining techniques help explores the exciting parts of these messages and after collecting and inquiring the user's data, the user travel personality is categorized.

The personality of the travellers could be analysed according to the preferences of the inquiry group. The travel personality of the system user is compared to the database of tourist destinations along with their attractions, and possibilities as well.

Finally, the system displays the results of this comparison (tourism options such as towns and attractions). They are the best destinations of the tourist's travel personality. Each destination may be accompanied with a percentage expressing how the destination is conformant with the travel personality of the user. Additionally, the system must have the ability to explain and justify its options.

The system may depend on tourism ontology that includes definite subjects and vocabulary items used to distinguish destinations and travel personalities and thus the system helps the user take his decision; hence it is deemed a decision taking support system.

One of the most successful systems is the Trip lehops Trip Matcher applied in (www.ski-europe.com) and Vacation Coach's expert advice platform, applied in (www.travelocity.com) .
 
 
Dr. Hany Harb
harbhany@yahoo.com