CHI-WEB Archives

ACM SIGCHI WWW Human Factors (Open Discussion)


Options: Use Forum View

Use Monospaced Font
Show Text Part by Default
Condense Mail Headers

Message: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]
Topic: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]
Author: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]

Print Reply
"ACM SIGCHI WWW Human Factors (Open Discussion)" <[log in to unmask]>
Tony Costa <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 25 Jan 1999 12:48:21 -0000
Matt Pearcey <[log in to unmask]>
Matt Pearcey <[log in to unmask]>
text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"
text/plain (85 lines)
Hi all,

There is another issue also in play here- how discrete user populations
conceptualise the information space (i.e. shape and dimensionality) - this,
tied to the type of information consumption behaviour that they exhibit,
will determine the type of searchin behaviour that they exhibit.

To take this further, one can envisage a complex information space that is
both searchable (according to [a] specific meta-information, and [b]
free-text type query), and navigable through some interface.

Given that a large proportion of information is structured in relation to
other information (esp. in a corporate environment) this conceptualisation
is relatively straightforward. Also, given that any discrete population has
it's own view of how that information is structured, we should be providing
a variety of interfaces and structural views into that information space,
driven by the user's conceptualisation of it.

As Tony states, engines such as Altavista do this to some extent (i.e. the
conceptual structure approach through semantic maps etc) but it doesn't
provide the nagivation approach, which our studies identified around 50% of
the subject population relied on when locating information in a complex,
structured information space.

cheers, & best regards,
Matt Pearcey
- Senior Consultant           | voice:  +44 (0) 1273 608 311 -
- Intergral Ltd.              | mobile: +44 (0) 7971 563 992 -
-  Premier House              | fax  :  +44 (0) 7970 652 695 -
-  11 Marlborough Place       |                              -
-  Brighton BN1 1UB, UK       |                              -
-                         -
-            mailto:[log in to unmask]               -
"Whatever is done from love always occurs beyond good
and evil"  - Friedrich Nietzsche

> -----Original Message-----
> From: ACM SIGCHI WWW Human Factors (Open Discussion)
> [mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of Tony Costa
> Sent: Friday, January 22, 1999 11:23 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: what to show on a search results page
> On Fri, 22 Jan 1999, Gray Kuglen wrote:
> >
> > Lastly, and I'm probably gonna get flack on this one, force feed them.
> > On the search page do as much of the work for them as possible using
> > drop down lists/menus, check boxes etc.. From my experience the general
> > public has not caught on to Boolean Operators. If you give someone
> > just a blank box, their gonna draw a blank.
> >
> I can't agree more on this point. There is little I hate more than
> teaching people how to use boolean operators. Any why should they have to
> learn how to use them?
> This does not mean throwing out the ability to do boolean searches
> however. For people who have the knowledge to construct accurate queries,
> they are essential.
> What I would recommend is providing multiple search mechanisms,
> boolean searches being just one of them. It has been my experience that
> people have very different ways of searching for items. The trick is to
> identify the three or four methods that cover the majority of people.
> These three methods should be significantly distince from one another. For
> example: a boolean or keyword search, a topical hierarchal tree (like
> yahoo uses), and a natural language query ('How many people live in Paris,
> France?').
> No one search method will ever be effective for all people; there are too
> many variables: technical expertise, personality type, familiarity with a
> given topic, etc.
> Tony.
> PS - Sorry if this diverges from the original topic.