Technical Notes - e1
Hands On - e6
Next Generation Gateway - e7
Next Generation Gateway
NLM offers an increasing number of Internet-based information resources. A new intelligent gateway system, now under development, will allow NLM's users to initiate searches in these multiple retrieval systems from one interface at one address in cyberspace. As a working name, NLM is calling the new search system the Next Generation Gateway. The name is subject to change.
The target audience for the new search system is the Internet user who comes to NLM not knowing exactly what NLM resources are available or how best to search for the information they need. This audience includes physicians and other health care providers, researchers, librarians, students, and increasingly, patients, their families, and the public. NLM's new MEDLINEplus site for consumer health information is right on target for these new users of the NLM Web site and is likely to create a strong influx of users who wonder "So what else is there?" The new gateway can offer links to other information and links from those sources back to the consumer health information in MEDLINEplus.
The system design reflects a concerted effort to build on the strength of the intelligent gateway concept: the ability to offer value-added capabilities for the user who does not know enough to ask for them. Links within and across databases will be vigorously exploited. Searches in clusters of databases or simultaneously in all databases accessible to the gateway will be offered.
The new gateway will initially be brought up in parallel with Internet Grateful Med. To reduce the likelihood of confusing users, individual databases will over time be removed from the set accessible through Internet Grateful Med as they become available on the Next Generation Gateway or elsewhere. In the first implementation phase, the gateway will search PubMed, LocatorPlus, and a new full text retrieval system that will include information such as conference abstracts. Access to other systems including MEDLINEplus, TOXNET on the Web, and the forthcoming NIH clinical trials database will follow.