The Information Revolution - Myth or Reality
The early work in the design of automatic information systems, exemplified by the contributions of H. P. Luhn and others, now goes back nearly twenty years. It may be useful to ask whether a great deal has changed in these twenty years, and if so, what contributions have been most influential and indicative of future trends. Two contradictory opinions are often heard: the optimists speak of the information revolution and think of mechanized international information networks; the pessimists, on the other hand, assert that little has changed and point to the continued use for well over twenty years of substantially unchanged file organizations, indexing systems, and search techniques. An attempt is made to separate fact from fiction by describing where we have stood still, and where progress has occurred. In particular, the technological environment which has evolved in many directions is distinguished from most of the intellectual components of information retrieval which have remained unchanged. Suggestions are also made relating to the design and operations of future automatic information systems.
computer science; technical report
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