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A broader perspective: System quality and user utility

Formal evaluation measures are at some distance from our ultimate interest in measures of human utility: how satisfied is each user with the results the system gives for each information need that they pose? The standard way to measure human satisfaction is by various kinds of user studies. These might include quantitative measures, both objective, such as time to complete a task, as well as subjective, such as a score for satisfaction with the search engine, and qualitative measures, such as user comments on the search interface. In this section we will touch on other system aspects that allow quantitative evaluation and the issue of user utility.


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