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Faceted search as a method for exploratory search is a search interface technique for Boolean retrieval that provides a good compromise between the wish to guide the user and the need to give freedom to the user. Both, guidance and freedom are needed in order to enable him (or her) to accomplish his search goal as quickly and efficiently as possible. The search goal can be both, to retrieve a target image (lookup search) or to get an overview of a collection as the basis for accomplishing complex search tasks (exploratory search). VisualFlamenco is about bringing content-based image retrieval and faceted search together. While there is some preexisting work towards faceted search based on automatically extracted metadata, the base innovation of our work is to visualize the meaning of facets and let the user pick visualized facets directly. The main point is this research is to give the user the right expectations about what the system can achieve. We see this as a step towards dependable multimedia search, search interfaces that do not promise more than they can achieve. A mismatch of expectations and possibilities has been denoted by some as one of the main problems in current research about multimedia search. Within this paper we present a visual faceted search tool that seeks to provide dependable image search. We describe its base idea, the features used, as well as user experiments done using the system.
Date of Conference: 18-20 June 2008