Two of the leading traditional information services, The Dialog Corporation and Dow Jones Interactive, continue to reshape and upgrade their Web offerings.
A Dialog "Suite"
The Dialog Corporation has initiated a suite of Web database collections targeting 10 major market sectors. Based on the DIALOG Select service (http://www.dialogselect.com), each of the collections has its own URL. Users can also gateway through the central DIALOG Select service itself.
Dialog promotes flat-fee subscription payments for intranet access to the 10 new products. Each sector has its own point-and-click interface for the basic areas of interest, such as company information, upcoming meetings and conferences, associations and organizations, plus specialized focuses in each topical area. Categories include the following:
Searchers can combine more than one category to expand their searching tools and link to relevant sources in other areas. In the future, Dialog plans to incorporate multimedia features and other improvements.
DJI Features for "All-Web" Access
As Dow Jones Interactive (http://www.dowjones.com) moves toward "all-Web" access and the elimination of its Windows pilot software access route, it continues to adapt features from the Windows product for the Web environment and add new features. In late July it began offering Publications Library users the option to save up to 25 different searches, including search statements and all associated options and publications. Users can now save up to 25 different source lists that each include up to 50 items, such as individual publications or groups of publications.
In August the company plans to initiate a "Preferences" option in the Publications Library that lets searchers customize their search defaults including modifications on the following: the default channel for searching (words or phrases, company, industry, person); number of headlines displayed (up to 30); optional highlighting of search terms in articles; addition of Dow Jones source codes in the source details area; results displayed in either lead sentences or headlines-only format; default part of article to search; default date ranges; results displayed in either date or relevance-ranked format.
Several more improvements should occur before October, including major changes to the current, daily collections in the Business Newsstand portion of the service.