ArchiText has developed a terminology database for use with Construction Index, a periodicals index. This paper describes the database structure and how the database is used to improve consistency of indexing and precision of searching. The terminology database combines functions of a thesaurus and a classification system, and references sources of technical definitions. Terms are arranged in hierarchies that allow for up to three broader terms for each term. Synonyms can be classified by type, such as acronym, colloquialism, or British term. Terms map to subject headings for various report formats, including ICONDA and CSIMASTERFORMAT. The principal long term goal is to develop the database in a manner that facilitates accurate searching of the database by users who have varying degrees of knowledge of the technical terminology. Terminology mistakes and questions generated by indexers for Construction Index, who are architectural students, provide feedback for improving database content.
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