Machine learning : digging into recommendation system

Gotta build on of these for a complex and content rich elearning site.

So did some research.

Here are some of my findings.

Here is a good start :

How to Build a Recommender System by Martin Kihn

The Components of a Recommender System on a site with quite some articles on the topic – like this one on Impression Discounting

Or this one :

Beginners Guide to learn about Content Based Recommender Engines which is from 2015 but still cover the general basis.

Then you have some actual building – for example here in R : A recommendation system in R, applied with respect to the movielens database by Nelson Manohar who seems to specialised in machine learning based on his online profile.

Then we have an old plugin writen for WooCommerce Perso Recommendation Engine Plugin for Woocommerce which is nice to see how it is integrated in WordPress.

Then on youtube, we have quite some tutorials providing some interesting insights with some practical applications – usually movie recommendation engines.

Here we have a good intro from Standford university:

Overview of Recommender Systems | Stanford University

Then finally we can do one :

A really short tutorial (40 min total) to make a python movies recommendation system :

Recommendation Systems – Learn Python for Data Science #3

And the same guy but different stack :

Build a Movie Recommender – Machine Learning for Hackers #4

Then a different approach, with more algorithm into it :

Coding Challenge #70.1: Nearest Neighbors Recommendation Engine – Part 1

Coding Challenge #70.2: Nearest Neighbors Recommendation Engine – Part 2

Coding Challenge #70.3: Nearest Neighbors Recommendation Engine – Part 3

Then a long one of an hour+ integrating with tensor flow (the google library for deep learning) : Recommendation Systems / Engines with TensorFlow – Google Cloud Platform User Group Singapore

Probably more to come, but that’s a good start for now.

Do not hesitate to suggest stuff – either in the comment or on social somewhere

WordPress plugins – AI & machine learning

Just a list of plugin I am considering using as a base for further developments:

Kindred Posts

Kindred Posts uses artificial intelligence to learn how your website visitors use your site and recommends content based on their interests.

(not maintained anymore but developper actively asked for people to join and keep maintaining the project… might do that… we’ll see)

WordLift – AI powered SEO

WordLift helps you organize posts and pages adding facts, links and media to build websites. Lets you create, own and publish your own knowledge graph. WordLift publishes your content as Linked Open Data following Tim Berners-Lee‘s Linked Data Principles.

Doesn’t seem very much self-contained – but probably rely on some external API – i’ll have to see.

Company behind this is italian:

AFS Analytics

I am excited about this plugin because it does 90% of one of the tasks I have to deploy on some LMS and might actually be of great use… will have to dig into that…

Primal for WordPress

Primal for WordPress uses a patented artificial intelligence to
deliver highly relevant and up-to-date information to your readers,
tailored to each page you create.

not thrilled about this one.

First – the applied functionality of the learning process is to fetch external content from the rest of the web – so not very much what I want to do. But maybe the learning algorithm is worth watching. If it is accessible… which is not sure yet.


Watsonfinds analyzes your content to provide insights about the emotions that your audience may perceive as they read it.

well… here not much to learn about the AI part but interesting to see how Watson perform on your content.

Contextly Recommends

Contextly helps you build a loyal audience through engagement tools that keep readers reading. Contextly does far more than just related post recommendations. We also get readers to explore your site by identifying your evergreen posts (think oldies, but goodies) and your most popular posts. For larger sites, we can also personalize recommendations for return readers.

Also has a massive amount of features:

Multiple Recommendation Modules / Related Content / Personalized Content / Popular Content / Evergreen Content / Video Recommendations / Product Recommendations / Editorial Control/Curation / SEO / Promotional Links / Responsive Designs / Analytics / Performance / Custom Post Types / Channel Notifications / FollowUp Notifications

but, there is a catch… as always – that none of these elements are a part of the wordpress infrastructure – just some external API – and cost anywhere from 9$ to 99$ per month (more if you go for an enterprise version).

I want to state that while this is not a solution I would recommend on the long run – it does look very appetising – and is on point for most of the features I’d need.

Also – all these cloud solution are raising a lot of privacy questions – what do they do with your users data and who is it sold to in the end… so there is also that.

Bottom line:

seems to have some interesting plugins but most are going to rely on external engine – which is also not open source and not accessible – so that’s a lot of lost data and not very much useful.

Probably next step will be to explore the world of open source engines for machine learning.

WordPress and Machine learning

I have been working on an idea for a LMS project I am involved with.


The general problem we are trying to solve is to provide a customise learning path for users


Here are some of the videos I found relevant and quick research notes.


#Machine Learning with WordPress

(not as much about wordpress as I thought it would be but a nice intro)


#Building a Machine Learning Platform at Quora

Very good consideration – must relisten to it again.



  • scoring engine
  • gamification / scoring engine


Reference articles

Predicting Customer Behavior: How we use Machine Learning to Identify Paying Customers before they Subscribe

Lasso (statistics) [WIKI]


Track User Behavior in Real-Time to Offer Relevant Website Content to Auto Shoppers – Mini Webinar

That last one got like just wow!!!


Ok… gotta think about that..