Community Search Assistant

Natalie S. Glance

This paper describes a new software agent, the community search assistant, which recommends related searches to users of search engines. The community search assistant enables communities of users to search in a collaborative fashion. All queries submitted by the community are stored in the form of a graph. Links are made between queries that are found to be related. Users can peruse the network of related queries in an ordered way: following a path from a first cousin, to a second cousin to a third cousin, etc. to a set of search results. The first key idea behind the use of query graphs is that the determination of relatedness depends on the documents returned by the queries, not on the actual terms in the queries themselves. The second key idea is that the construction of the query graph transforms single user usage of information networks (e.g. search) into collaborative usage: all users can tap into the knowledge base of queries submitted by others.

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