Quickstart
This guide shows how to install and run Metarank on a single machine using Docker. We will run the service, feed it with sample data and issue queries.

This guide is tested with Docker for linux v20.10.16, and metarank/metarank:0.5.1 docker image.

For the quickstart, we will use an open RankLens dataset and personalize a set of pre-computed movie recommendations based on visitor activity. The dataset is used to build a Metarank Demo website and includes the following event types:
Movie metadata: genres, actors, tags, votes.
Visitor impressions: what was displayed to a visitor
Visitor interactions: which movies the visitor liked after observing the ranking.
For this quickstart, you need two files from the dataset:
  1. 1.
    config.yml - metarank configuration file used in the demo.metarank.ai, describing how to map visitor events to ML features. For your own dataset, you don't always need to write this file from scratch, Metarank can automatically try to deduce most typical feature mappings based on your dataset. See Autofeature for details.
  2. 2.
    events.jsonl.gz - a dump of historical visitor interactions used for ML training.
curl -o config.yml https://raw.githubusercontent.com/metarank/metarank/master/src/test/resources/ranklens/config.yml
curl -o events.jsonl.gz https://media.githubusercontent.com/media/metarank/metarank/master/src/test/resources/ranklens/events/events.jsonl.gz
ls -l
total 172
drwxr-xr-x 2 user user 4096 Aug 23 14:24 .
drwxr-xr-x 81 user user 16384 Aug 23 14:24 ..
-rw-r--r-- 1 user user 2542 Aug 23 14:24 config.yml
-rw-r--r-- 1 user user 150264 Aug 23 14:24 events.jsonl.gz

docker run -i -t -p 8080:8080 -v $(pwd):/opt/metarank\
metarank/metarank:0.5.5 standalone\
--config /opt/metarank/config.yml\
--data /opt/metarank/events.jsonl.gz
This command will:
  • run the dataset import process from the current directory,
  • start the API on port 8080.
import and training process

We're going to send a set of initial candidates for reranking into Metarank's REST API /rank endpoint for an xgboost model defined in config.yml. Let's take top-100 popular movies tagged as Sci-Fi, and ask Metarank to reorder them to maximize CTR:
curl http://localhost:8080/rank/xgboost -d '{
"event": "ranking",
"id": "id1",
"items": [
{"id":"72998"}, {"id":"67197"}, {"id":"77561"}, {"id":"68358"}, {"id":"79132"}, {"id":"103228"},
{"id":"72378"}, {"id":"85131"}, {"id":"94864"}, {"id":"68791"}, {"id":"93363"}, {"id":"112623"},
{"id":"109487"}, {"id":"59315"}, {"id":"120466"}, {"id":"90405"}, {"id":"122918"}, {"id":"70286"},
{"id":"117529"}, {"id":"130490"}, {"id":"92420"}, {"id":"122882"}, {"id":"87306"}, {"id":"82461"},
{"id":"113345"}, {"id":"2571"}, {"id":"122900"}, {"id":"88744"}, {"id":"111360"}, {"id":"134130"},
{"id":"95875"}, {"id":"60069"}, {"id":"2021"}, {"id":"135567"}, {"id":"103253"}, {"id":"111759"},
{"id":"122902"}, {"id":"104243"}, {"id":"112852"}, {"id":"102880"}, {"id":"56174"}, {"id":"107406"},
{"id":"96610"}, {"id":"741"}, {"id":"166528"}, {"id":"164179"}, {"id":"187595"}, {"id":"589"},
{"id":"71057"}, {"id":"3527"}, {"id":"6365"}, {"id":"6934"}, {"id":"1270"}, {"id":"6502"},
{"id":"114935"}, {"id":"8810"}, {"id":"173291"}, {"id":"1580"}, {"id":"182715"}, {"id":"166635"},
{"id":"1917"}, {"id":"135569"}, {"id":"106920"}, {"id":"1240"}, {"id":"5502"}, {"id":"316"},
{"id":"85056"}, {"id":"780"}, {"id":"1527"}, {"id":"5459"}, {"id":"94018"}, {"id":"33493"},
{"id":"8644"}, {"id":"60684"}, {"id":"7254"}, {"id":"44191"}, {"id":"101864"}, {"id":"132046"},
{"id":"97752"}, {"id":"2628"}, {"id":"541"}, {"id":"106002"}, {"id":"1200"}, {"id":"5378"},
{"id":"2012"}, {"id":"79357"}, {"id":"6283"}, {"id":"113741"}, {"id":"90345"}, {"id":"2011"},
{"id":"27660"}, {"id":"34048"}, {"id":"1882"}, {"id":"1748"}, {"id":"2985"}, {"id":"104841"},
{"id":"34319"}, {"id":"1097"}, {"id":"115713"}, {"id":"2916"}
],
"user": "alice",
"session": "alice1",
"timestamp": 1661431892711
}'
The API will respond with a list of 100 re-ranked movie ids:
{
"items": [
{"item": "72998", "score": 2.0272045135498047},
{"item": "589", "score": 1.838820457458496},
{"item": "134130", "score": 1.7281458377838135},
{"item": "5459", "score": 1.7237709760665894},
{"item": "1917", "score": 1.7038706541061401},
{"item": "2571", "score": 1.6998087167739868},
{"item": "1527", "score": 1.6812316179275513},
{"item": "97752", "score": 1.6692591905593872},
{"item": "1270", "score": 1.648807406425476},
{"item": "1580", "score": 1.5384368896484375},
{"item": "109487", "score": 1.5244081020355225},
{"item": "79132", "score": 1.4934355020523071},
// other 88 items are skipped
]
}
Which looks like a diverse set of sci-fi movies with some generic non-personalized ranking, as we haven't sent any interaction events yet.
sci-fi movies

