Data Exploration using Example-based Methods

Matteo Lissandrini, Davide Mottin, Themis Palpanas, Yannis Velegrakis


Cover of book: Data Exploration using Example-based Methods
Synthesis Lectures on Data Management — Morgan & Claypool publishers

Exploration is one of the primordial ways to accrue knowledge about the world and its nature. It describes the act of becoming familiar with something by testing or experimenting, and at the same time it evokes the image of a traveler traversing a new territory. As we accumulate, mostly automatically, data at unprecedented volumes and speed, our datasets have become less and less familiar to us. In this context we speak of exploratory search as of the process of gradual discovery and understanding of the portion of the data that is pertinent to an often-times vague user's information need. Contrary to traditional search, where the desired result is well defined and the focus is on precision and performance, exploratory search usually starts from a tentative query that hopefully leads to answers at least partially relevant and that can provide cues about the next query. By understanding the distinction between a traditional query and an exploratory query, we can change the semantics of the user input: instead of a strict prescription of the contents of the result-set, we provide a hint of what is relevant. This shift in semantics has led to a number of methods having in common the very specific paradigm of search by-example. Search by-example receives as query a set of example members of the answer set. The search system then infers the entire answer set based on the given examples and any additional information provided by the underlying database.

With this book we have surveyed more than two hundreds research sources to highlight the main example-based techniques for relational, graph, and textual data. The book provides insights on how these example-based search systems can be employed by expert and non-expert users in retrieving the portion of the data that is relevant to their interest, while avoiding the use of complex query languages. We hope this book answers the questions and builds the necessary knowledge to those interested in constructing new data exploration systems.

Data Exploration using Example-based Methods: Data-models
This book covers example-based techniques for different data models.

Graduate students would hopefully deepen their interest in the subject and being involved in the new challenges and opportunities allowed by the powerful exploration method of search-by-example. Researchers and practitioners working in the area will probably find new insights for further improving their approaches and systems.

More info

Read more (PDF), Check the sample chapter (PDF), or

Buy the book


Data Exploration Using Example-Based Methods.”
Synthesis Lectures on Data Management , 10 (4) (): pages: 164. Morgan & Claypool Publishers
ISBN: 9781681734552.

  title={Data Exploration Using Example-Based Methods},
  author={Lissandrini, Matteo and
          Mottin, Davide and
          Palpanas, Themis and
          Velegrakis, Yannis},
  series={Synthesis Lectures on Data Management},
  publisher={Morgan \& Claypool Publishers}