Web Queries: Methods and Tools
Jan. 27, 2004
Due Feb. 3
Description of a Web Query Tool
In this first homework, you are asked to describe a tool that you would like to use when querying the web. Don't worry about who is to build the tool. It would be really interesting (isn't it interesting to propose something new?:-)) if, to the best of your knowledge, such a tool does not exist yet, or at least is not available exactly as you like. So this description should be like a proposal.
Three important parts of a proposal are "why", "what", and "how".
"Why" is the motivation for the tool you propose. You may explain the tool in very high-level terms and say why it is useful, why it is interesting, and how different it is from related systems that you know are available.
Then, more precisely, describe "what" the tool does. Say clearly what the tool takes as input and produces as output. If it is interactive, explain the interactions clearly. You may use examples to help clarify things.
Finally, "how" is to support the feasibility of building the tool. Describe as much as you can, and for the parts that you don't know how to do, just say so and mention potential problems, such as bad performance. The "why" and "what" are the main requirements for this homework.
Your description should be as clear and complete as you can possibly write in about 1 or 2 pages (depending on the density of your printout). You may and should cite references to support your description.
Before class on the due date, send me an email in plain text containing three lines of the following forms
<a href="url-of-your-description">Name of the Web Query Tool You Describe</a> <a href="url-of-your-homepage">Your Name</a> your-email-address (this line will not be posted but the first two lines will)and hand in a printout of your description in class.
This homework is worth about 3% of the course grade. Exceptionally well thought-out and well written homeworks will receive appropriate extra credit.