Welcome to the website of the High-Level Thesaurus Project (HILT). The
HILT project, which is now in phase IV, aims to research, investigate,
pilot, and develop solutions for, problems pertaining to cross-searching
multi-subject scheme information environments.
This is an archived project website.
The HILT projects are a series of research projects based at the Centre for Digital Library Research (CDLR), part of the Information Resources Directorate at the University of Strathclyde. HILT phase IV: transition to service testbed and future requirements study is currently in progress and is the follow-up to the HILT phase III: M2M pilot demonstrator study. Funded by the UK Joint Information Systems Committee and involving collaboration with EDINA at the University of Edinburgh, HILT phase IV is due to be completed in early 2009.
New: An embedding project has now been funded by JISC, with the aim of embedding actual HILT functionality within services and collections in the JISC information environment. The five-month project will work with Intute-based services, EDINA-based services and CDLR-based services to meet this aim. The project is due to be completed by the end of May 2009. HILT Phase IV's end date has been extended to May 2009 in line with this additional phase. Both projects will be reported on jointly upon completion.
HILT APIs feature on Techessence.info
More information on previous HILT phases (phases I, II, M2M feasibility study, III) can be found by following the navigation links featured in the site menu. Acknowledgement of terminologies used is also provided.
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Why is HILT important?
As it becomes increasingly difficult for users to satisfy their information needs due to the rapid expansion of the Web and its sprawling nature, it is also becoming progressively impractical for users to consult a wide range of sources to satisfy an information query. Consequently, it is of growing importance that users are able to search multiple distributed heterogeneous digital repositories simultaneously. With such a wide variety of resources available, however, the feasibility of achieving interoperability between them is gradually diminishing. Not only do services employ different technical standards, indexing practices, search facilities and algorithms, but also the basic language on which retrieval systems are founded differs widely. It is no longer sufficient for users to make decisions on whether to use keyword or phrase searching, employ Boolean operators, or try their luck with truncation, they must also now give consideration to the terminology they use.
Problems relating to disparate terminology use have been an impediment to information retrieval for many years, but the growth of Web, associated heterogeneous digital repositories, and the need for distributed cross-searching within multi-scheme information environments has recently drawn the issue into sharp focus. The HILT project, which is now in phase IV, aims to research, investigate and develop pilot solutions for problems pertaining to cross-searching multi-subject scheme information environments, as well as providing a variety of other terminological searching aids.