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of the American Society for Information Science

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Volume 25, No. 4

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April / May 1999





Scheduled Program Sessions
Divided by Tracks


Get up to speed on the issues with a background and update presentation by Clifford Lynch, Coalition for Networked Information, followed by the welcome reception.

The Importance of Evaluating Networked Information Services and Resources
A panel of speakers, moderated by Charles R. McClure, will debate key issues and strategies related to improving evaluation efforts related to networked services and resources.
Peter Brophy, Manchester Metropolitan University
Ron Larsen, DARPA
Charles R. McClure , Syracuse University

What Was Learned; What is Needed?
John C. Bertot, SUNY Albany, Moderator


Initiatives in Evaluating Federal Websites
Federal agencies have increasingly been providing information and services via the Web. As their Web sites have grown, agencies have begun to consider the impact of those sites for users and for the organizations.  The three panelists all have extensive experience in the evaluation of Federal Web sites and the presentations will highlight particular components of those evaluations.
Charles R. McClure, Syracuse University. An Information Policy Perspective on Federal Web Site Evaluation: Evaluation at the Department of Education
TBA from the Federal Interagency Task Force on FedStats. Evaluation of Web Sites Spanning Multiple Agencies: The Experience of FedStats
Carol A. Hert, Syracuse University. Understanding the Organizational Impact of a Federal Web Site: Exploration of Two Cases
Moderator: Carol A. Hert, Syracuse University

Evaluating the Web: A Look at Web Pages, Databases and Evaluation Theory  (SIGs/LAN, ED, IAE)
Evaluation of Web-based information resources is an important part of a librarian's work. But what are the criteria for evaluating the accuracy and authority of Web pages? What are the criteria for evaluating proprietary Web interface databases? What being taught in ILS/LIS today will equip librarians for this important task? Jeff Rosen and Ann Eagan will discuss how to evaluate "free" Web pages. Keith Stirling's presentation title will be "On Evaluating/Implementing Vendor Electronic Products." Greg Newby will discuss evaluation and/or related research.
Keith H. Stirling, Brigham Young University
Gregory B. Newby, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Jeff Rosen , University of Arizona Library
Ann Eagan, University of Arizona, Tucson
Moderator: Laura K. Cousineau, Duke University

How To Make Information on the Internet More Verifiable . Don Fallis, University of Arizona

Development of an Internet Site Evaluation Tool for Use by Information Management Students. Michael Middleton and S. Edwards, Queensland University of Technology

Ongoing Evaluation of Internet Resources: Policies and Procedures. Susan Calcari and Gerri Wanserski, Internet Scout Project, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Methods of Measurement and Evaluation of Departmental and Individual Web Sites in an Academic Library. Jeanie M. Welch, University of North Carolina at Charlotte

North Carolina State University Libraries Evaluate the Use of Network Resources. Keith Morgan, North Carolina State University

Online Journal Use in a Segment of Academe. George S. Porter, Ian Roberts, Caroline Smith, Ed Sponsler and Judith Jo Nollar, all Caltech Library System

User's Searching Behavior and the World Wide Web: Physical, Cognitive and Affective Factors. Peiling Wang and William B. Hawk, University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Networked Information Resource Use as Planned Behavior in Context: A Reflection on the Role of Definition and Measurement in Quantitative User Studies. Jane E. Klobas, The University of Western Australia


Use, Benefits and Constraints of Electronic Communications in Africa: How to Assess Them? Michel J. Menou, CIDEGI; Jane Asaba, Uganda AIDS Commission; Bernard Bazirake, Makerere University (Uganda); Vitalicy Chifwepa, University of Zambia; Nancy J. Hafkin , African Information Science Initiative; and Abebe Rorissa, University of Namibia

"Beam It Up Scotty" - Industrial Designers Using Networks to Distribute Three Dimensional Material on the Internet. Mark Evans and Paul Wormald, both Loughborough University

The Role of User Evaluation in Design and Ongoing Development of a WWW Browser-Based Interface to Library and Networked Information Resources at the University of Western Australia. Jane E. Klobas, The University of Western Australia

What Is Web Usability Anyway? A Conceptual Study on Usability in the Web Environment. Ping Zhang and Jiangping Chen, Syracuse University

Use Analysis of an Academic Library Web Site. Kyunghye Kim, Rutgers University

Query Characteristics in the George Bush Digital Library. Dion H. Goh and Rebecca P. Ang, Texas A&M University

Economics of Web-Based Information (SIGs/MGT, III)
Only limited financial evaluation of Web-based information is available. For information providers, relevant questions concern tangible and intangible costs and benefits, direct and indirect costs, how expenditures compare with an equivalent print source, the relationship between capital expenditures and repairs, methods of estimating benefits from Web-based information.