Metarank expects to receive impression events (what was displayed to the visitor) and interaction events (what the visitor did after seeing the listing).
Impression event contains only the items that were displayed to the user, so if your response is paginated, impression event will indicate only items from the current page.
In our case, the impression event is a set of top 12 movies from the previous /rank request, starting with Terminator 2 and ending with MIIB:
curl http://localhost:8080/feedback -d '{
"event": "ranking",
"id": "id1",
"items": [
{"id":"72998"}, {"id":"589"}, {"id":"134130"}, {"id":"5459"},
{"id":"1917"}, {"id":"2571"}, {"id":"1527"}, {"id":"97752"},
{"id":"1270"}, {"id":"1580"}, {"id":"109487"}, {"id":"79132"}
],
"user": "alice",
"session": "alice1",
"timestamp": 1661431894711
}'
Now let's send a click on Men in Black with id=1580:
curl http://localhost:8080/feedback -d '{
"event": "interaction",
"type": "click",
"id": "id2",
"ranking": "id1",
"item": "1580",
"user": "alice",
"session": "alice1",
"timestamp": 1661431896711
}'

Now, we are ready to get some personalized!
Let's send the same first ranking request with top-100 sci-fi movies we did before, and see how response will change after providing some visitor feedback:
curl http://localhost:8080/rank/xgboost -d '{
"event": "ranking",
"id": "id1",
"items": [
{"id":"72998"}, {"id":"67197"}, {"id":"77561"}, {"id":"68358"}, {"id":"79132"}, {"id":"103228"},
{"id":"72378"}, {"id":"85131"}, {"id":"94864"}, {"id":"68791"}, {"id":"93363"}, {"id":"112623"},
{"id":"109487"}, {"id":"59315"}, {"id":"120466"}, {"id":"90405"}, {"id":"122918"}, {"id":"70286"},
{"id":"117529"}, {"id":"130490"}, {"id":"92420"}, {"id":"122882"}, {"id":"87306"}, {"id":"82461"},
{"id":"113345"}, {"id":"2571"}, {"id":"122900"}, {"id":"88744"}, {"id":"111360"}, {"id":"134130"},
{"id":"95875"}, {"id":"60069"}, {"id":"2021"}, {"id":"135567"}, {"id":"103253"}, {"id":"111759"},
{"id":"122902"}, {"id":"104243"}, {"id":"112852"}, {"id":"102880"}, {"id":"56174"}, {"id":"107406"},
{"id":"96610"}, {"id":"741"}, {"id":"166528"}, {"id":"164179"}, {"id":"187595"}, {"id":"589"},
{"id":"71057"}, {"id":"3527"}, {"id":"6365"}, {"id":"6934"}, {"id":"1270"}, {"id":"6502"},
{"id":"114935"}, {"id":"8810"}, {"id":"173291"}, {"id":"1580"}, {"id":"182715"}, {"id":"166635"},
{"id":"1917"}, {"id":"135569"}, {"id":"106920"}, {"id":"1240"}, {"id":"5502"}, {"id":"316"},
{"id":"85056"}, {"id":"780"}, {"id":"1527"}, {"id":"5459"}, {"id":"94018"}, {"id":"33493"},
{"id":"8644"}, {"id":"60684"}, {"id":"7254"}, {"id":"44191"}, {"id":"101864"}, {"id":"132046"},
{"id":"97752"}, {"id":"2628"}, {"id":"541"}, {"id":"106002"}, {"id":"1200"}, {"id":"5378"},
{"id":"2012"}, {"id":"79357"}, {"id":"6283"}, {"id":"113741"}, {"id":"90345"}, {"id":"2011"},
{"id":"27660"}, {"id":"34048"}, {"id":"1882"}, {"id":"1748"}, {"id":"2985"}, {"id":"104841"},
{"id":"34319"}, {"id":"1097"}, {"id":"115713"}, {"id":"2916"}
],
"user": "alice",
"session": "alice1",
"timestamp": 1661431898711
}'
As you can see, the response is quite different from the first attempt:
{
"items": [
{"item": "1580", "score": 3.345952033996582},
{"item": "5459", "score": 2.873959541320801},
{"item": "8644", "score": 2.500633478164673},
{"item": "56174", "score": 2.2979140281677246},
{"item": "2571", "score": 2.0133864879608154},
{"item": "1270", "score": 1.807900071144104},
{"item": "109487", "score": 1.7143194675445557},
{"item": "589", "score": 1.706472396850586},
{"item": "780", "score": 1.7030035257339478},
{"item": "1527", "score": 1.6445566415786743},
{"item": "60069", "score": 1.6372750997543335},
{"item": "1917", "score": 1.6299139261245728}
// other 88 items skipped
]
}
reranked
Ranking was adjusted to a taste of the visitor, we can see that:
  • Men in Black 2 went to the top, as it has similar tags and actors.
  • other space movies also went up (like Armageddon), as they're also space-related.
  • both parts of Back to the Future went significantly down, as not related to past visitor's clicks.

  • play with the contents of config.yml, enabling and disabling different features and see how ranking changes depending on used features.
  • generate your own set of input events, describing your use case.
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On this page
Prerequisites
Getting the dataset
Running Metarank in Docker
First query
Sending visitor feedback
Getting personalized ranking
What's next?