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Volume 17 / Issue 6

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DOI:   10.3217/jucs-017-06-0831


A Framework to Evaluate Interface Suitability for a Given Scenario of Textual Information Retrieval

Nicolas Bonnel (ThinkCollabs, France)

Max Chevalier (Université de Toulouse, France)

Claude Chrisment (Université de Toulouse, France)

Gilles Hubert (Université de Toulouse, France)

Abstract: Visualization of search results is an essential step in the textual Information Retrieval (IR) process. Indeed, Information Retrieval Interfaces (IRIs) are used as a link between users and IR systems, a simple example being the ranked list proposed by common search engines. Due to the importance that takes visualization of search results, many interfaces have been proposed in the last decade (which can be textual, 2D or 3D IRIs). Two kinds of evaluation methods have been developed: (1) various evaluation methods of these interfaces were proposed aiming at validating ergonomic and cognitive aspects; (2) various evaluation methods were applied on information retrieval systems (IRS) aiming at measuring their effectiveness. However, as far as we know, these two kinds of evaluation methods are disjoint. Indeed, considering a given IRI associated to a given IRS, what happens if we associate this IRI to another IRS not having the same effectiveness. In this context, we propose an IRI evaluation framework aimed at evaluating the suitability of any IRI to different IR scenarios. First of all, we define the notion of IR scenario as a combination of features related to users, IR tasks and IR systems. We have implemented the framework through a specific evaluation platform that enables performing IRI evaluations and that helps end-users (e.g. IRS developers or IRI designers) in choosing the most suitable IRI for a specific IR scenario.

Keywords: interface suitability for IR scenario, textual information retrieval systems, visual information retrieval

Categories: H.3.3