Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Federated Search:

State of the Art

Jeff Wisnewski & Frank Cervone

Quick overview

What is federated searching

What does context-sensitive linking have to do with it

How does federated searching work?

What problems could a federated search engine solve?

o provide a single interface to information resources

o provide a unified query interface supporting simultaneous searching of multiple resources

o Consolidate search results

§ Without eliminating the potential

What is federated searching?

o Interface between user and multiple databases

o Usually isn’t clear what database they get the info from

Standard features

o Support for multiple protocols

o Simple and advanced search

§ Search by specific field

o Post processing of results

§ Combined result sets with deduplication

o Statistics

Advanced features

o Integration with other software

§ Courseware

§ Bibliographic management

o Advanced result display

§ Clustering

§ Visualization

o Context sensitive linking

What is context sensitive linking?

o Go from a database to full text results in other source?

How is it done? Open URL

o Standard for persistently identifying content

o Provides a mechanism for encoding to link to and from


o Database provides Open URL which goes to our OpenURL resolver

o OpenURL resolver parses request for article and then brings up a target list of where we have access to the article

o Relating sources to targets and services

§ EBSCO ASP (get Full Txt, get TOC

§ JSTOR (get full txt)

§ Cosnortial catalog (get holding

§ Periodical Abstracts (get abstracts)

So who’s on top?

o From LJ Automated System Marketplace 2006

o Top vendors Webfeat, ExLibris

NKOTB (not the boy band)

o Enhancements to “traditional” federated search services

o Built-in content platform

§ CSA Illumina

o Replacement of products

§ Discovery… (Endeavor) {removed ENCompass, LinkFinder Plus}

· Now based on TDNet technology

· Discovery: Finder

o Replaces ENCompass for resource access

o Hosted service

o Pricing based on number of searchable databases

o Generates topic maps and clusters dynamically

o Customizable via css

o Personalization (extra cost option)

o Relies on Discover: Resolver for OpenURL resolution

§ Replaces LinkFinder

o Visualization of results

§ Aquabrowser !!! Used to focus solely on the catalog now getting into federated searching

§ Grokker in Ebsco for visualization of results

§ Vivisimo now provides federated search.

§ ExLibris will be incorporating Vivisimo into MetaLib

§ Ovid

· Based on Muse technology

· Hosted

· Results post-processing

· Customizable, branded

§ Webfeat Prism

· Knows of no other single way to get patrons to really use the databases and increase their full-text retrievals. (anecdotally, 100-200% increase in usage stats)

o Express services

§ Webfeat

· Hosted

· 7850 for an annual subscription

· Several interface choices

o Brandable

· OpenURL compliant

· ProCite/EndNote compatible

· Ebsco A-Z Integration

Fretwell-Downing – OCLC PICA

o FDI Portal

§ www.fdgroup.com/fdi/marketing/zportal_choice.html

o OL2

§ www.fdgroup.com/fdi/pdf/OL2overview.html

Who else is in the game?

o LOTS of folks

§ OpenSiteSearch (open source product!!) z39.50 solution


o Vendors migrating slowly, to XML gateways

o Integration with bibliographic management software

o More integration of visualization and clustering tools

o Federated search for the masses? (WebFeat Express)

Google Scholar/Microsoft Academic Live

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