Linguistic storm: an essential information retrieval tool to update researchers
1 Dirección General de Bibliotecas, UNAM. Abstract: Shows linguistic storm’s utility and efficiency through controlled vocabulary matrices. A controlled vocabulary matrix construction is described, as well as the obtained results from different academic and commercial information systems. The obtained results indicate the semantic universe that researcher must consider to confirm, modify or change their research papers and trends.
Rafael Ibarra C. 1 Dirección General de Bibliotecas, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México.
Abstract: This paper shows the succesful application of a cards game to collect appropriate outcomes from Google and/or Google Scholar. The didactic cards game represent a decisive didactic alternative for young researchers looking for information in either of the Google’s services or similar search engines, including commercial information providers such as Elsevier, Proquest and EBSCO. The cards comprehend a series of linguistic characteristics: purposes, verbs, direct objects, connectors, and instruments that represent profitable utility in all varieties of libraries and in almost any language when the target language is English. Results are presented.
Keywords: Information Retrieval, IR, Controlled vocabulary, Natural language Information Systems, Linguistics, Lingstorm, Semantics, Infopragmatics, Pragmatics researchers
Abstract: Shows linguistic storm’s utility and efficiency through controlled vocabulary matrices. A controlled vocabulary matrix construction is described, as well as the obtained results from different academic and commercial information systems. The obtained results indicate the semantic universe that researcher must consider to confirm, modify or change their research papers and trends.
Keywords: Information Retrieval, IR, Controlled vocabulary, Natural language Information Systems, Linguistics, Lingstorm, Semantics, Infopragmatics, Pragmatics
Young researchers wish to be updated on their field of knowledge at an international level to warrant the handling of the emerging science trends, to publish their findings in indexed traditional or open access journals, to high- rank their schools as a result of publishing productivity and to assure their school grants. However, to achieve these goals, young researchers must face three barriers: chaotic interfaces of the Commercial Academic Information Systems (CAIS) and severe limitations of linguistic help; English language appropriate management and absence of controlled vocabulary awareness. In this paper we suggest a linguistic storm (Lingstorm) as an efficient solution to beat these three hurdles.
CAIS’ chaotic interfaces present dozens of elements that are of poor utility to novice users and “a cumbersome key (F1) that clearly shows how unsuitable they might be for the numerous users kinds”, Ibarra, (2010). Furthermore, as Katsirikou and Skiadas (2001) suggest: “there are 23 processing actions that comprise the opening and the closing dialog in an information request that go from finding the appropriate electronic resource to indirectly and unwittingly provide personal information on one’s activities, no matter the language. Expert users may as well avoid those elements that are of no interest for them, but what can novice users do?”
On the other hand, as science is internationally developed by different researchers, and into different languages and characters, young researchers (YR), whose native language is not English, commit a big variety of mistakes: bad spelling, wrong affixation, iterative use of natural language, and the absence of lexical availability to establish and plan their search strategies. So, with no plan and lack of linguistic availability in English, what YR may use as search words?
Generally, controlled vocabulary is acquired by the years of reading especialised literature and attending school and fora related to their academic
fields. As undergraduates, masters or Ph Doctors, YR may spend several years to achieve a satisfactory linguistic competence. When YRs start to search for information, they usually overlook controlled vocabulary terms. Mainly because of two reasons: 1) they do not know linguistic tools (thesauri, ontologies, subject headings, indices, specialized dictionaries and key words).
2) They simply “feel lucky” and begin two common unwritten basic strategies: top-down, they restrict their search by collecting “new and appropriate” terms as they appear while they read; or bottom-up, doing the reversal method, from a specific term to a more general one. In my experience, as an instructor in a workshop called Publish Your Research in Indexed Journals, when approaching to the linguistic tools, YR admit they are not familiar with them. They also admit to use no method or technique for their information search.
However, with the linguistic tools describe above, YR may break the rule of spending several years before becoming familiar and manage controlled vocabulary by means of a tool called linguistic storm (Lingstorm).
A Lingstorm is a matrix composed of a combination of controlled vocabulary terms derived from the user’s research purpose. That is, YRs must write a verb that best describes their purpose and the direct object of the verb, followed be the phrase by means of and complemented by their method, instrument or technique they used. For example1:
To assess metallurgic slag as Fenton-like catalyst on disinfection water by means of slag- H2O2- solar light
From this sentence, YRs must take those terms they consider as having the key weight; and, then, have some of the available linguistic tool to obtain a controlled vocabulary matrix.
Then, YR must do the 27 combinations of the elements involved. The terms, from A’ to C’’, were collected from the thesaurus integrated in the Engineering Village Database, from Elsevier. The hits were as shown in the following table:
1 This was a real example taken from a young researcher enrolled in the workshop, Publish Your Research in Indexed Journals, offered by the School of Chemistry. The instructor was the author of this paper.
The YR comments expressed on the use of the matrix were:
The search was useful for my paper. If I use only two terms the results were
By combining the main terms with the related terms, I obtained:
By using the thesaurus I could refine the papers search related with my field of study. I found, at least, two papers of great interest. I could identified a candidate journal to publish my research: Chemosphere.
Considering the previous experience, we are in a position to reflect on the involved actors results by means of 3 Dimension Model, that can be used as a self-test, regarding the information retrieval habits anyone may have, and in almost any language.
In almost every search strategy we can easily identify the most common elements that can influence, for better or for worse, the experience in IR. These elements are, on axis X, from the origin to the left, the search engines that are usually banned from tutors to YRs to retrieve information. On the opposite side, the CAIS that are accepted, including the emerging Discovery Services systems. On axis Z, from the origin to the front, the use of natural language; in the opposite direction, the controlled vocabulary and the tools that can ease lexical availability to build up a Lingstorm. And, on axis Y, the humans involved on satisfying their information needs, according to their academic level.
With this IR3DM, almost all YRs can interestingly self-test their ability to retrieve pertinent information.
So far, by creating a Lingstorm the results of some YRs (Spanish Native Speakers) attending a publishing workshop have reported interesting clues that can be of great help to their colleagues whose native language is not, but may be, English.
Among some other thought-provoking reports, here is a list of the comments concerning time invested, field of study and profits from YRs.
Along the experience in utilising the Lingstorm, as a central element of the Infopragmatics, YRs, may
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