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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.
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References in periodicals archive ?
(426) A request "must set forth the pertinency and manner of applying cited prior art to every claim for which reexamination is requested." (427) This pertinency requirement would likely be overly burdensome on a judge and therefore it is proposed that the Director waive this requirement when the request is initiated by a judge.
Master of the exactitude and pertinency of words, Sophocles says loud and clear: nothing.
Therefore, lower income women are not important to the argument at hand because, as Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca (1969) suggest, by "the very fact of selecting certain elements and presenting them to the audience, their importance and pertinency to the discussion are implied" (p.
See PERELMAN & OLBRECHTS-TYTECA, supra note 21, at 116 ("By the very fact of selecting certain elements and presenting them to the audience, their importance and pertinency to the discussion are implied.
My own position with respect to this question of the pertinency of Foucault's work to early modern studies, then, is closer to that of Lisa Freinkel, who comments:
I can do no more here than suggest its pertinency. But it has been thrust upon the Court with a requirement for prompt decision in recent years.
456, 468 (1961)("'Unless the subject matter has been made to appear with undisputable clarity, it is the duty of the investigative body, upon objection of the witness on grounds of pertinency, to state for the record the subject under inquiry at that time and the manner in which the propounded questions are pertinent thereto'"), quoting, Watkins v.