An increasing number of databases are becoming Web accessible through form-based search interfaces, and many of these sources are database-driven e-commerce sites. It is a daunting task for users to access numerous Web sites individually to get the desired information. Hence, providing a unified access to multiple e-commerce search engines selling similar products is of great importance in allowing users to search and compare products from multiple sites with ease. One key task for providing such a capability is to integrate the Web search interfaces of these e-commerce search engines so that user queries can be submitted against the integrated interface. Currently, integrating such search interfaces is carried out either manually or semiautomatically, which is inefficient and difficult to maintain. In this paper, we present WISE-Integrator - a tool that performs automatic integration of W eb I nterfaces of S earch E ngines. WISE-Integrator explores a rich set of special metainformation that exists in Web search interfaces and uses the information to identify matching attributes from different search interfaces for integration. It also resolves domain differences of matching attributes. In this paper, we also discuss how to automatically extract information from search interfaces that is needed by WISE-Integrator to perform automatic interface integration. Our experimental results, based on 143 real-world search interfaces in four different domains, indicate that WISE-Integrator can achieve high attribute matching accuracy and can produce high-quality integrated search interfaces without human interactions.
The VLDB Journal – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 1, 2004
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