Encyclopedia of Database Systems

2009 Edition

Time and Information Retrieval

  • Omar Alonso
  • Michael Gertz
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-0-387-39940-9_929



Traditional information retrieval (IR) is concerned with models, algorithms, and architectures for the retrieval and ranking of documents from a document collection based on their relevance to search queries. In temporal information retrieval, expressions (words or phrases) that relate to instants in time, events, time periods, or other temporal descriptions are extracted from documents and handled in a special way to rank (and optionally group) the documents returned for a search query. Thus, in temporal information retrieval, temporal expressions extracted from documents play a special role in the overall relevance and in the organization and exploration of search results along timelines.

Historical Background

Research on using time information for retrieval and browsing activities is fairly recent. From a search perspective, there is previous work on placing search results in a timeline to facilitate the exploration of information [

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Recommended Reading

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    Allen R.B. A focus-context browser for multiple timelines. In Proc. ACM/IEEE Joint Conf. on Digital Libraries, 2005, pp. 260–261.Google Scholar
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    SIMILE Timeline toolkit. Available at: http://simile.mit.edu/timeline/
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    TimeML, markup language for temporal and event expressions. Available at: http://www.timeml.org/

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Omar Alonso
  • Michael Gertz

There are no affiliations available