Modern Information Retrieval


Information retrieval (IR) has changed considerably in the last years with the expansion of the Web (World Wide Web) and the advent of modern and inexpensive graphical user interfaces and mass storage devices. As a result, traditional IR textbooks have become quite out-of-date which has led to the introduction of new IR books recently. Nevertheless, we believe that there is still great need of a book that approaches the field in a rigorous and complete way from a computer-science perspective (in opposition to a user-centered perspective).

This book is an effort to partially fulfill this gap and should be useful for a first course on information retrieval as well as for a graduate course on the topic.

The book is composed of two portions which complement and balance each other. The core portion includes 9 chapters authored or coauthored by the designers of the book. The second portion, which is fully integrated with the first, is formed by 6 state-of-the-art chapters written by leading researchers in their fields.

A same notation and glossary are employed in all the chapters. Thus, despite the fact that several people contributed to the text, this book is really much more a textbook than an edited collection of chapters written by separate authors. Further, contrary to a collection of chapters, the contents and organization of this book have been carefully designed by the main authors to present a cohesive view of all the important aspects of modern information retrieval.

From IR models to indexing text, from IR visual tools and interfaces to the Web, from IR multimedia to digital libraries, the book provides both broadness of coverage and richness of details. It is our hope that, given the now clear relevance and significance of information retrieval to modern society, the book will contribute to further disseminate the study of the discipline at information science, computer science, and library science departments throughout the world.

Ricardo Baeza-Yates
Santiago, Chile
Berthier Ribeiro-Neto
Belo Horizonte, Brazil

January 1999