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My Favorite Links
2007 Meeting of the Classification Society of North America (CSNA) -- Exploring ways of extracting useful information from large and complex machine-readable data sets, including machine learning, pattern recognition, or data mining problems, or with reference to the application area such as information retrieval, molecular bioinformatics, authorship attribution, market segmentation, psychometrics, social networks, and so on.Greenstone question/answer archives
Order of Ecumenical Franciscans
Events of AWARE Presents
Karen e. Medina's Homepage
Old Teaching Stuff > My Other Web Stuff > Current Research Interests > Old Projects > History of Information Retrieval > My Resume >
Ready Reference SectionACM submission instructions
Famous Problems and Proofs
local cinema times
Boardman's Art Theatre
Find Something to Do in Champaign-Urbana Illinois
SDD : TDWG Working Group (Taxonomic Databases Working Group). Structure of Descriptive Data (SDD). If you are interested in Biology, XML, and life in general, this will interest you. The group is interested in interoperability and standardizing biological data.
Parker, Linda, and Aunt Karen in Chicago.
My Nottingham website (University of Nottingham).
My ISRL website (Information Science Research Laboratory at the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Other (Peace Corps) photos :
OpenKey Design Discussion
TeleNature: citizen scientists, research, information sharing, wireless technology, nature.
"Software is often not what users want, but something they buy and try to use anyway." - Charles T. Meadow, 1989
"A painting is not thought out and settled in advance," said Picasso. "While it is being done, it changes as one's thoughts change. And when it's finished, it goes on changing, according to the state of mind of whoever is looking at it." -- PBS
"Libraries are a haven where people should be able to seek whatever information they want to pursue without any threat of government intervention" - Joan Airoldi
Who is Karen?
I am a graduate student in Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I am interested in Digital Libraries. Now that we have so much of our information in digital format,
see also my isrl webpage.Current Research Interests: Representation of Digital Documents (dissertation topic)
Representation of Digital Documents
For instance, the recorded stories of the Holocaust survivors should never be lost. Yet this is a real possibility if we store the information in digital formats that become obsolete in a few years. Vital to the retrieval and preservation of, and therefore access to, digital resources is the representation of these documents. Without proper representation we cannot locate, retrieve, or preserve information being produced today.
Areas of Interest Prior to This
The following is a reporting of an evolution of interests.Spring 2002
A System to Aid Users to in Making Relevance Judgements
Brief summary: Information Retrieval systems have achieved somewhat of a plateau in producing good precision and recall for the users. While there is still room for advances, there tends to be a dramatic increase in costs for diminishing returns. One method for improving systems cheaply is to collect relevance judgements made by the system users. In the retrieval community, there is also a trend to move away from binary relevance judgements: while "relevant" and "not relevant" have been helpful categories in the development of information retrieval systems, these categories are not absolute, nor are they sufficient. Collecting real relevance judgements from users may be the best way to improve Information Retrieval systems.
There are two ways of collecting user relevance judgements: collection of implicit judgements, and collection of explicit judgements. A system that would let a user create categories of relevance may be better than the implied user relevance judgements now being used by some systems. Currently, implicit judgements are measured through interpreted actions such as how much time the user spent with the document open, or whether the user printed or saved the document, etc. While there is some merit to these implied rankings, they are used as measurements of relevance mostly because they are easier to collect than explicit ratings. However, if a system were to be created where explicit ranking were easy to collect without burdening the user, then explicit rankings would be better measurements of relevance than implicit rankings.The idea is to build systems which support actions that the user does naturally, which greatly benefit the user immediately, and that would also serve as feedback mechanisms about explicit relevance judgements. The normal part of information gathering that is missing from current systems is support for side-by-side comparisons, or better yet side-by-n-side comparisons. I propose a system which allows users to create their own system of sorting things out.
My proposed system would allow the users to do digitally what they naturally do in the physical world. In a physical library setting, people collect a large number of possibilities, bring them all to a table, and critically examine each item several times. Comparing and creating multiple stacks is a normal part of the information seeking. The criteria of the stack varies widely over a very short period of time. The final selection of just a few items from a vast heap is best done with multiple piles. These multiple piles must be all visible at the same time, and the top items work as glanceable reminders to the searcher. This ability to constantly reform criteria and ranking actually aids in the user's understanding of the topic. Allow the human users do relevance judgements for their current task, and the systems can collect the judgements to use to improve system.
Another reason this system might be helpful is that people tend to select items which presents several sides of the story rather than a repeat of the same information. This type of selecting would be extremely difficult to program a computer to do while humans do this very well. So enable the humans to do what humans do well, and collect the information.Fall 2002
Information Seeking in Context
Information Sharing, Data Sharing - Botanists and Citizen Scientists
Brief Summary: Continuing with my interest in Information Seeking in Context, I became interested in how botanists share information and data in their everyday jobs and how citizen botanists seek out the same information. There are two very good reasons for studying these groups of people. 1) citizen scientists have long been involved in collecting botanical information and 2) botany in general has been slow on the adoption of computer-dependent activities. Citizen scientists were some of the first botanists. Much of the classic works in botany were written by men and women who were not specifically paid for their botanical research. Today, citizen scientists still play a role in botanical data collection. These citizen scientists are very dedicated to their data collection activities, but rarely actively consult the manuals written to aid them in their identification of the species. Bryan Heidorn is looking in to the information technologies that could help in the correct identification of plant species. During my work with him, I discovered similarities and differences between information seeking activities of the two groups. With regards to my second point above (that botany in general has been slow in the adoption of computer dependent activities), a large number of botanists are now putting their information on the Internet and sharing large portions of their data with other botanists. This sharing of data is exciting. The data-sharing that I observed between botanists is very interesting because each botanist seems to have their own way of collecting and storing data. There is a strong interest in creating a standard for data sharing, yet a reluctance to rely on computers as a technology - especially for field botanists. There is a third reason that botanists are very interesting. Botanists are experts at classification and I see very strong similarities between botanists and librarians especially in their management of information in physical formats.Fall 2003
Uncertainty and Information Seeking, Personal Information Systems
Somewhat Important Stuff:
Major Events in the History of Information Retrieval
Information Needs in Computer Science (for Science Reference class)
A Research Review of five Online Public Access Catalog User Studies - Karen Medina
A building program (example) - by Fred Schlipf for LIS428, not made for html.
Classes that I have taken and When and links to leep pagesLIS590I Indexing and Abstracting Fall 2004 LIS590I class list