9. Full text remote search for law - DIAL Search
DIAL Search is the only implementation as yet of the targeted web spider. About
350 MB of targeted sites have been indexed, providing searches over about
50,000 pages. Targeting has been limited, due to the nature of project DIAL, to
legislation and legislation-related sites, and to indexes of law on the web.
The DIAL Search component uses the SINO search engine to search over all of the
world-wide legislation which is able to be indexed by the targeted web spider.
From the DIAL Search interface shown below, searches may be entered using
boolean and proximity operators and truncation.
The DIAL Search interface, with `Boolean (Ranked Results)'
Two types of search/display options are provided:
At a later
stage of development, when we are able to provide useful database and library
headings within DIAL Search, more search and display options will be provided,
to allow searches to be limited by the type of library into which the material
has been categorised (`Legislation', `Law reform', `Case law' etc), or limited
by the domain of the desired country, and for search results to be displayed
grouped by database of origin rather than by relevance ranking (as is currently
available on AustLII).
- Advanced Search - This is the most powerful form of searching,
where searches can be made using boolean and proximity connectors, and the
results are then also ranked in likely order of relevance. This allows
reasonably broad searches (to aid completeness) with the relevance ranking then
providing more precision. This display option is illustrated below. (This is
AustLII's Boolean (Ranked Results) search method.)
- Simple Search - Users can enter text in any form (eg `I want laws
on tax and bankruptcy' or `tax taxation bankrupt bankruptcy') without knowing
about search connectors, truncation etc. Results are ranked according to likely
relevance. The user will obtain a useful list of search results, although often
not as complete as a boolean search can provide. This is the search method
recommended for inexperienced users, and is the default option. (This is
AustLII's Freeform (Ranked Results) search method.)
DIAL Search - Display of search results
Results are displayed as shown below. Items are ranked in order of likely
relevance. The user is give the option to repeat the search over a number of
Further work on the display of results may result in the name of the database
from which each entry comes being displayed with it, so it is easier to
recognise which counties particular legislative items are from.
One particularly effective use of DIAL Search is to use it to find starting
points for research concerning the laws of a named country. Because the
relevance ranking tends to give short documents and documents that use a search
term in a title, many of the internet law indexes that have a separate page for
that country will appear near the top of the list, so the user can they quickly
review existing intellectual law indexes for that country. Selecting `Repeat
this search over DIAL links' will find the entries concerning the country in