19.596 digital visibility

From: Humanist Discussion Group (by way of David Gants) <dgants_at_ROGERS.COM>
Date: Wed, 8 Feb 2006 22:01:06 -0400

              Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 19, No. 596.
      Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
                    Submit to: humanist_at_princeton.edu

        Date: Wed, 08 Feb 2006 21:29:25 -0400
        Subject: digital visibility

Dear Humanists,

The following query is a result of our research on the LAIRAH project,
(http://www.ucl.ac.uk/slais/LAIRAH/) as part of which we are doing a
study on how humanities scholars find digital resources on the web. We
have found that resources may be more or less difficult to find, but the
question of how to define a resource that is hard to find as opposed to
easy to find is not immediately evident.

We know of course of research by Nielson and the general agreement that
information should be no more that three clicks away from arriving at a
website. However, we are finding it relatively difficult to find
academic literature on the subject of how hard a resource has to be to
find to effectively render it invisible. When will a user generally give
up browsing a site, such as a university library or departmental
website, and conclude nothing is to be found? We would like to know if
anyone has performed user tests to determine when users give up, and
therefore how to define when a resource is hard to find. If any
humanists can point us towards studies that have looked at this area we
would be very grateful.

Thanks in advance,

Claire Warwick, Melissa Terras and the LAIRAH team.

Claire Warwick MA, PhD
Programme Director and Lecturer
Electronic Communication and Publishing
School of Library, Archive and Information Studies
University College London
Gower Street, London WC1E 6BT
phone: 020 7679 2548, email: c.warwick_at_ucl.ac.uk
website: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/slais/claire-warwick/
Received on Wed Feb 08 2006 - 21:12:47 EST

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