Search: April 2011 Archives

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Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox, April 11, 2011  

Very interesting, short article about strategies in web searching and its effect on problem solving. How does this apply to library searching? How can we help students search/problem solve better?

Here are a few quotes:

  • the rough estimate from our available data is obvious: users change search strategy only 1% of the time; 99% of the time they plod along a single unwavering path. Whether the true number is 2% or 0.5%, the big-picture conclusion is the same: users have extraordinarily inadequate research skills when it comes to solving problems on the Web.It also highlights a big problem with search today: it doesn't facilitate any conceptual knowledge because it relies on quick in-out dips into websites.
  • In general, we almost never see people use advanced search. And when they do, they typically use it incorrectly -- partly because they use it so rarely that they never really learn how it works.
  • For today's Web design projects, we must design for the way the world is, not the way we wish it were. This means accepting search dominance, and trying to help users with poor research skills.

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This page is an archive of entries in the Search category from April 2011.

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