Information cartography: A proposed model for access to heterogeneous end-user databases.

Stephen Paling


Maps are among our best information systems. They require little documentation and are commonly used and understood. In contrast, many systems of classification seem to lack this acceptance and ease ofuse. Anecdotal evidence suggests that this is particularly true of the way collections of databases are classified for online browsing on library Web sites. This paper argues that some ofthe characteristics that make maps easily usable can be applied to collections of databases. Those characteristics include logical grouping of information, the ability to move smoothly between levels ofdata, and consistent amounts of data at different levels of representation.

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