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Collaborative Query Previews in Digital Libraries. Lin Fu, Dion Goh, Schubert Foo Division of Information Studies School of Communication and Information Nanyang Technological University. Presentation Overview. Background Query Previews and Collaborative Filtering

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Collaborative query previews in digital libraries

Collaborative Query Previews in Digital Libraries

Lin Fu, Dion Goh, Schubert Foo

Division of Information Studies

School of Communication and Information

Nanyang Technological University

Presentation overview
Presentation Overview

  • Background

  • Query Previews and Collaborative Filtering

  • Collaborative Query Previews (CQPs)

  • System Design and Implementation

  • Advantages of the System

  • Future work


  • Information Overload:

    • World Wide Web

    • Digital libraries

  • Information Seeking:

    • Information seeking is a broad term encompassing the ways individuals articulate their information needs, seek, evaluate, select and use information (Lokman & Stephanie, 2001)

    • Collaboration and communication are important

    • Pre-Query Information (PQI)

      • Information needs

      • Information system

      • Knowledge of the collection

Use of PQI in Information Retrieval

Information Needs



Physical Collections

Pre-Query Information



Information Systems

Digital Library


Collection Knowledge

Structure of the Collection

Domain knowledge

Example of collection knowledge
Example of Collection Knowledge

  • Suppose a user wants to search a paper on overview-detail style interface but does not know the title, and also a novice in this field.

  • The user enters “interface” or “overview, detail” as the query. However, nothing in the top 50 results rings a bell

  • Someone else searching for the same paper might remember its name clearly (“Reading of Electronic Documents: The Usability of Linear, Fisheye, and Overview+Detail Interfaces”). He knows that using “fisheye, overview, detail” as the query keyword will yield a good result

Concept 1 query previews
Concept 1: Query Previews

  • Definition:

    • Query previews provide an overview about the data distribution in a data collection (Greene et al., 1999).

    • Overviews are represented as aggregate information on attributes of the collection---known as summary data.

    • The summary data is displayed using various visualization techniques: histograms, timelines.

Advantages of query previews
Advantages of Query Previews:

  • Reduce queries with zero or large number of hits.

  • Prevent the retrieval of undesired records.

  • Represent statistical information of the database visually

Concept 2 collaborative filtering
Concept 2: Collaborative Filtering

  • Definition:

    • Collaborative filtering is a technique for recommending items to a user based on similarities between the past behavior of the user and that of likeminded people (Chun & Hong, 2001)

  • Examples:

    • Tapestry: a system that can filter information according to other users’ annotations (Goldberg, Nichols, Oki & Terry, 1992)

    • GroupLens: a recommender system using user ratings of documents (Resnick , Courtiat & Villemur, 2001)

Advantages of collaborative filtering
Advantages of Collaborative Filtering

  • Use the community for knowledge sharing.

  • Select high quality items from a large information stream.

Limitations of existing techniques
Limitationsof Existing Techniques

  • Query Previews:

    • Lack of support for communication and collaboration.

  • Collaborative Filtering:

    • Lack of support for gathering PQI.

Collaborative query previews cqps
Collaborative Query Previews (CQPs)

  • CQP is an integrated approach to augment information seeking by supporting collaboration and communication during the process of gathering PQI.

  • CQPs generate an overview about a data collection through a set of aggregate information.

  • CQPs introduce a collaborative aspect by providing recommendations of queries.

Collaborative query previews cqps1
Collaborative Query Previews (CQPs)

  • Direct Previews of the Data Collection:

    • Through the aggregate information on selected attributes, users can get familiar with the structure of the database.

  • Recommendation of Queries:

    • Through collaborative filtering techniques, CQPs recommend related queries previously executed by other users to help the current user make better sense of how the document collection met past information needs that coincide with the present information need.

Design and implementation
Design and Implementation

  • Introduction:

    • ZWE provides an integrated platform for supporting a variety of scholarly tasks including browsing, querying, organizing and annotating of information resources (Goh, Fu & Foo, 2002) using a spatial metaphor.

    • ZWE supports the entire process of information seeking by incorporating CQPs.

Design and implementation1
Design and Implementation

Artifacts (photos, metadata, annotations)

Recommended queries



Query previews



Result lists






Design and implementation2
Design and Implementation

Zoomable Work Environment

User Management




Query Previews





Metadata Repository

Multimedia Repository

Past Queries


User Profiles


Design and implementation3
Design and Implementation

  • JAZZ: a Zoomable User Interface (ZUI) API that allows developers to quickly and easily build zoomable information spaces.

Design and implementation4

Tamino Manager


Schema Editor




Interactive Tools



X-Query Tools

Design and Implementation

  • Tamino XML Server: a platform to build an XML based information retrieval system.

Design and implementation5
Design and Implementation

  • For query recommendation module, we proposed a hybrid approach (Fu, Goh & Foo, 2003a, 2003b) to cluster past queries and apply the algorithms to find similar past queries for a given query.

  • Experiments show that our hybrid algorithm outperforms the existing query clustering approach.

Advantages of proposed system
Advantages of Proposed System

  • Integerated work environment: more interactive, zoomable. Multifaceted information artifacts. Generic framework.

  • CQPs support the information seeking process from two perspectives:

    • From direct previews of the data collection.

    • From queries issued previously by others.

Future work
Future Work

  • With the initial prototype developed, the next phase of this work will focus on the evaluation of CQPs by users of the digital library.

  • Continuing research is also being carried out to improve the aspects of query clustering by further investigating the use of hybrid approaches, including content-based, feedback-based and result-based approaches.

Thank you for more information schubert foo vd sci@ntu edu sg
Thank YouFor more informationSchubert Foo [email protected]