Information Retrieval: A Health and Biomedical Perspective, Third Edition

William Hersh, M.D.

Book Errata

Page 13: The first sentence is section 1.3.3 is missing the word "as," i.e., "such as whether to order a test."

Page 27: The last sentence in section 1.6.1 appears twice.

Page 32: In the last sentence of the last full paragraph, "fewer intervals than documents" should be "fewer documents than intervals."

Page 50: In Figure 2.2, the number 1.5 in the parentheses (three instances) should be 15.

Page 54: In section, the example for retrieving pages from Google that link to a domain while excluding links from the domain itself is given as +link:<domain> -url:<domain>. However, the syntax has changed, with the url modifier being replaced by site, i.e., +link:<domain> -site:<domain>. For example, the query retrieves all pages that point to but are not on the site (including some that are redirected from, which is to where the URL redirects). For more information, see

Page 61: After the bulleted list, IJCME should be ICMJE.

Page 97: "Unrecognized need - clinician aware of information need or knowledge deficit" should be "Unrecognized need - clinician not aware of information need or knowledge deficit".

Page 135: In the discussion of PubMed Central, it is stated that NIH policy "encourages" grantees to deposit their articles about research funded by NIH to be deposited into PubMed Central. As correctly noted on page 254, this is now a requirement per NIH policy.

Page 140: In section 3.3.4, the model of Haynes is the 4S model, not the 4-H model.

Page.148: In section 3.4.4, in the third sentence, the word “prominent” should be “prominence."

Page 178: In Figure 4.4, DC.subject, the word "informatics" is misspelled (!).

Page 202: The Venn diagram of the NOT operator in figure 5.1 is incorrect. A NOT of the first item with the second would retrieve only items in the first but not the second. (At least it is correct in all of my lectures!) Here is a correct version of what the figure should look like:

Boolean operators

Page 204: In Table 5.2, the value of the Relevance Feedback Query cell for term C should have a negative sign before it, i.e., -0.22.

Page 206: In the first full paragraph, the new weight of document 2 should be 4.75 + 0.98 = 5.73 and the new weight of document 5 should be 1.97 + 2.38 – 0.81 = 3.54 after the relevance feedback process.

In Chapters 6 and 8, there is some repeat of material that neither I nor book editor noted during the production process. These are not errata per se, but there is some repat of content. In Chapter 6, on page 245, the end of the first paragraph talks about linkage to the "electronic medical record (EMR)" but should use the preferred term, electronic health record (EHR). It also talks about linkage to human knowledge, but that topic is actually covered in section 6.6 on pages 258-259. In Chapter 8, on pages 339-343, much of the same material about linking to the EHR is repeated, although some additional research-related information is provded. The linkage to human knowledge sections do not overlap, and the Chapter 8 section offers more biomedically focused and research-oriented information.

Page 264: In the last sentence of the first paragraph, it is reported that there are 70,000-80,000 searches per month on Pubmed. That number should actually be 70,000,000-80,000,000. (

Page 287: In the last sentence of the first full paragraph, the word "inammatory" should be "inflammatory" in two places.

Page 331: In section, the material about improving hypertext capability is "below" and not "above" this section.

Page 343: In section 8.2.2, the first paragraph mentions SAPHIRE and MetaMap being described in Chapter 9, whereas they are actually described in section, pages 319-322.

Page 356: Not an error per se, but the fourth item in the bulleted list should really say "Unrealistic topics."

Page 380: Name in reference missing spaces: van Ginneken.

Page 468: Some names in index are missing spaces:
vanNieuwenhoven should be van Nieuwenhoven
vanRijsbergen should be van Rijsbergen
vanRooyen should be van Rooyen

Page 471: The Yang, Cohen, et al. (2008) reference in the book is incorrect. It should be:
Yang, J., Cohen, A., et al. (2008). Evaluation of a gene information summarization system by users during the analysis process of microarray datasets. BMC Bioinformatics, 5(10 Suppl 2): S5.

This page last updated - May 26, 2012