William Y. Arms

William Y. Arms is Professor of Computer Science at Cornell University.

  • Digital Libraries

    Digital Libraries

    William Y. Arms

    The emergence of the Internet and the wide availability of affordable computing equipment have created tremendous interest in digital libraries and electronic publishing. This book is the first to provide an integrated overview of the field, including a historical perspective, the state of the art, and current research. The term "digital libraries" covers the creation and distribution of all types of information over networks, ranging from converted historical materials to kinds of information that have no analogues in the physical world. In some ways digital libraries and traditional libraries are very different, yet in other ways they are remarkably similar. People still create information that has to be organized, stored, and distributed, and they still need to find and use information that others have created. An underlying theme of this book is that no aspect of digital libraries can be understood in isolation or without attention to the needs of the people who create and use information. Although the book covers a wide range of technical, economic, social, and organizational topics, the focus is on the actual working components of a digital library.

    • Hardcover $75.00
    • Paperback $35.00 £28.00


  • Georeferencing


    The Geographic Associations of Information

    Linda L. Hill

    An introduction to the principles of unified georeferencing, which uses placename and geospatial referencing interchangeably across all types of information storage and retrieval systems.

    Georeferencing—relating information to geographic location—has been incorporated into today's information systems in various ways. We use online services to map our route from one place to another; science, business, and government increasingly use geographic information systems (GIS) to hold and analyze data. Most georeferenced information searches using today's information systems are done by text query. But text searches for placenames fall short—when, for example, a place is known by several names (or by none). In addition, text searches don't cover all sources of geographic data; maps are traditionally accessed only through special indexes, filing systems, and agency contacts; data from remote sensing images or aerial photography is indexed by geospatial location (mathematical coordinates such as longitude and latitude). In this book, Linda Hill describes the advantages of integrating placename-based and geospatial referencing, introducing an approach to "unified georeferencing" that uses placename and geospatial referencing interchangeably across all types of information storage and retrieval systems.

    After a brief overview of relevant material from cognitive psychology on how humans perceive and respond to geographic space, Hill introduces the reader to basic information about geospatial information objects, concepts of geospatial referencing, the role of gazetteer data, the ways in which geospatial referencing has been included in metadata structures, and methods for the implementation of geographic information retrieval (GIR). Georeferencing will be a valuable reference for librarians, archivists, scientific data managers, information managers, designers of online services, and any information professional who deals with place-based information.

    • Hardcover $8.75 £6.99
    • Paperback $4.75 £3.99
  • The Access Principle

    The Access Principle

    The Case for Open Access to Research and Scholarship

    John Willinsky

    An argument for extending the circulation of knowledge with new publishing technologies considers scholarly, economic, philosophical, and practical issues.

    Questions about access to scholarship go back farther than recent debates over subscription prices, rights, and electronic archives suggest. The great libraries of the past—from the fabled collection at Alexandria to the early public libraries of nineteenth-century America—stood as arguments for increasing access. In The Access Principle, John Willinsky describes the latest chapter in this ongoing story—online open access publishing by scholarly journals—and makes a case for open access as a public good.

    A commitment to scholarly work, writes Willinsky, carries with it a responsibility to circulate that work as widely as possible: this is the access principle. In the digital age, that responsibility includes exploring new publishing technologies and economic models to improve access to scholarly work. Wide circulation adds value to published work; it is a significant aspect of its claim to be knowledge. The right to know and the right to be known are inextricably mixed. Open access, argues Willinsky, can benefit both a researcher-author working at the best-equipped lab at a leading research university and a teacher struggling to find resources in an impoverished high school.

    Willinsky describes different types of access—the New England Journal of Medicine, for example, grants open access to issues six months after initial publication, and First Monday forgoes a print edition and makes its contents immediately accessible at no cost. He discusses the contradictions of copyright law, the reading of research, and the economic viability of open access. He also considers broader themes of public access to knowledge, human rights issues, lessons from publishing history, and "epistemological vanities." The debate over open access, writes Willinsky, raises crucial questions about the place of scholarly work in a larger world—and about the future of knowledge.

    • Hardcover $36.95 £30.00
    • Paperback $9.75 £7.99
  • TREC


    Experiment and Evaluation in Information Retrieval

    Ellen M. Voorhees and Donna K. Harman

    Results from twelve years of the Text REtrieval Conference (TREC), documenting test collections, evaluation standards, and current best practices.

