Optimizing Video Caching at the Edge: A Hybrid Multi-Point Process Approach

Xianzhi Zhang, Yipeng Zhou, Di wu, Miao Hu, James Xi Zheng, Min Chen, Song Guo

It is always a challenging problem to deliver a huge volume of videos over the Internet. To meet the high bandwidth and stringent playback demand, one feasible solution is to cache video contents on edge servers based on predicted video popularity. Traditional caching algorithms (e.g., LRU, LFU) are too simple to capture the dynamics of video popularity, especially long-tailed videos. Recent learning-driven caching algorithms (e.g., DeepCache) show promising performance, however, such black-box approaches are lack of explainability and interpretability. Moreover, the parameter tuning requires a large number of historical records, which are difficult to obtain for videos with low popularity. In this paper, we optimize video caching at the edge using a white-box approach, which is highly efficient and also completely explainable. To accurately capture the evolution of video popularity, we develop a mathematical model called \emph{HRS} model, which is the combination of multiple point processes, including Hawkes' self-exciting, reactive and self-correcting processes. The key advantage of the HRS model is its explainability, and much less number of model parameters. In addition, all its model parameters can be learned automatically through maximizing the Log-likelihood function constructed by past video request events. Next, we further design an online HRS-based video caching algorithm. To verify its effectiveness, we conduct a series of experiments using real video traces collected from Tencent Video, one of the largest online video providers in China. Experiment results demonstrate that our proposed algorithm outperforms the state-of-the-art algorithms, with 12.3\% improvement on average in terms of cache hit rate under realistic settings.

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