For information users, relevant questions concern the tangible and intangible costs and benefits of Web-based information, getting unreliable information due to noise generated by cultural differences or because Web pages contain obsolete information.

What is the role of newer valuing methodologies, such as total value, value-in-use and aggregate analysis? What benefits can result from internal Web resources used in knowledge management functions? The panel will shed light on these and other issues, bringing together experts on economics of Web-based information from the corporate, public service, academic library and academic research domains in the United States and abroad.
Jane K. Starnes, Intel Corporation
Kristi DeShazo, Intel Corporation
Jennifer Krueger, New York Public Library
Kimberly Douglas , California Institute of Technology
Moderator: Beverly Colby, Arthur D. Little

Access to Scholarly Information via Professional Societies' Web Sites: Content, Means and Uses (SIG/STI)
This panel will address issues in accessing scholarly information via the digital library at professional societies' Web sites. The discussion will focus on the acquisition, selection and delivery of document content, the means and economy of access and the uses. A speaker from a professional society, a database producer and a corporate user will bring their perspectives to the audience. This panel will start with an introduction to the current situation in Web-based access to scholarly information via professional societies' Web sites, followed by the three speakers mentioned above. An on-site user survey may be conducted for speaker-audience interaction and discussion.
Elizabeth Snider , Chemical Abstracts Service
Svetla Baykoucheva, Manager of ACS Library Services, American Chemical Society, Content Management in a Professional Society/Publisher Environment
Nancy Cundiff , The Dow Chemical Company Business Intelligence Center
Moderator: Jian Qin, University of Southern Mississippi

Networked Resources for Environmental Decision Making (SIGs/IFP, STI)
Environmental decision making and natural resource management require information from sources that cross public and private sectors and multiple political jurisdictions. This session will explore the factors required to provide resource managers, policy makers and other stakeholders with information for environmental decision making. These include

  • variety of information sources;
  • selection, integration and quality evaluations needed to select from both current and legacy information sources;
  • information system requirements; and
  • coordination across sectors.

The panel will also discuss a research agenda needed to improve the development and evaluation of environmental decision support systems.
Deanne DiPietro, California Environmental Resources Evaluation System. Information for California's Resource Managers:The CERES Experience
Jim Quinn, University of California, Davis. Coordinating Information across Sectors and Jurisdictions: California's Biodiversity Council
Mark Fornwall, Center for Biological Informatics, US Geological Survey/ Biological Resources Division. Supporting Regional and National Policy Decisions: A Research Agenda for Biological Informatics
Gail Hodge , USGS/Biological Resources Division. The National Biological Information Infrastructure: Tools to Bridge the Gap
Bruce Bargmeyer, US Environmental Protection Agency. Developing an Environmental Metadata Registry
Moderator: Bonnie C. Carroll, Information International Associates, Inc.

Information Use in the Professions (Proto-SIG/USE)
Research findings and anecdotal evidence suggest significant changes in the information behavior of professionals who have ready access to databases and full text resources. Panelists in this session will describe the ways in which different professional groups (such as medicine, law and ministry) access and use information, with emphasis on how use patterns have changed with the introduction and assimilation of technology. The professions covered will vary significantly in the types of resources used and the amount of time that resources have been automated, ranging from law, automated in the early 1970s, to the much more recently automated divinity profession. The panel will consist of practitioners or researchers with expertise in working with particular professions, and their views will be critiqued by a discussant. The panel and the audience will be able to compare and contrast information behaviors across the professions.
Scott Adams, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Valerie Florance, American Association of Medical Colleges
Moderator: Nancy Roderer, Yale University

Accessing Knowledge Through the Window: Database Providers' Methods for Evaluating Network Interfaces (SIG/CRS)
Commercial database access vendors have recently shifted to graphical user interfaces and Web page formats. However, users of these vendored database products are not all in agreement about the actual appeal and usefulness of the new interfaces. To gain insight into the evaluation of network interfaces and the decision criteria employed by the vendors, this open forum discussion of specific questions posed to the vendors prior to the meeting will provide a basis for informal discussion with the audience.

