Document (#3909)

Author
Frohmann, B.
Title
Rules of indexing : a critique of mentalism in information retrieval theory
Source
Journal of documentation. 46(1990) no.2, S.81-101
Year
1990
Abstract
A rule-governed derivation of an indexing phrase from the text of a document is, in Wittgenstein's sense, a practice, rather than a mental operation explained by reference to internally represented and tacitly known rules. Some mentalistic proposals for theory in information retrieval are criticised in light of Wittgenstein's remarks on following a rule. The conception of rules as practices shifts the theoretical significance of the social role of retrieval practices from the margins to the centre of enquiry into foundations of information retrieval. The abstracted notion of a cognitive act of 'information processing' deflects attention from fruitful directiond of research

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