: Using the Knowbot
Information Service enables an Internet user to find another's address.
Methods of finding addresses range from a rather purpose-defeating telephone call to using network directory services such as WHOIS, Knowbot, or NETFIND.
Concise descriptions of the directory services WHOIS, Knowbot, and NETFIND along with other aids to finding email addresses may be found in The Internet Companion, 128-33, and in Crossing the Internet Threshold, 43-44.
Some years ago, Apple Computers produced a video showing the Knowledge Navigator, sort of an information valet or what some are now calling a knowbot (knowledge + robot)--that is, an automated valet or maid that knows not only its client's informational needs but also the client's Personal qualities to shape the package of information.
Those knowbots, or information valets, or however those automated retrievers of information will be known, of course entail the use of expert systems; expert systems, in turn, are based on the advice of experts--the ways in which experts respond to queries, or solve a problem, or perform a particular operation.
If you thought that sounded threatening enough, "the NRI plans to use Knowbot demons as a linchpin of its ambitious Digital Library System" (p.
This author first read about demon knowbots in an article by Steinberg (1990):
As proposed in its 1988 report, "The Digital Library Project, Volume I: The World of Knowbots," the NRI would explore the technology needed to create a national "information infrastructure" linking huge collections of bibliographic information on public and private computer systems across the country.
The KnowBots are devilishly clever robots that have a voracious appetite for singular categories of knowledge.
To track down and capture a thief, ACME agents will need to out-think the KnowBots in fast-paced, quiz-show challenges.
Comparisons with other systems continually suggest adapting cataloging practices to a world populated by computer robots, knowbots
, and other intelligent software programs.
Table 1 Networked Resources and Services Currently Taught Number of Programs Resource/Service (n = 37) Electronic Mail 34 Interest Groups, LISTSERVs 35 Directories 20 Remote Login 30 Library Catalogs 36 Database Services 33 Campus-wide Information Systems 32 Bulletin Boards 29 Electronic journals 26 Freenets 24 Other 3 FTP (file transfer) 34 Internet Utilities Gopher and Veronica 31 Archie 28 Wide Area Information Servers (WAIS) 25 HYTELNET 21 World-Wide Web 15 Knowbots
9 Commercial Databases and Vendors DIALOG 33 OCLC 26 OCLC/EPIC 22 OCLC/First Search 18 BRS 8 Nexis/Lexis 6 WilsonLine 2 Infomart 2 RLIN 1 CAN/OLE 1 Data-Star 1 Infoglobe 1 Medline 1 Westlaw 1 Other Resources Compuserve 2 Prodigy 1 CD-ROM servers and products 1 News readers 1