Three or four leading commercial database access providers will be invited to discuss how their companies determine what the network interfaces should look like, what methods of evaluation and feedback they use to support these decisions and how they envision the future of these types of access systems in light of the network communication evolution. Questions will include

  • What evaluation or decision activities were undertaken in designing changes to the interface?
  • What studies or methods determine the effects of the interface on search efficiency and on user satisfaction?
  • Does your organization have a vision of the future interface of the network access method?
  • Has the Web/graphic interface impacted other aspects of your work with the databases and the network systems?

Daniel B. Pliske, Senior Director, Applied Research LEXIS-NEXIS
Joe Pryor, Dialog
Representative from OCLC
Representative from Ovid
Moderator: Vivian Hay, Getty Information Institute


The Next Wave of Z39.50 Implementation: Informed by Evaluation
The panel will inform attendees about the current status of several important Z39.50 implementations. In addition, these projects provide a lens on the complex challenges of networked discovery and retrieval across distributed resources. More importantly, the panel presentations will suggest evaluation techniques for understanding complex and interrelated technology deployments such as Z39.50-accessible databases. Finally, the panel will show the importance of ongoing evaluation of technologies such as Z39.50 to expose and define interoperability problems of networked information discovery and retrieval. Evaluation findings can aid in the creation of new solutions and pathways to successful technology implementations.
Carrol Lunau, Virtual Canadian Union Catalogue Project, National Library of Canada. Findings from the vCuc Experience [tentative]
Blue Angel Technologies/SILO Project [TBD]. Findings from the SILO Experience [tentative]
William E. Moen, University of North Texas. Putting Z39.50 Evaluation Findings to Use: The Z Texas Project
Moderator: William E. Moen , University of North Texas

Developing Performance Measures for Networked Information Resources and Services: Issues and Prospects
This panel will provide an overview of some recent activities in the development of performance measures for networked information services and resources in a library environment. McClure will give an overview of key issues affecting the development of such measures; Bertot will provide specific examples of possible performance measures; and Ford will update activities in the United Kingdom and Europe on developing such measures and how they are being used.
Charles R. McClure, Syracuse University
John C. Bertot, SUNY Albany
Geoffrey Ford, University of Bristol


The Effective Electronic Library. Peter Brophy, Manchester Metropolitan University

Networked Information Resources: A Review of Research Methodologies. Kathleen Murray, University of North Texas

Measuring the Impact of the WWW On Non-Work Based Tasks. John D'Ambra, University of New South Wales

Structural and Administrative Metadata for Digital Libraries: The Making of America II Project. Howard Besser, University of California, Berkeley

Alexandria Digital Library User and Use Evaluation: Experiments with a Neural Network Method for Log Data Analysis. Philip Sallis , University of Otago, NZ; Linda Hill, Mary Larsgaard, Kevin Lovette, Catherine Masi and Mary-Anna Rae, all Alexandria Digital Library Project, UCSB, Santa Barbara

Transaction Log Analysis in Web-based Information Systems. John Fieber, Indiana University

Methodologies for Using Electronic Surveys to Evaluate Networked Information Resources. Jonathan Lazar and Jennifer Preece, University of Maryland Baltimore County

Measurement and Evaluation of Federated Digital Libraries
The complex world of distributed heterogeneous digital libraries brings with it additional complexity in measurement and evaluation. Issues to be dealt with include the distributed nature of the digital library, the importance of user interfaces to the system and the need for systems approaches to deal with heterogeneity amongst the various components of the digital library.

