In case you haven’t been reading the InfoToday Blog , it’s been a busy week in Baltimore as SLA hits the ground running. The exhibit hall was overwhelming. There were so many vendors I wanted to have in-depth conversations with and so many presentations I wanted to hear. I always end up at the end of the conference exhausted and frustrated. How do I clone myself so that I can be in multiple places at once?
One of the stickiest problems in online search is wondering whether the author you found is the author you thought you found. In other words, is one Smith the same as another Smith? J. Smith could be Jay Smith, John Smith, James Smith, Jimmy Smith or Jimbo Smith. How to know? As Christina points out, several companies are rushing to solve this problem. Like Christina, I have the press releases to prove it.
But here’s what’s wierd. CSA has a working product. I’ve had an in-depth briefing from Scopus and they kindly gave me a password to test it out. So I know it works. Then I get a press release from Thomson Scientific (aka ISI)telling me that, they too, are coming up with an author disambiguation tool Can I test drive it? No. Can they show me screen shots? No. Can they give me any information on the underlying technology? No. So what’s the deal here, ISI?
I’m hoping to glean more information about this during SLA. If you’re interested, I’m halfway to Baltimore, since I have to change planes in Pittsburgh (where I’ve found a free wireless connection, I’m very pleased to report).