Chapter 5

Formulating the Query

Asking the right questions takes as much skill as giving the right answers.

—Robert Half

Entering the Query

In Chapter 2, we reviewed various models of information seeking, from an early focus on documents and queries through to a more nuanced understanding of search as an information journey driven by dynamic information needs. Although each model emphasizes different aspects of the search process, what they share is the principle that search begins with an information need that is articulated in some form of query. We begin this chapter therefore by examining the ways in which queries can be expressed, starting with the most ubiquitous of design elements: the search box.

The search box

One of the fundamental concepts ...

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