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(information science)
A measure of how closely a given object (file, web page, database record, etc.) matches a user's search for information.

The relevance algorithms used in most large web search engines today are based on fairly simple word-occurence measurement: if the word "daffodil" occurs on a given page, then that page is considered relevant to a query on the word "daffodil"; and its relevance is quantised as a factor of the number of times the word occurs in the page, on whether "daffodil" occurs in title of the page or in its META keywords, in the first N words of the page, in a heading, and so on; and similarly for words that a stemmer says are based on "daffodil".

More elaborate (and resource-expensive) relevance algorithms may involve thesaurus (or synonym ring) lookup; e.g. it might rank a document about narcissuses (but which may not mention the word "daffodil" anywhere) as relevant to a query on "daffodil", since narcissuses and daffodils are basically the same thing. Ditto for queries on "jail" and "gaol", etc.

More elaborate forms of thesaurus lookup may involve multilingual thesauri (e.g. knowing that documents in Japanese which mention the Japanese word for "narcissus" are relevant to your search on "narcissus"), or may involve thesauri (often auto-generated) based not on equivalence of meaning, but on word-proximity, such that "bulb" or "bloom" may be in the thesaurus entry for "daffodil".

Word spamming essentially attempts to falsely increase a web page's relevance to certain common searches.

See also subject index.
References in periodicals archive ?
Beyond the pertinence of the topic and, for our journal, its unusual origin, the comparison of approaches, emphases and treatment given to the theme are of interest.
They begin with theoretical issues: main issues and clarifications of co-eventive adjuncts, degrees of pertinence in closed adjuncts, participial syntax and degrees of event integration in open adjuncts, and a discourse perspective on competing structures.
The readings were followed by discussion that touched on how the book's findings counter stereotypes about women in the region as well as its pertinence to Muslim women everywhere.
The identified qualitative characteristics are: intelligibility, pertinence, reliability and comparison, which are subdued to two major restrictions, namely:
The purpose of the study was to explore, the pertinence of leadership and how they grow with the followers.
The Moroccan official noted that the changes taking place in the Maghreb region support the pertinence of Morocco's proposal to end the artificial conflict over the Sahara.
The level of protection granted with respect to trade secrets and parasitic copying varies from one member state to another and the pertinence of member states' current legal framework in the EU is problematic.
Foued Mebazaa underlined that the gains made in Tunisia on the basis of a gradual approach reflects the pertinence of the choices made since the November 7, 1987 Change, under President Zine el Abidine Ben Ali's leadership, as part of loyalty to Tunisia, to serve its higher interests and enhance its prestige among nations.
According to the company, the contract allows the purchase of all the modules of Intercim's Pertinence Suite software and associated services for each of the subsidiaries of EADS worldwide.
DS will also provide the ability for companies utilising the V5 DELMIA a[euro]" ENOVIA Manufacturing Hub or the DS V6 environment to deliver manufacturing process plans and work instructions to the shop floor through the Intercim Pertinence MES system.
Articles are judged on the basis of pertinence to the appraisal practice; contribution to valuation literature; provocative thought; thought-provoking presentation of concepts and practical problems; and logical analysis, perceptive reasoning, and clarity of presentation.
De Rothschild ordered a work study into the rules on interference, which rather than opening the door to alignment with Britain, Ireland, South Africa and most other major countries, has, according to the Fly's Gallic informant, "highlighted quite a large consensus concerning the pertinence of the French rules policy's original principles".