Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Search engine experts look forwards to completely digital lives and backwards to Washington’s letters

26.07.2004


A conference at the University of Sheffield is set to celebrate ten years since the first Web search engines, and will reveal some of the capabilities of search engines of the future, and the way that our use of computers will lead them to new ways of archiving and retrieving information. Presentations at the conference will include ways that we can store and search through every personal document we have ever received, and another paper will use George Washington’s letters to demonstrate a new search system that is able to analyse and sift through handwritten pages, even using historical texts, which have notoriously ornate handwriting.

Mark Sanderson, of the Department of Computer Science at the University of Sheffield, is hosting the conference He explains, “It is particularly apt that we should be celebrating ten years of search engines here as we believe that the first web search engine was British. It was called Jumpstation and was created in the University of Stirling and released in early 1994.

The keynote speaker for the conference is Gordon Bell, from the Microsoft Bay Area Research Centre. His particular area of interest is a project called MyLifeBits, which looks at how our information needs will change as computer hard discs allow us to store our whole lives on our PC.



Dr Bell explains, “Within five years PCs will be large enough to store everything we read, write, hear and see including video, images and emails.”

“MyLifeBits looks at how we can digitally store everything – from financial records to the books we read and the songs we listen to, photos, telephone calls and even the web pages we have visited.

“This has great implications for allowing us to move to a truly paperless society, but also means that trawling through swathes of our own personal data will become very difficult without an effective system in place.

“MyLifeBits works on the premise that you don’t think about personal information in the same way as you do other people’s data, so a traditional search engine approach would be unhelpful for personal information. For example, you may think of a personal document in relation to the time you received it (maybe around the same time as an important life changing event), rather than in key words. MyLifeBits will hopefully provide the flexibility to search in more creative ways.”

Researchers from the Center for Intelligent Information retrieval at the University of Massachusetts will be presenting a paper entitled, “A Search Engine for Historical Manuscript Pages.”

Raghavan Manmatha will be demonstrating a new search tool that allows the search of historical, handwritten texts, without expensive and time consuming manual annotations.

He explains, “At the moment historical texts can only be accessed digitally as image files and searching them involves somebody inputting key search terms in a way that the computer can understand, this is a time consuming and expensive process, and inhibits the number of historical documents we can access electronically.

“We have developed a system whereby the computer ‘learns’ the handwriting after you transcribe a small proportion of the pages.

“We have used George Washington’s letters to develop the system and after transcribing 100 pages of his writing, the computer was able to search 987 pages of text, with a much lower error rate than by using traditional handwriting recogniser.

“This work not only has relevance to historical works but could also eventually come into common usage so that individuals can scan and search their entire record of handwritten information, for example letters, lecture notes or brainstorming notes.”

Lorna Branton | alfa
Further information:
http://www.shef.ac.uk
http://sigir.org/sigir2004/

More articles from Communications Media:

nachricht Product placement: Only brands placed very prominently benefit from 3D technology
07.07.2016 | Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt

nachricht NASA Goddard network maintains communications from space to ground
02.03.2016 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

All articles from Communications Media >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>