Princeton University
Computer Science Dept.

Computer Science 598b
Advanced Topics in Computer Science

Information Access: Issues for the Web & Digital Libraries

Andrea LaPaugh

Spring 1998

Schedule and Readings | Papers of Interest

General Information

Meeting time: Tues, Thurs 1:30--2:50 PM
Meeting place: Room 302 CS building.
First meeting: Tuesday, February 3, 1998.

Professor: Andrea LaPaugh, 304 CS Building, 258-4568,, Office hours by appointment. Please send email.

Course secretary: Sandra Barbu, 323 CS building, 258-4562,

Course Description

In 1990, the World Wide Web was born. In seven years, it has become a pervasive part of our society. (One needs no more evidence than that every television advertisement gives a Web site.) During the 1990's the acquisition of digital material by libraries has also expanded greatly. Both the Web and large digital library collections present similar problems in the management and retrieval of information. The Web is particularly a problem because anyone and everyone can put (good and bad) information on the Web. How do the providers of search and data organization services give useful access to information? Some of the questions are sociological; many are technical. Researchers in the computer science community and related communities have very active programs exploring solutions to these problems. In 1994 NSF, DARPA, and NASA jointly funded six major research projects under the NSF/DARPA/NASA Digital Libraries Initiative. Many other research efforts exist as well. The Sixth International World Wide Web Conference was held in the spring of 1997, presenting technical papers on information access as well as other technical issues of the Web; the 1997 IEEE International Forum on Research and Technology Advances in Digital Libraries ( ADL '97 ) was also held in the spring of 1997; the Second ACM International Conference on Digital Libraries was held in the summer of 1997. These conferences are representative of the technical work being done in this area.

This graduate seminar will study current research on information access for large digital collections. We will read a selection of papers reporting results of recent research. We will develop necessary background as we study individual topics. Our core topics will be data organization and algorithms for getting useful information from digital collections of textual data. Examples of other potential topics include audio and video retrieval, architectures to enhance Web retrieval, new scholarship through digital access, and extracting information from the link structure of a set of documents. Students will participate in the development of the reading list. Each students will present and lead the discussion of several papers. Students will also develop projects related to the seminar themes as a major component of the course. Details of project development will be discussed at the first meeting.

Course Requirements for Credit


The seminar is intended for graduate students and advanced undergraduates. Graduate students in areas other than computer science or computer engineering and all undergraduates who wish to take this seminar should contact Professor LaPaugh to discuss their background.

Schedule and Readings

On Reserve at Engineering Library

WWW Resources

A.S. LaPaugh Wed Apr 29 14:27:27 EDT 1998