    The Text REtrieval Conference (TREC), a yearly workshop hosted by the US government's National Institute of Standards and Technology, provides the infrastructure necessary for large-scale evaluation of text retrieval methodologies. With the goal of accelerating research in this area, TREC created the first large test collections of full-text documents and standardized retrieval evaluation. The impact has been significant; since TREC's beginning in 1992, retrieval effectiveness has approximately doubled. TREC has built a variety of large test collections, including collections for such specialized retrieval tasks as cross-language retrieval and retrieval of speech. Moreover, TREC has accelerated the transfer of research ideas into commercial systems, as demonstrated in the number of retrieval techniques developed in TREC that are now used in Web search engines.This book provides a comprehensive review of TREC research, summarizing the variety of TREC results, documenting the best practices in experimental information retrieval, and suggesting areas for further research. The first part of the book describes TREC's history, test collections, and retrieval methodology. Next, the book provides "track" reports—describing the evaluations of specific tasks, including routing and filtering, interactive retrieval, and retrieving noisy text. The final part of the book offers perspectives on TREC from such participants as Microsoft Research, University of Massachusetts, Cornell University, University of Waterloo, City University of New York, and IBM. The book will be of interest to researchers in information retrieval and related technologies, including natural language processing.

    • Hardcover $10.75 £8.99
  • Digital Library Use

    Digital Library Use

    Social Practice in Design and Evaluation

    Ann Peterson-Kemp, Nancy A. Van House, and Barbara P. Buttenfield

    Viewing digital libraries as sociotechnical systems, networks of people and technology interacting with society.

    The contributors to this volume view digital libraries (DLs) from a social as well as technological perspective. They see DLs as sociotechnical systems, networks of technology, information artifacts, and people and practices interacting with the larger world of work and society. As Bruce Schatz observes in his foreword, for a digital library to be useful, the users, the documents, and the information system must be in harmony. The contributors begin by asking how we evaluate DLs—how we can understand them in order to build better DLs—but they move beyond these basic concerns to explore how DLs make a difference in people's lives and their social worlds, and what studying DLs might tell us about information, knowledge, and social and cognitive processes. The chapters, using both empirical and analytical methods, examine the social impact of DLs and also the web of social and material relations in which DLs are embedded; these far-ranging social worlds include such disparate groups as community activists, environmental researchers, middle-school children, and computer system designers.

    Topics Documents and society • the real boundaries of a "library without walls" • the ecologies of digital libraries • usability and evaluation • information and institutional change • transparency as a product of the convergence of social practices and information artifacts • and collaborative knowledge construction in digital libraries

    • Hardcover $45.00 £38.00
    • Paperback $30.00 £25.00
  • The Intellectual Foundation of Information Organization

    The Intellectual Foundation of Information Organization

    Elaine Svenonius

    Integrating the disparate disciplines of descriptive cataloging, subject cataloging, indexing, and classification, the book adopts a conceptual framework that views the process of organizing information as the use of a special language of description called a bibliographic language.

    Instant electronic access to digital information is the single most distinguishing attribute of the information age. The elaborate retrieval mechanisms that support such access are a product of technology. But technology is not enough. The effectiveness of a system for accessing information is a direct function of the intelligence put into organizing it. Just as the practical field of engineering has theoretical physics as its underlying base, the design of systems for organizing information rests on an intellectual foundation. The subject of this book is the systematized body of knowledge that constitutes this foundation.

    Integrating the disparate disciplines of descriptive cataloging, subject cataloging, indexing, and classification, the book adopts a conceptual framework that views the process of organizing information as the use of a special language of description called a bibliographic language. The book is divided into two parts. The first part is an analytic discussion of the intellectual foundation of information organization. The second part moves from generalities to particulars, presenting an overview of three bibliographic languages: work languages, document languages, and subject languages. It looks at these languages in terms of their vocabulary, semantics, and syntax.

    The book is written in an exceptionally clear style, at a level that makes it understandable to those outside the discipline of library and information science.

    • Hardcover $46.00 £38.00
    • Paperback $30.00 £25.00
  • From Gutenberg to the Global Information Infrastructure

    From Gutenberg to the Global Information Infrastructure

    Access to Information in the Networked World

    Christine L. Borgman

    Will the emerging global information infrastructure (GII) create a revolution in communication equivalent to that wrought by Gutenberg, or will the result be simply the evolutionary adaptation of existing behavior and institutions to new media? Will the GII improve access to information for all? Will it replace libraries and publishers? How can computers and information systems be made easier to use? What are the trade-offs between tailoring information systems to user communities and standardizing them to interconnect with systems designed for other communities, cultures, and languages? This book takes a close look at these and other questions of technology, behavior, and policy surrounding the GII. Topics covered include the design and use of digital libraries; behavioral and institutional aspects of electronic publishing; the evolving role of libraries; the life cycle of creating, using, and seeking information; and the adoption and adaptation of information technologies. The book takes a human-centered perspective, focusing on how well the GII fits into the daily lives of the people it is supposed to benefit. Taking a unique holistic approach to information access, the book draws on research and practice in computer science, communications, library and information science, information policy, business, economics, law, political science, sociology, history, education, and archival and museum studies. It explores both domestic and international issues. The author's own empirical research is complemented by extensive literature reviews and analyses.

    • Hardcover $50.00
    • Paperback $7.75 £5.99