3.2 User tasks

Find To search on any relevant criteria in order to bring together information about one or more resources of interest

Identify To clearly understand the nature of the resources found and to distinguish between similar resources

Select To determine the suitability of the resources found and to choose (by accepting or by rejecting) specific resources

Obtain To access the content of the resource

Explore To use the relationships between one resource and another to place them in a context

(p. 9-10)


6 thoughts on “3.2 User tasks

  1. Pingback: World-wide review of the FRBR-Library Reference Model, a consolidation of the FRBR, FRAD and FRSAD conceptual models | FRBR Open Comments

  2. Here’s how the find task is described: “The find task is about searching. The user’s goal is to bring together one or more things (entities) as the result of a search.” (p. 10) That describes the goal of finding, but does not give any indication of What or How. Finding is actually quite complex, and whether it “collocates” (brings together) results or presents them in some other way (e.g. ranking) is actually a separate step and should be treated separately. Instead, what we need here is a definition of “find.”

    Find in the book or card catalog was based on looking for headings in a linear, alphabetical order. The “search”, in those technologies, was co-existent with the collocation of similar items. (Similar, at least, in terms of the headings used to describe them.) Finding in an online catalog takes an entirely different approach, generally in the form of a search using character strings. There is nothing in the FRBR model that indicates how the act of finding is addressed by the entities, attributes, and relationships. Is keyword searching assumed? Left-anchored strings on headings? Are there facets? The answer may be “all of the above” but in any case data elements must be designed to making “find” possible. Instead, they are presented without any relationship between them.


  3. Here’s my thought on the user tasks: I’m not quite happy with the use of “resource” in the user tasks of LRM in contrast to the earlier models, which used the much broader term “entity”. I think there is a danger that this might be misunderstood, although they state in the draft “the term ‘resource’ is used very broadly to stand for any of the entities defined in the model, as well as actual library resources” (p. 11).


  4. User tasks: these still remain fairly unclear and confusing. This is partly due to strange naming conventions and partly due to the complete lack of some kind of requirements analysis.
    “User tasks” – to most people this means “activities that users (who are they?) HAVE to do”. This is immediately off-putting. Why not use a more neutral term, user actions, user objectives, or some such?


    • Even if no formal requirements analysis is done, it would at least be good to know what requirements were assumed.

      Also, I see the user tasks as a list of what you can do in the catalog, not what you want to do. They define the limits, not the possibilities.


  5. Confusing: “Find” – to normal people this means something completely different than described here. “Finding” is the result of the full search process. Here in FRBR “find” is described as “search”. Then call it “search” I say. And analyse it. Search can take a lot of forms, not only with “relevant criteria”, but also by just entering some keywords, or “exploring”, etc. “Identify”, “select”, “find” can all be part of the same process, as the authors rightly remark. Also the descriptions of these tasks puzzle me: “clearly understand the nature of the resources found” (identify), “To determine the suitability of the resources found and to choose” (select); “To use the relationships between one resource and another to place them in a context” (explore).
    “To access the content of the resource” (obtain): this seems to apply to traditional bibliographic resources only? How do you access an object in a museum?

    Having said that, I think it is good that “explore” is added, however opaquely the meaning is described.


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