Towards next generation vertical search engines

Li Zheng, Florida International University


As the Web evolves unexpectedly fast, information grows explosively. Useful resources become more and more difficult to find because of their dynamic and unstructured characteristics. A vertical search engine is designed and implemented towards a specific domain. Instead of processing the giant volume of miscellaneous information distributed in the Web, a vertical search engine targets at identifying relevant information in specific domains or topics and eventually provides users with up-to-date information, highly focused insights and actionable knowledge representation. As the mobile device gets more popular, the nature of the search is changing. So, acquiring information on a mobile device poses unique requirements on traditional search engines, which will potentially change every feature they used to have. To summarize, users are strongly expecting search engines that can satisfy their individual information needs, adapt their current situation, and present highly personalized search results. In my research, the next generation vertical search engine means to utilize and enrich existing domain information to close the loop of vertical search engine's system that mutually facilitate knowledge discovering, actionable information extraction, and user interests modeling and recommendation. I investigate three problems in which domain taxonomy plays an important role, including taxonomy generation using a vertical search engine, actionable information extraction based on domain taxonomy, and the use of ensemble taxonomy to catch user's interests. As the fundamental theory, ultra-metric, dendrogram, and hierarchical clustering are intensively discussed. Methods on taxonomy generation using my research on hierarchical clustering are developed. The related vertical search engine techniques are practically used in Disaster Management Domain. Especially, three disaster information management systems are developed and represented as real use cases of my research work.

Subject Area

Computer science

Recommended Citation

Zheng, Li, "Towards next generation vertical search engines" (2014). ProQuest ETD Collection for FIU. AAI3644819.