Science Intelligence and InfoPros

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Posts Tagged ‘Information overload

Information obesity and doctors

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one study found that a primary care physician would have to read 341 relevant medical journals and 7,287 monthly articles, equaling more than 627 reading hours per month, just to stay current on all medical literature. But who has time when you’re treating patients?


Written by hbasset

February 6, 2013 at 7:55 pm

Posted in Science 2.0

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Curation contributes to Information overload (FUMSI)

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A nice piece at FUMSI:

Facebook, Flickr, Twitter, Linkedin, Blogger, WordPress, Google+, Pinterest – the number of sites available for individuals to create content seems infinite. And whilst adding an album to Facebook, checking in to Foursquare and posting an update on Twitter is fun, we’re all effectively contributing to digital information overload. (…)

Information overload is usually defined as a situation where an individual can have difficulties understanding an issue and making decisions, which can be caused by the presence of too much information. (…)

Some issues are identified:

  • Overload decreases efficiency as individuals and organisations waste time managing it
  • Information is duplicated easier because of sharing tools
  • Multitasking work environments kill productivity


The problem of information overload isn’t new, but it’s only in the digital age that more people have come to understand its impact.”

Read the full article at:

Mullan, James. Social media, information overload and careful curation. FUMSI, 4th of May 2012. Available from: [Accessed 9th of May 2012]





Written by hbasset

May 9, 2012 at 5:23 pm

Posted in Web 3.0

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Information fatigue: only 4% of tweets consist of real news

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The Oxford English Dictionary added the term “information fatigue” to its 2009 edition. Will “information burn-out” enter in the future?

As just one example, a study a couple of years ago by market-research firm Pear Analytics ( found that

  • only 4 percent of Twitter “tweets” consist of real news.
  • In contrast, spam makes up another 4 percent,
  • self-promotion 6 percent,
  • messages with “pass-along value” 9 percent,
  • conversation 38 percent,
  • and “pointless babble” 40 percent…

Goldsborough. Reid. Information Fatigue: Don’t Burden Others With Excess Information-and Don’t Let Them Burden You. InfoToday, Online: posted on Juky 25, 2011.



Written by hbasset

July 25, 2011 at 8:11 pm

Information overload is not a new problem

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, but technological and cultural change have created new challenges even while resolving others. 

This paper draws on a survey of early-career researchers to examine their approach to academic literature, such as how and why they read it, how much time they dedicate to it, what informs their reading choices, and how they assess quality.

Some results: 

  • 81% of early-career scholars and researchers say that “they feel they should read more of the literature than they have time to do
  • 25% suggest “they would need to read for more than 24 working hours a week to keep up
  •  technology-oriented solutions such as social bookmarking and search engines were less influential in selecting reading material than recommendations from colleagues and peers, reference lists in other material, and the journal brand.
  •  Scientists feel strongly that factors and rankings relating to impact and quality should be established at the level of the article, or attached to the author, rather than the journal.

Rapple, Charlie. The Role of the Critical Review Article in Alleviating INFORMATION OVERLOAD. Annual Reviews, White paper, March 2011. 16 p.

Written by hbasset

March 31, 2011 at 8:14 pm

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Conference slides available: NFAIS 2011

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The 2011 annual conference of the NFAIS (National Federation of Advanced Information Services), was dedicated to Information obesity, abundance, overload, tsunami, etc.

Some of the slides are freely available, including those of brilliant speakers like Rafael Sidi (Elsevier Sciverse), Victor Camlek (Springer), Dan Pollock (Nature), etc.

Written by hbasset

March 14, 2011 at 9:31 pm

Posted in Information

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The main problem isn’t too much information…

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Scientists are spending too much valuable time digging through content. (…)

The main problem isn’t too much information – researchers welcome the value of added content – but discoverability of the right information.

Researchers want to consume more information but don’t want to sift through irrelevant data.”

Judson Dunham (Elsevier, talking about results of the Future of Search and Discovery survey, which leads Elsevier to design SciVerse).

in Research Information, Issue 50, oct/Nov. 2010, pp. 12-13

Written by hbasset

September 28, 2010 at 7:49 pm

Posted in Science 2.0

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Solutions to Information overload

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The solution to data overload is to provide decision makers with “Intelligent Information” – better organised and structured information rapidly conveyed to the users’ preferred devices, says Thomson-Reuters experts in a new study.

In todays’ times, as info pros are overwhelmed by exploding data volumes, they do tend to employ an overly intuitive decision-making style when faced with unorganised information.

It indicated that when faced with unsorted, unverified “raw” data, 60% of decision makers will make “intuitive” decisions that can lead to poor outcomes.
On the other hand, when professionals are given more organised, better structured information which has context, they are able to apply a more rational style that results in better and more consistent decisions.

In order to realise the full potential found in increasing amounts of information, professionals need more intelligent information and better tools, not merely more information, the study concluded.
Thomson Reuters study proposes solutions to the problems of information overload. Information World Review, 12/07/10.

Written by hbasset

August 2, 2010 at 5:06 pm

Posted in 02: Analysis

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