iaslash A-Z Indexes for Web Sites: Usage and Implementation

iaslash A-Z Indexes for Web Sites: Usage and Implementation. IASlash asks why IA’s don’t implement more A-Z indexes, and the answer seems to be that it is a specialized skill, and we’re not used to it.

Maybe the answer is really much simpler. A-Z indexes are particularly effective for known item searching (when you know what you’re looking for and what it’s called). But there is a technology that is much cheaper to implement and also very effective for known-item searching. It’s called a search engine.

For an example of an A-Z index on the web, check the BBC A-Z index. Notice the value it ads by having human editors choose terms (like “Accidents”) and grouping BBC sites and pages underneath those (like “First Aid”). This way they help users with the paraphrase problem. It’s definite added value, but similar added value can be used in a search engine by proposing additional search terms to users and using best bets.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s