New Online Algorithms for Story Scheduling in Web Advertising

  • Susanne Albers
  • Achim Passen
Conference paper

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642-39212-2_40

Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7966)
Cite this paper as:
Albers S., Passen A. (2013) New Online Algorithms for Story Scheduling in Web Advertising. In: Fomin F.V., Freivalds R., Kwiatkowska M., Peleg D. (eds) Automata, Languages, and Programming. ICALP 2013. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol 7966. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg

Abstract

We study storyboarding where advertisers wish to present sequences of ads (stories) uninterruptedly on a major ad position of a web page. These jobs/stories arrive online and are triggered by the browsing history of a user who at any time continues surfing with probability β. The goal of an ad server is to construct a schedule maximizing the expected reward. The problem was introduced by Dasgupta, Ghosh, Nazerzadeh and Raghavan (SODA’09) who presented a 7-competitive online algorithm. They also showed that no deterministic online strategy can achieve a competitiveness smaller than 2, for general β.

We present improved algorithms for storyboarding. First we give a simple online strategy that achieves a competitive ratio of 4/(2 − β), which is upper bounded by 4 for any β. The algorithm is also 1/(1 − β)-competitive, which gives better bounds for small β. As the main result of this paper we devise a refined algorithm that attains a competitive ratio of c = 1 + φ, where \(\phi=(1+\sqrt{5})/2\) is the Golden Ratio. This performance guarantee of c ≈ 2.618 is close to the lower bound of 2. Additionally, we study for the first time a problem extension where stories may be presented simultaneously on several ad positions of a web page. For this parallel setting we provide an algorithm whose competitive ratio is upper bounded by \(1/(3-2\sqrt{2})\approx 5.828\), for any β. All our algorithms work in phases and have to make scheduling decisions only every once in a while.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Susanne Albers
    • 1
  • Achim Passen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceHumboldt-Universität zu BerlinGermany

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