Designing a thesaurus-based comparison search interface for linked cultural heritage sources
Proceedings of the 15th international conference on Intelligent user interfaces - IUI '10
Comparison search is an information seeking task where a user examines individual items or sets of items for similarities and differences. While this is a known information need among experts and knowledge workers, appropriate tools are not available. In this paper, we discuss comparison search in the cultural heritage domain, a domain characterized by large, rich and heterogeneous data sets, where different organizations deploy different schemata and terminologies to describe their artifacts.
... his diversity makes meaningful comparison difficult. We developed a thesaurus-based comparison search application called LISA, a tool that allows a user to search, select and compare sets of artifacts. Different visualizations allow users to use different comparison strategies to cope with the underlying heterogeneous data and the complexity of the search tasks. We conducted two user studies. A preliminary study identified the problems experts face while performing comparison search tasks. A second user study examined the effectiveness of LISA in helping to solve comparison search tasks. The main contribution of this paper is to establish design guidelines for the data and interface of a comparison search application. Moreover, we offer insights into when thesauri and metadata are appropriate for use in such applications.