Building a Steam Recommendation Engine Part 0

I thought it’d be fun to make a Steam game rating site. But apparently (and expectedly) that exists. Instead, I plan to figure out how graph databases work. This was not inspired by Facebook’s graph search, because I can’t possibly see how my “friends” restaurant recommendations could be more valuable than, you know, an aggregate of everyone’s or experts’. Nor was it inspired by the amazing ability to see which of my friends of friends like dogs or cheese or both. Spoiler: all of them.

A little more inspiring is the use of graph databases in studying gene interaction, illness diagnosis, path finding, and to the point, a video game recommendation engine.

Mostly to keep me focused, I’ll be chronicling the progress of putting this loosely planned project together. We (royal ‘we’, not author and readers ‘we’) are going to need a few things to make this happen.

  1. A list of Steam games. Just scraping these.
  2. Some Steam users and the lists of the games that they play or like. I dunno yet. Maybe I can scrape these too.
  3. A graph database! I’m going to use Neo4j because I heard a talk on it and Heroku has a fee addon. Plus, I trust companies of Swedish origin. Right? IKEA?
  4. A little web site to, you know, recommend stuff to people. I’ll do that last, or part way.

Four things? Nice project management, we. Next post I’ll cover part one, because I already wrote that.