2009 Volume 38

Search Less Find More: Redefining Search Environments to Accommodate New User Behaviors

By Chan Ping Wah, Johnson Davasagayam & Ngian Lek Choh, pp. 1-12


The National Library of Singapore (NLS) has been prototyping new ways of delivering content to its users. This is to enable easier access for users so that time-to-find is more efficient and effective. This article discusses possible models of approaching end-user needs without imposing organised search structures typically designed in library environments. Research points to the fact that serendipitous search executed through popular search engines like Google and Yahoo offer the most effective means of information discovery in an online environment. This paper focuses on how library resources can be deployed to enable easy retrieval so that users can search less and find more.

Environment Intelligence: An Innovative Information Service

By Shaheen Majid & Christopher Khoo, pp. 13-26


Libraries are continually developing innovative and creative services to keep pace with the fast-changing society. ICT developments, particularly those providing easy access to information on the Web, have considerably increased the expectations of library users, who expect the same speed, breadth, and comprehensiveness in information services provided by libraries. To meet these challenges, libraries are coming up with specialized, innovative and value-added information services, such as the provision of environment intelligence. This paper introduces the concept of environment intelligence and its scope and discusses how environmental knowledge can be used for problem-solving, developing new initiatives, tactical and strategic planning, and organizational learning and restructuring. This paper also provides an overview of efforts made by library and information education programs in imparting new competencies to their graduates for undertaking environmental scanning and other related activities.

Reading Preferences among Different Generations: A Study of Attitudes and Choices in Singapore

By Abdus Sattar Chaudhry & Gladys Low, pp. 27-48


A survey of reading habits of a selected group of readers between the ages of 28 and 43 in Singapore indicated that they tended to adopt pragmatic and utilitarian approach towards reading. The preference for television and internet-related activities shifted them away from reading. Internet ranked the top source of information acquisition. While online sources were preferred, some readers were still willing to travel to libraries and bookstores to get the books they would like to read. The profile of book readers was likely to be female, single, having higher educational qualification, and with no children. The changing reading trends suggest that libraries need to consider a shift in focus of services offered.

Medical and Health Information Seeking among Singapore Youths: An Exploratory Study

By Intan Azura Mokhtar, Ji-En Goh, Kerrie Jiayi Li & Celine Xue-Li Tham, pp. 49-76


This study aimed to find out what were the attitudes of young people (aged 18 to 24) in Singapore towards medical or health information seeking. This study also compared the responses between male and female youths. The findings of this study seemed to suggest that youths might not actually be novices in the autonomous search of health information and instead, might be increasingly competent in this area. This could be one of the reasons why many see no need to consult doctors for minor ailments. In addition, it was observed that male youths were less likely to consult doctors for both minor and prolonged illnesses compared to female youths and that male youths were more likely to watch what they eat and less likely to read health magazines compared to female youths. Also, it was found that youths generally preferred to turn to their parents for medical or health information.

Analysis of Computer Crime in Singapore using Local English Newspapers

By Na Jin-Cheon, Wu Hao, Ji Yong, Tay Mia Hao & Ramanathan Mani Kandan, pp. 77-102


The purpose of this study was to collect and analyze computer crime cases in Singapore over a 6-year period from 2003 to 2008 and to understand the trend in computer crimes. For data collection, we constructed comprehensive query terms for searching all the computer crime cases in Singapore. All the related terms for “computer crime” were collected using two thesauri engines which were namely Inspect and Compendex. In the search phase, the two search engines, LexisNexis Academic and Factiva, were employed. The source of the articles was all English newspapers published in Singapore, such as The Straits Times, The Business Times, and Today. Based on the collected computer crime cases in Singapore, the top three computer crimes categories were hacking (32.4%), fraud (29.5%), and intellectual property theft (17.1%).

The Impact of Technostress on Organisational Commitment among Malaysian Academic Librarians

By Ungku Norulkamar Ungku Ahmad, Salmiah Mohd Amin & Wan Khairuzzaman Wan Ismail, pp. 103-123


The technological revolution has undoubtedly brought along many changes in the workplace today. Although it has allowed work to be carried out faster and more efficient, many employees are not comfortable with the implementation of technology as it involves change and uncertainty. As a result, they experience additional stress known as technostress which may have negative consequences in the organisation. This conceptual paper highlights the issues of technostress and organisational commitment, particularly in the library setting. As empirical evidence on the influence of technostress on organisational commitment is still lacking, this paper proposes the methodology for examining the impact of technostress in organisational commitment among the Malaysian academic librarians.

Precision and Relative Recall of Search Engines: A Comparative Study of Google and Yahoo

By B.T. Sampath Kumar & J.N. Prakash, pp. 124-137


This paper compared the retrieval effectiveness of the Google and Yahoo. Both precision and relative recall were considered for evaluating the effectiveness of the search engines. Queries using concepts in the field of library and information science were tested and were divided into one-word queries, simple multi-word queries and complex multi-word queries. Results of the study showed that the precision of Google was high for simple multi-word queries (0.97) and Yahoo had comparatively high precision for complex multi-word queries (0.76). Relative recall of Google was high for simple one- word queries (0.92) while Yahoo had higher relative recall for complex multi-word queries (0.61).