----- Original Message -----
From: "Edward C. Zimmermann" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Tuesday, November 29, 2005 10:24 AM
Subject: Re: Proximity search
> Quoting Mike Taylor <[log in to unmask]>:
>> > I don't sematically see "same element" (in the same leaf container)
>> > as proximity.
>> Hmm. I am trying to think of a polite way to say "then you are
>> mistaken", but I can't find one. :-)
> We are not here to be polite but to create good systems..
>> > Proximity is distance.. Within X characters.. Within X
>> > words.. within some metric. Same element is NOT a metric.
>> If you really want to push this point, you'll have to overturn an
>> ANSI/NISO standard going back a full decade and ratified by ISO. See
> I am, as you know, quite familar with it. It was in many ways wrong but
> reflected models of throught widespread back decades ago when we had
> of a time doing proximity with characters and words and most of us had
> little to no support of paragraph, section chapter. It might have seemed
> to make sense to go from "chapter" to an abstract "element" but it does
> not. Byte streams, characters, words, lines etc. have a concept of unit,
> distance and order.
> To be a proximity there is (and specified here too) a scalar (distance)
> and a relation.
> In a structured document such as
> <name> Edward Zimermann </name>
> <address> </address>
> <email> [log in to unmask]</email>
> <name> Nonmonotic labs </name>
Actually, I did the first draft of the proximity spec for Z39.50 and I based
it on our working production systems, in which we supported proximity
searching over both textual data and MARC data. We had "same element" as
distance=0, unit=element (although I think we used the term "field"). We
also supported sections, chapters, footnotes, captions in our e-book project
and all of the proximity oeprations over them. So, the spec was based on
real-world experience. I don't think we were the only ones doing this,
based on my recollection of the discussions we had on Z39.50 (anyone
remember AT&T (Lucent) Bob's electronic books?)