Web Montage: A Dynamic Personalized Start Page

Corin R. Anderson and Eric Horvitz

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Despite the connotation of the words "browsing" and "surfing," web usage often follows routine patterns of access. However, few mechanisms exist to assist users with these routine tasks; bookmarks or portal sites must be maintained manually and are insensitive to the user's browsing context. To fill this void, we designed and implemented the \montage\ system. A web montage is an ensemble of links and content fused into a single view. Such a coalesced view can be presented to the user whenever he or she opens the browser or returns to the start page. We pose a number of hypotheses about how users would interact with such a system, and test these hypotheses with a fielded user study. Our findings support some design decisions, such as using browsing context to tailor the montage, raise questions about others, and point the way toward future work.

Keywords: Personalization, user modeling, adaptive user interfaces, adaptive web sites

In: Eleventh Inernational World Wide Web Conference, Honolulu, Hawaii, May 2002.

Author Email: corin@cs.washington.edu and horvitz@microsoft.com