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Developing mathematical theories of the physical world: Open Access research on fluid dynamics from Strathclyde

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Contextual factors affecting the utility of surrogates within exploratory search

Ruthven, Ian and Baillie, Mark and Azzopardi, Leif and Bierig, Ralf and Nicol, Emma and Sweeney, Simon and Yakici, Murat (2008) Contextual factors affecting the utility of surrogates within exploratory search. Information Processing and Management, 44 (2). pp. 437-462.

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In this paper we investigate how information surrogates might be useful in exploratory search and what information it is useful for a surrogate to contain. By comparing assessments based on artificially created information surrogates, we investigate the effect of the source of information, the quality of an information source and the date of information upon the assessment process. We also investigate how varying levels of topical knowledge, assessor confidence and prior expectation affect the assessment of information surrogates. We show that both types of contextual information affect how the information surrogates are judged and what actions are performed as a result of the surrogates