Tuesday, October 10, 2006

An interesting new acquaintance: the field of information seeking and retrieval

I read a review by T.D. Wilson of the book The turn: integration of information seeking and retrieval in context, and decided to buy it for future reading.

This book introduces a new field called"information seeking and retrieval", which combines two existing ones, namely the research in information seeking and information retrieval. I have a feeling that this is something important for my studies, as I am not only interested in information retrieval in the context of a LOR, but I think the information seeking task at hand has important implications.

The reviewer explains information seeking being
concerned with the discovery of the appropriate information for tasks, research, everyday life, etc., regardless of the way that information is packaged.

Another important idea from the book, that the reviewer underlined, is that research should not be too narrowly system-oriented - otherwise it might run into the risk of being development of technology with no carefully analyzed use contexts. That is something that I have to also keep in mind, not to be too focused on one system that I study, but keep my mind and door open for further applicability. Looking forward reading the book!

Furthermore, I was reading about the book called Ambient Findability by Peter Morville, that my promoter wanted to bring into my attention. In an article dating in 2004 with the same name (what a stupid name, btw) he goes like this:

It is this subtle power of context that intrigues me in the realm of networked information environments. We use people to find content. We use content to find people. Information seeking behavior and social network analysis go hand in hand. In today’s knowledge economy, learning and finding are powered by all sorts of invisible links between and among people and documents.

Very interestingly, when he says "Information seeking behavior and social network analysis go hand in hand." makes me nod my head. Yes, that is the way it goes and we need tools that help those two to better work together, and add information retrieval into it, maybe from the cognitive approach, as Ingwersen and Järvelin suggest. But for that, I have to read the book to know more.

Wilson, T.D. (2005). Review of: Ingwersen, P. and Järvelin, K. The turn: integration of information seeking and retrieval in context. Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer, 2005. Information Research, 11(1), review no. R189 [Available at: http://informationr.net/ir/reviews/revs189.html]

No comments: