From Resource Discovery to Knowledge Discovery on the Internet
O. Zaïane. Technical Report, TR 1998-13. Simon Fraser University, (1998)
More than 50 years ago, at a time when modern computers didn't exist yet, Vannevar Bush wrote about a multimedia digital library containing human collective knowledge and filled with "trails" linking materials of the same topic. At the end of World War II, Vannevar urged scientists to build such a knowledge store and make it useful, continuously extendable and more importantly, accessible for consultation. Today, the closest to the materialization of Vannevar's dream is the World-Wide Web hypertext and multimedia document collection. However, the ease of use and accessibility of the knowledge described by Vannevar is yet to be realized. Since the 60s, extensive research has been accomplished in the information retrieval field, and free-text search was finally adopted by many text repository systems in the late 80s. The advent of the World-Wide Web in the 90s helped text search become routine as millions of users use search engines daily to pinpoint resources on the Internet. However, resource discovery on the internet is still frustrating and sometimes even useless when simple keyword searches can convey hundereds of thousands of documents as results. Knowledge discovery and Data Mining from the Web is a new promising research topic that is attracting tremendous interest. Is this what will help realize Vannevar's dream?