Pheromonic representation of user quests by digital structures

Endre Boros, Paul B. Kantor, Dave J. Neu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


In a novel approach to information finding in networked environments, each user's specific purpose or "quest" can be represented in numerous ways. The most familiar is a list of keywords, or a natural language sentence or paragraph. More effective is an extended text that has been judged as to relevance. This forms the basis of relevance feedback, as it is used in information retrieval. In the "Ant World" project (Ant World, 1999; Kantor et al., 1999b; Kantor et al., 1999a), the items to be retrieved are not documents, but rather quests, represented by entire collections of judged documents. In order to save space and time we have developed methods for representing these complex entities in a short string of about 1,000 bytes, which we call a "Digital Information Pheromone" (DIP). The principles for determining the DIP for a given quest, and for matching DIPs to each other are presented. The effectiveness of this scheme is explored with some applications to the large judged collections of TREC documents.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)633-639
Number of pages7
JournalProceedings of the ASIS Annual Meeting
StatePublished - 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Library and Information Sciences


Dive into the research topics of 'Pheromonic representation of user quests by digital structures'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this