Interesting article on metadata driven search and browse on an intranet

Metadata based search and browse functionality on the NSW Office of Fair Trading intranet: a Case Study

interesting notes from the case study

An authority list is a list of the terms that can be used to populate a given metadata element

The simple search executes a search across the ’subject’, ‘title’ and ‘description’ metadata fields as well as the text of HTML pages and attachments. If the search term has a synonymous term within the corporate thesaurus then this term will also be searched.

Monitoring user searching and browsing success
Search reports are generated daily and cumulated on a monthly basis. These reports show the number of searches performed, the most popular search terms, search terms which resulted in success and those which resulted in failure. To date we only have reliable data for the last three months and are still looking at how to interpret these reports and how we can use them to develop intranet content and improve search functions.

interesting notes from the conclusion

Assigning metadata centrally, rather than decentralising the process, was the correct decision. It became obvious to us that two people assigning metadata frequently results in higher quality metadata than many people assigning metadata infrequently. The usefulness of the search and browsing functions depends totally on good metadata content, so no matter how good our standards and tools are, without proficient metadata assigners the project would have failed.

interesting notes from external resources

The guiding principle for using qualifiers with AGLS elements, colloquially known
as the ?dumb-down rule?, is that a client (eg a person or software) should be able to
ignore any qualifier and use the description (element content) as if it were
unqualified. The remaining element value without the qualifier should continue to
be generally correct and useful for discovery and other management purposes.