From solo to social information foraging theory

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Event

2009-01-29

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Event

From solo to social information foraging theory

Information Foraging Theory is a theory of human-information interaction that aims to explain and predict how people will best shape themselves to their information environments, and how information environments can best be shaped to people. The approach involves a kind of reverse engineering in which the analyst asks (a) what is the nature of the task and information environments, (b) why is a given system a good solution to the problem, and (c) how is that "ideal" solution realized (approximated) by mechanism. Typically, the key steps in developing a model of information foraging involve: (a) a rational analysis of the task and information environment (often drawing on optimal foraging theory from biology) and (b) a computational production system model of the cognitive structure of task. I will review work on individual information seeking, as well as out more recent studies of the social production, sharing, and use of information in areas such as wikis, social tagging, social network sites, and social search. 

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