Theme :The Great Debate: "This House believes that the traditional thesaurus has no place in modern information retrieval", preceded by ISKO UK AGM

Abstract 

Once upon a time, the thesaurus was venerated. It marked a breakthrough in the retrieval of very specific needles of information hidden in large haystacks. Some of the veneration rubbed off on to the trained information professionals, who alone mastered the occult art of using it to concoct effective search strategies. All this was in the time before we had a computer on every desk, when a collection of 10,000 articles was considered large, and long before the Google era. But now, who has the patience to consult a complicated thesaurus? Only a dedicated few. Has the thesaurus passed its sell-by date? And even its use-by date? Join us at the Great Debate, where you'€™ll get a chance to air your own views, and perhaps win over some voters. Can you point to the way ahead - whether it involves effective thesaurus use behind the scenes, or bypasses all vocabulary aids on the route to retrieval success? Leading the assault on thesauri will be consultants Judi Vernau and Helen Lippell, both of them experienced in user expectations and technology-driven opportunities. Defending the thesaurus fortifications, Vanda Broughton of University College London and Leonard Will of Willpower Information will man the buttresses of faceted construction techniques. As and when the audience threatens to storm the barricades, the job of maintaining order will fall to Martin White, our Chairman for the afternoon. At 13.00 hrs on the same day ISKO UK will be holding its AGM, at which non-members are welcome as observers, while members are urged to come and help us make the right decisions for 2015. After the AGM at 13.00 on 19th February, registration for the Debate opens at 13.30 and the main proceedings will start at 14.00 hrs. Please book by 15th February at latest. Full details are on the ISKO UK site . The event is free to ISKO members and to full-time students. The fee for non-members is just £40. All fees must be paid in advance - there is no provision for payment on arrival. Please pass this invitation on to any colleagues who may be interested.

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