Journal of the Association for Information Science



Bert R. Boyce









A. Bookstein

Records of circulation history have obvious value for research and management and retrieval effectiveness. Bookstein shows that information on usage counts and linkages between patrons and items can be retained and utilized while maintaining confidentiality. If one links the patron ID file with the historical use data by using a transforming function which computes easily from patron to circulation data, but not easily from use data to patron identity, some degree of security is maintained.

A retrieval system based on circulation data would be required to return those other items checked out by the patrons who had checked out some percentage of the items on a query list. Both direct matching and a weighted vector model are analyzed to show that efficiency and patron privacy can both be maintained.

Labeled, Typed Links as Cues when Reading Hypertext Documents
Lisa Baron, Jean Tague-Sutcliffe, Mark T. Kinnucan, and Tom Carey

A hypertext link may be organizational in the sense that its purpose is to indicate the structure of the document as organized for presentation. Baron, Tague-Sutcliffe, Kinnucan, and Carey test three classes of other than organizational links. Semantic links represent associations among words. Rhetorical links are used to create a path which will convince or educate a reader. Pragmatic links express a relation between a text and its possible use.

Subjects in a browsing task were tested on content assimilation, and surveyed as to attitude toward the system. In the querying task subjects were asked a series of data specific questions using the system while accuracy, time and number of screens viewed were recorded. Labeling reduced the use of semantic links but had little effect on the use of rhetoric or pragmatic links. No significant learning change was indicated by the use of labels in the browsing task. Labels lead to significantly higher scores in the querying task. Attitudes did not vary in the browsing task, and overall impressions did not vary in the querying task. However, participants without labels found it more difficult to move between topics, and those with labels felt more comfortable moving sequentially through the file than did those without, even though they did not use this technique more than others.

Experiments with a Stemming Algorithm for Malay Words
Fatimah Ahmad, Mohammed Yusoff, and Tengku M. T. Sembok

Past work on stemming algorithms has concentrated on the removal of suffixes. Ahmad, Yusoff, and Sembok point out that in languages like Malay or Arabic variant formation depends on prefixes as well as suffixes. Othman's algorithm uses 121 morphological rules and a large Malay dictionary which is a necessary supplement to avoid high error rates in stemming Malay words. After increasing the number of rules in the set to 432 (or 561 for modern derivatives), both an initial dictionary scan and the use of prefix rules improve stemming performance.

The Effectiveness of the Electronic City Metaphor for Organizing the Menus of Free-Nets
Elaine G. Toms and Mark T. Kinnucan

In free-nets community resources are often accessed via a menu using the names of fictitious buildings as entry points. Predicting that a everyday language menu would be easier for the average user, Toms and Kinnucan test this sort of menu against an electronic city metaphor menu. The number of top level menu choices was significantly lower (better) for the nonmetaphor menu and this group showed significantly improved results in the second test. The nonmetaphor group also improved in terms of number of correct answers in the second test. No significant time differences were apparent. In response to preference questions over 90% found the nonmetaphor menu easier to understand.

The Modern Language Association: Electronic and Paper Surveys of Computer-Based Tool Use
Debora Shaw and Charles H. Davis

The Shaw and Davis survey indicates that the members of the Modern Language Association are rapidly increasing their use of computer based productivity tools. They are likely to have personal computers in their homes, if not in their workplace, and to be users of word processing software, electronic mail and remote access searching of bibliographic databases and catalogs. The sample was equally divided between a paper and electronic mail survey. There are significant differences in several of the responses of the two subgroups indicating that reliance solely on electronic survey instruments may be misleading.

The Contributions of Organizational Science to the Development of Decision Support Systems Research Subspecialties
Sean B. Eom and Roy S. Farris

Using three previous bibliographies of the Decision Support System literature, a database of citing papers was assembled by Eom and Farris. An author cocitation matrix was then constructed and a factor analysis yielded nine factors with eigenvalues greater than 1 and accounting for 85% of the variance. A clustering procedure gave additional input for interpretation, and Multidimensional Scaling provides a picture of the relative position of author clusters to one another.











The Internet Compendium: Subject Guides to Health and Science Resources, by Louis Rosenfeld, Joseph Janes, and Martha Vander Kolk
Reviewed by: J. R. Jackson

Computerization and Controversy: Value Conflicts and Social Choices (2nd Ed.), edited by Rob Kling
Reviewed by: Thomas A. Peters

Educational Services in Health Sciences Libraries. Volume 2: Current Practice in Health Sciences Librarianship, edited by Francesca Allegri
Reviewed by: Linda S. Bixler





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Last update: November 06, 1998