|Weekly News Digest
July 1, 2002 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITIís Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.
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Web Book Retailers Go Head-to-Head
Customers have recently been offered shipping discounts and price cuts on books by several of the large Web-based book retailers. Amazon sent a letter to customers announcing that it was lowering from $99 to $49 the minimum order amount to receive free shipping. On the Amazon.com site it's called "Super Saver Shipping," and eligible products are marked with an icon. Video games, toys, e-books, and heavy items, among others, are excluded. Products with free shipping will take an extra 3 to 5 days to be sent, according to information on the site.
Buy.com then announced it was eliminating shipping on all orders except for very heavy items like TVs or computers. The company also said it would guarantee that books and audiobooks sold on its site would be priced at least 10-percent lower than the same titles on Amazon.com. Users must submit a request for a "price-match refund."
Not to be outdone, barnesandnoble.com (http://www.bn.com) announced free shipping when you buy two or more items and ship to the same address, and a summer sale of 30-percent off new books (those published after January 1, 2002). The company also announced the introduction of "What America's Reading," a new feature that provides hourly, daily, and weekly updates on best-selling books (http://www.bn.com/bestsellers). The data are organized in a number of ways, including a Top Ten list of bestsellers across all categories and formats at both Barnes & Noble stores and on barnesandnoble.com; lists of the best-selling titles in more than 300 categories; and charts that track the movement of the top titles. The Top Ten books will be discounted at 40-percent off list price at barnesandnoble.com.
Sources: Amazon.com, Buy.com, barnesandnoble.com
Terra Lycos Launches Lycos Search 6.0
Terra Lycos (http://www.terralycos.com) has announced the launch of its new Lycos Search 6.0 service (http://search.lycos.com), which offers new features that are designed to enhance the relevancy of search results and provide additional functionality. Users now have access to over 2 billion full-text Web documents powered by Fast Search & Transfer (FAST), Terra Lycos' search technology partner. With the FAST engine, the service provides a full refresh every 9 days, which is claimed to be twice as fresh as the nearest competitor.
New features include domain filtering to present only the most relevant results page from a site; Adobe PDF document searching; search-tab navigation for easy access to search results; and document summaries that contain the keyword search terms from the query. Lycos News Search (from FAST) provides access to news-specific content from more than 3,000 news sites and is refreshed every 60 seconds. Lycos Shopping Search offers comprehensive sources for products and services on the Web, featuring relevant search results from content providers like Overture, Barnes & Noble, Smart Bargains, Red Envelope, DealTime, and more.
Source: Terra Lycos
Quiver Announces QKS Topic Advisor, New Release of QKS Classifier
Quiver, Inc. (http://www.quiver.com), a provider of categorization software for enterprise and online content, has announced version 2.0 of QKS Classifier, a significant upgrade to its flagship taxonomy platform and the core of its Quiver Knowledge Suite. The company also introduced QKS Topic Advisor, a hybrid taxonomy topic generator that is the second product in the suite.
QKS Classifier is an end-to-end categorization application for organizing, managing, and distributing unstructured data through the highest quality end-user directories. The updated release offers a choice for enterprises in need of a comprehensive and quickly deployable solution for organizing high-value information such as research, regulated, or strategic content. The new version provides a combination of multiple categorization techniques (including a new Support Vector Machine Algorithm) and a Business Rules Engine (with automated actions for publishing and expiration) to give a high level of accuracy and control to information organization.
According to the announcement, the new QKS Topic Advisor is an effective way to create and evaluate categories in a taxonomy while ensuring the highest level of accuracy in organizing information. QKS Topic Advisor rapidly scans a corpus of documents and generates suggested topics for human review and approval. Whether used to speed taxonomy implementation or enhance a live directory, the system gives information managers complete control, with the ability to accept, reject, or modify results.
Source: Quiver, Inc.
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