This website is hosted by me (Chirag Shah), an associate professor at University of Washington. For now, it is intended to provide resources for my IR class students.

I taught my self-designed course on Information Retrieval Systems Design & Implementation in Fall 2008 and Spring 2009 in class at UNC Chapel Hill. I taught the same class online in Fall 2009. More information about how and what each semester is taught can be found from that semester's site.

Course Description
Tools for organizing and accessing information have become indispensable. It is critical, therefore, to understand their design and operational foundations. In this course students will have an opportunity to learn about search engines, web crawling, and some Web 2.0 technologies based on hands-on experience and with a focus on techniques that can be used to access, retrieve, organize, and present information. Students will work with practical developmental tools and learn relevant concepts through experimentation. For instance, students will employ an open source search engine and learn about indexing, retrieving, and ranking techniques.

Topics Covered
  • IR with MySQL and text files
  • Indexing unstructured textual information
  • Query processing and retrieval
  • Retrieval models (vector space, boolean, language models, probabilistic and relevance models)
  • Query term weighing and suggestions
  • Evaluation of IR systems
  • User interfaces for IR
  • IR on Web 2.0
  • Web crawling
  • Information organization