Please update your browser

You're using a version of Internet Explorer that isn't supported by Questia.
To get a better experience, go to one of these sites and get the latest
version of your preferred browser:

Directory Assistance on FirstSearch: Prospects and Potential

By Salisbury, Lutishoor; Batson, Don | Information Technology and Libraries, March 1997 | Go to article overview

Directory Assistance on FirstSearch: Prospects and Potential


Salisbury, Lutishoor, Batson, Don, Information Technology and Libraries


This paper highlights the advantages in using the Pro CD database on FirstSearch. It also identifies some weaknessesfor business use and the constraints caused by the system. We provide guidelines and searching tips that will aid in maximum retrieval, usefulness of results, and cost-effectiveness.

There are a number of electronic phone directories on the market, giving buyers an opportunity to choose products that closely match their specific information needs and searching abilities.[1] Most of these products, however, are CD-ROM-based and are not accessible from remote locations or through World Wide Web access for end-user searching. Select Phone was among the first of such products to emerge on FirstSearch, providing full end-user searching capability at an affordable price.

FirstSearch is OCLC's online reference system designed for end-user searching. It provides access to more than fifty databases in numerous subject areas. Because of its flexibility, FirstSearch offers all of the advantages of CD-ROM systems and locally mounted databases with no complicated installation, maintenance, and updating procedures.

Pro CD, previously called Select Phone, was introduced on FirstSearch in 1995. In the spring of 1996, the Pro CD database was split into two new databases on FirstSearch: Pro CD Biz and Pro CD Home.

Pro CD Biz contains approximately fifteen million records of white page listings of businesses mainly from printed phone directories in the United States and is updated quarterly. Pro CD Home contains approximately eighty million records of residential white page listings and is updated semiannually. Both databases are compiled from U.S. telephone directories.[2]

The business database offers the following access points for finding businesses: business and personal names (for select businesses that may use residential phones for business purposes), city, state, zip code, area code, telephone number, and Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) codes or SIC subject headings. In addition it provides keyword searching and general subject searching in business names and city.

The residential database is searchable by business and personal name (for select businesses that may use residential phones for business purposes), city, state, zip code, area code, and telephone number. In addition, it provides liceyword searching and general subject searching in business names and city.

These databases, housed on the FirstSearch system, are intended for end-user searching. However, it is our experience that there is a need to introduce users to the basics of records and fields and to field searching capabilities using Boolean and proximity operators in searching. Such databases also require training to gain maximum benefits in retrieval and to cut costs, especially when using the per-search pricing option on the FirstSearch system.

This study will attempt to highlight the advantages in using Pro CD on FirstSearch. It will also identify weaknesses in applying the system for business use. In addition, it will provide guidelines and searching tips that will aid in maximum retrieval, usefulness of results, and cost-effectiveness.

Advantages in Using Electronic Telephone Directories

Several advantages to using telephone directories in electronic format have been identified in the literature. These include the provision of many access points, ease of use, search and retrieval capability, and the ability to search over wide geographic areas and to manipulate the information found. Quinley,[3] Foss,[4] Tafel,[5] Boettcher and Kingman,[6] and Ernest, Beam and Monath,[7] have identified other reasons for using electronic telephone directories. Among these are: ease in finding specific telephone numbers, business addresses, or residential addresses; ease in acquiring information on local hotels, motels, restaurants, dentists, doctors, universities, and car rental agencies; utility in finding an individual business or information for sales prospecting or market research; assistance in locating businesses in a particular area for identifying best prices, best services, and so on; and use as a crisscross directory.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Directory Assistance on FirstSearch: Prospects and Potential
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.