The Online Search
The first stage; in conducting a search is to develop a clear specification of the information required by the end-user. The search may he conducted by the end-user alone or by the end-user and the Intermediary in cooperation and consultation. Sometimes, it may not be possible to specify exactly wham information is sought by the end-user before performing the search. However it is possible to strive for as precise a specification as the user can achieve on the basis of present knowledge. The specification may include a preliminary attempt to express the search in the indexing language of the database to be searched, and to frame a search strategy:
The second stage will be the selection of the database or databases and selection of appropriate service vendors. After these preliminary planning stages are over, the searcher connects to the chosen search service and may view any information on the screen. Once the database or range of databases is selected, the search proceeds according to a series of parameters introduced by the user and the system responds by indicating the number of records that match the search criteria. Thereafter, the user may opt to display the details of these records. If the search is for a specific item of information or document this may be read online. Usually the user will assess the relevance of the records on the basis of abstracts, and then performs other operations such as downloading or print records or view full text. It may be mentioned that a number of issues need to be considered in managing online search service. The future developments will be in the areas of designing suitable interfaces, telecommunications, pricing and strategic alliances, between online services and organizations connected with document delivery service.