In this panel session, these issues are explored from three perspectives. The work of the D-Lib Working Group on Digital Library Metrics is discussed (objective: to develop a consensus on usable and useful metrics to evaluate and compare the effectiveness of digital libraries and component technologies in a distributed environment). The D-Lib Test Suite is a group of digital library testbeds that are made available over the Internet for research in digital libraries, information management, collaboration, visualization and related disciplines. Finally, the Networked Computer Science Technical Reference Library (NCSTRL) is a confederation of over 100 institutions providing a federated library of computer science material, i.e., a seamless federation of collections and associated library services accessible to the broad community. Evaluation results and lessons from the NCSTRL environment are discussed.
Barry Leiner, Corporation for National Research Initiative
William Y. Arms, Corporation for National Research Initiatives
Carl Lagoze , Cornell University



Privacy, Electronic Commerce Resources and the Web: An Actor-Theoretic Examination of the P3P Project. Mark S. Ackerman, University of California, Irvine

Texts and Users: The Relevance of Humanities-Based Theories of Text Production to the Study of Networked Information Use. D. Grant Campbell, University of Western Ontario

Private Lives and Public Spaces. Gretchen Whitney, University of Tennessee, Knoxville


Authentication and Authorization: How Is It Being Implemented? (SIG/LAN)
Using networked information resources and services today increasingly involves controlling access to licensed databases or student coursework and course materials. This control requires some method of first identifying positively who the requesters are (authentication) and ensuring that they are allowed to enter that resource (authorization). What are the options for accomplishing this control? How are libraries, instructors and the university community handling this challenge?
Clifford Lynch, Coalition for Networked Information. An Overview of the Authentication and Authorization Challenge
Derek Brink, Gradient Technologies, Inc. Opening the Doors - Selectively - To the Big Ten Virtual Library
Sal Gurnani, California Digital Library. Certificate and Directory Based Access Control to Licensed Web Content
Moderator: Merri Beth Lavagnino , Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC)

Community Networks
CNI Research and Evaluation Activities: Methodological Issues Related to Evaluating User Needs and Outcomes Related to Community Information Systems. Ann P. Bishop, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Winners and Survivors: Evolution of Digital Community Networks. Linda Schamber, University of North Texas

Evaluation of Community Networks
Community networks (CNs) provide online information resources and communication tools to residents of particular geographic communities. They typically make extensive use of volunteers. A natural alliance exists between the goals and services of CNs and public libraries. Of special significance to LIS is the role that CNs play in reducing the "digital divide" that currently separates haves and have nots in the information age. CNs are a relatively new "genre" of information system, which raises special problems in assessing user needs and outcomes. The panel will describe efforts to evaluate the use and impact of CNs and discuss conceptual and methodological issues in this realm.
Gregory Newby, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Phil Agre, University of California at Los Angeles
Douglas Schuler , author of New Community Networks: Wired for Change
Joan Durrance, University of Michigan
Moderator: Ann Bishop, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Distance Education
Web-based Course Delivery: The Effect of the Medium on Student Learning and Use of Library-based Resources. Vicki L. Gregory, James Carey and Derrie R. Perez, University of South Florida
Evaluating a Gateway to Faculty Syllabi (GFS) on the Internet. Sam G. Oh, Sung Kyun Kwan University

Network Access to Visual Information: A Study of Costs and Uses (SIGs/AH, VIS)
This session will outline the findings of the Mellon-sponsored study of digital image distribution focusing on the Museum Educational Site Licensing Project (MESL). In the MESL project seven repositories supplied an identical set of 10,000 images and accompanying descriptive metadata to seven universities, and each university mounted this information within its own customized delivery system. The study evaluated the costs, infrastructure and efforts involved in implementing the MESL project, as well as user reaction to functionality. The study also examined costs of running analog slide libraries and compared these to costs and functionality associated with digital image distribution.

Panelists will discuss the cost-center models used to examine the distribution of digital and analog images, including creating digital images and metadata, mounting and distributing digital images, maintaining a distribution house, running a slide library and an analysis of hybrid image libraries. They will present a comparison of user interfaces and search engines from the MESL universities. They will also report on the results of focus groups discussing faculty adoption of digital images for classroom use.
Howard Besser, University of California, Berkeley
Robert Yamashita , California State University, San Marcos
Rosalie Lack, University of California, Berkeley
Joanne Miller, University of California, Berkeley
Lena Stebley, San Jose State University
Moderator: Howard Besser, University of California, Berkeley

IR Evaluation
Cognitive Approach to Feedback in Information Retrieval Applied to the Design of "Enabling" Devices for Undergraduates. Charles Cole, Concordia University

Evaluation of a Visualization System for Information Retrieval at the Front End and the Back End. Gregory B. Newby , University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Show Me the Pictures! or Evaluation Studies of Art Image Retrieval. Samantha Kelly Hastings and T. J. Russell, University of North Texas



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@ 1999, American Society for Information Science