The term information retrieval is attributed to Calvin Mooers around 1950, and its use is associated with the explosion of scientific documentation produced during and following World War II. Information retrieval refers to the set of processes by which information can be extracted from a larger accumulation. Most typically, the term refers to the identification of documents from a collection or database of documents, or of specific information (e.g., facts, paragraphs, phrases, etc.) within a set of documents. As computer-based systems have evolved to support storage and retrieval of information in a variety of forms, some have broadened the definition of information retrieval to include retrieval of data elements and values from numeric and statistical databases, image retrieval from image databases, and audio retrieval from ...

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