Patrick Durusau,


The listing below contains new books or articles that I have found of interest as well as older gems that I have discovered while researching a variety of subjects. Only brief comments are included here, but occassionally I will post more extensive comments on a particular work and those will be linked to from this listing.

  • Proceedings of the International Conference on Scientific Information, 1958

    Yes, note the date, 1958. I saw a reference to a paper in this two volume work and ordered a used copy. Fascinating to read because it was written prior to finding all the "standard" answers for searching and indexing texts. If you are looking for texts that don't repeat the current matras, this work and similar items would be a good place to start.

  • Sorting Things Out: Classification and Its Consequences by Geoffrey C. Bowker and Susan Leigh Star, MIT Press, ISBN 0-262-52295-0, 2000

    A very good book for anyone to read who is thinking about writing topic maps or any other type of information structure. How we classify information in those structures does have consequences, some intended, some perhaps (hopefully) less so. Despite the serious subject this book was quite fun to read.

  • Selling Blue Elephants, by Howard Moskowitz and Alex Gofman, Wharton School Publishing, ISBN-10 0-13-613668-0, 2007.

    If you have ever wondered why the local grocery store has so many different types of pickle's and pasta sauce, this is the book for you. It is a very amusing introduction to a very serious research technique known as Rule Developing Experimentation (RDE).

    I became interested in this work because I think it is pretty apparent that we are hitting a search wall in terms of returning useful results to users. Sure, there are minor improvements still to be made, but when was the last time your search results really satisfied your request? Or perhaps I should say you as a user, since for any single request there are as many satisfying results as there are users to make the request. Yes, yes, I am suggesting that the answer you might find satisfactory might not have the same affect on me. But the only way to investigate that possibility is to learn how others have discovered what consumers want.

  • Eats, Shoots & Leaves, by Lynne Truss, Gotham Books, ISBN 1-592-40087-6, 2003.

    If you like entertaining books about common errors in punctuation, this is the book for you! Well, what did you expect from someone who is editing several technical standards? It is very entertaining and worth reading and re-reading.