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Investigating Automated Assistance and Implicit Feedback for Searching Systems

Bernard J. Jansen Michael D. McNeese

Presented at ASIST 2004 Annual Meeting; "Managing and Enhancing Information: Cultures and Conflicts" (ASIST AM 04), Providence, Rhode Island, November 13 - 18, 2004


Information retrieval systems offering personalized automated assistance have the potential to improve the searching process. There has been much work in this area for several years on a variety of systems. However, there has been little empirical evaluation of automated assistance to determine if it is of real benefit for searchers. We report the results of empirical evaluation investigate how searchers use implicit feedback and automated assistance during the searching process. Results from the empirical evaluation indicate that searchers typically use multiple implicit feedback actions, usually bookmark copy. The most commonly utilized automated assistance was for query refinement, notable the use of the thesaurus. We discuss the implications for Web systems and future research.

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