Wide Area Selection as a Hyperdocument Search Interface


Area selection allows readers to form their own associations between documents by presenting selected text as a search query. Results can be kept along with the original text to make persistent collections of links and association text. This overcomes problems in query formulation and loss of relevant information due to document alteration. ‘c 1998 Puhllshed by Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved. !&~‘n’orr~.s: Searching: Interface; Bookmark; Link: Browser Searching the Internet can be done in a number of ways, none of which may be immediately obvious to the Web novice. Browsing. hierarchical menus. and keyword searches provide access to information. Some searches require mathematical-like syntax in order to bring back meaningful search results. Tools exist to allow comprehensive searches of the WWW by use of multiple search engines (such as Savvy Search). A problem with the present search based WWW information retrieval is that it does not support a novice who cannot categorise. or recognise heywords to retrieve information and is unfamiliar with the use of search engines. Pinkerton [3] points out that I .S words are used to describe the average query. Altavista’s Java based category browser tries to improve on this by providin g a graphical network-like term structure. If a user is learning a topic domain, however, the ability to describe the desired information and relationships in the topic domain is limited. Web search results are normally a set of links and a selection of pages as targets. Storing these pages is required to keep the Ii&s. while relationships to the ideas and the information which prompted a query, is lost entirely. This ’ Corresponding ;Luthor. ’ E-mail: (Jason.Lowder.Xindong.Wu} Cmcs~c.monash.edu.au forfeits a large amount of the learning power provided by hypertext though forming for relationships. Also, the update-ability of hypertext can result in the loss of relationships due to alteration of content, focus or structure. To ensure that the link remains relevant, some kind of “snippet” of information describing the original document should be kept. These are problems with the reading tools, not problems that can be solved by a site-by-site basis. At present if you wish to search the Web the learner has to deal with the use of a new indexing method and develop their own strategy for collecting information. before they can deal with the structure. The objectives of any new interface for searching should provide: consistency across platforms and browsers and hyperdocuments. metaphors to normal reading tasks for learnability and features though reuse of present interface elements, Kabbash and Buxton [?] discuss the use of “Area Selection” as a mechanism for improving the accuracy of selection. Selecting a graphical object with a wider cursor captures the “area” of the user’s interest. Areas of text also trigger the drive to tind more related information. some of these areas are often not seen as relevant or related by an author. In a distributed hypertext environment. it makes sense to let people form their own links between pages, Basing this idea around the already familiar cut/copy 0169-7552/9X/$19.00

DOI: 10.1016/S0169-7552(98)00043-9

Cite this paper

@article{Lowder1998WideAS, title={Wide Area Selection as a Hyperdocument Search Interface}, author={Jason Lowder and Xindong Wu}, journal={Computer Networks}, year={1998}, volume={30}, pages={658-659} }