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ETL 505: Module 2; Information Retrieval tools.

Posted by arlekeno on July 13, 2012



Tools used in libraries for retrieving information include:

  • Library catalogues
  • Classification schemes such as the Dewey Decimal Classification, the Library of Congress Classification and the Universal Decimal Classification: these group together information on the same or related subjects
  • Controlled vocabularies – thesauri, subject headings lists: these structure and standardise the words/terminology used
  • Tools which allow us to search text – full-text searching software
  • Image and sound retrieval tools
  • Internet search engines

These tools can be considered in two main categories:

  1. Traditional information retrieval tools, such as library catalogues, classification schemes and controlled vocabularies;
  2. Information retrieval tools developed to handle digital information resources, such as full-text retrieval tools, image and sound retrieval tools, and Internet search engines.


The history of information retrieval tools is noted in Chapter 3, ‘Development of the organization of recorded information in western civilisation’ (pages 49-66) of: Taylor’s The organization of information (2004).

OOh, LIbrary catalogues are over 4500 years old. Not too shabby. Lets hope they survive the internet 😛

I really need to get a grip on the concept of PROVENANCE.

I am looking at the documentation movement, (pg 63), and remember my radings from yesterday where we thought we could just digitise everything due to teh low cost of data storage. I wonder how long it will take for use to run out of hard drive space, the way Libraries last century had to resort to Micro-film.

ASSOCIATIVE INDEXING… I like this idea. Its how we think subjects (64) Vannevar Bush, HE THE MAN!

Information Science is Library Science for men” Love it!

A bibliographic record in a library catalogue has two parts:

  1. a description consisting of the physical attributes of the information carrier (such as number of pages, title, size) and of details about the resource’s creation, publication, etc. (for example, author);
  2. a description of what the document is about (its subject), consisting of words selected from a standard list of authorised terms (for instance, a thesaurus or a subject headings list), a classification number, and sometimes a brief description of what the document is about (an abstract).

(am meant to read Chapter 14 of our text now but it still has not arrived!)

anyway, LETS DO DEWEY!

Anyway, ther rest of this module has a LOT of Hider text readings, so I am going to stop here and worry about them on Monday.

Enjoy your weekend.




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