BIOSIS Introduces New Relational Indexing Scheme and Additional Information in 1998

Article excerpt

BIOSIS has announced changes to its indexing methodology and product formats to be introduced this year. A new indexing scheme has been designed to improve natural language retrieval, supported by a growing knowledge base of life science information. It results in a continuing dynamic system capable of growing with evolving life science terminology, according to the company.

This knowledge base (which includes organism names, geopolitical locations, diseases, chemicals and biochemicals, and major concepts) provides consistency of indexing and context of terms, allowing users more specific retrieval. The new indexing method, called relational indexing, will contain changes designed to make searching easier and the retrieval of records more accurate in both electronic and print formats.

BIOSIS' is also introducing new information to its databases, including CAS Registry Numbers and the MeSH (Medical Subject Headings) terminology for human diseases from the National Library of Medicine. The added terms will help facilitate cross-file searches. In addition, authority tales, which list related terms and phrases (including scope and history notes), will be provided so that users can easily broaden or narrow a search.

BIOSIS' new relational indexing will debut in the 1998 editions of the following electronic products: Biological Abstracts on CD and Biological Abstracts/RRM (Reports, Reviews, Meetings) on CD; BIOSIS Previews online and on compact disc; Foods Intelligence on CD; BIOSIS Gen-Ref on CD; TOXLINE; TOXLINE Plus; BasicBIOSIS; and BioBusiness. BIOSIS will also produce selected backfires reissued in the same format as 1998 data. BIOSIS' new indexing method has also facilitated changes to the organization of its print reference publications--Biological Abstracts, Biological Abstracts/RRM, Abstracts of Entomology, and Abstracts of Mycology.

"Over the past several years, BIOSIS has conducted numerous focus groups with users to find out how and why they use our products," said Alan Clarke, director of marketing, sales, and product development at BIOSIS. These forums indicated an increased use of BIOSIS databases among researchers and information professionals who prefer a natural-language based indexing system. …