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1.  Querying Event Sequences by Exact Match or Similarity Search: Design and Empirical Evaluation 
Interacting with computers  2012;24(2):55-68.
Specifying event sequence queries is challenging even for skilled computer professionals familiar with SQL. Most graphical user interfaces for database search use an exact match approach, which is often effective, but near misses may also be of interest. We describe a new similarity search interface, in which users specify a query by simply placing events on a blank timeline and retrieve a similarity-ranked list of results. Behind this user interface is a new similarity measure for event sequences which the users can customize by four decision criteria, enabling them to adjust the impact of missing, extra, or swapped events or the impact of time shifts. We describe a use case with Electronic Health Records based on our ongoing collaboration with hospital physicians. A controlled experiment with 18 participants compared exact match and similarity search interfaces. We report on the advantages and disadvantages of each interface and suggest a hybrid interface combining the best of both.
PMCID: PMC3286623  PMID: 22379286
Temporal Categorical Data; Event Sequence; Temporal Query Interface; Similarity Search; Similarity Measure; Similan
2.  A Scalable Architecture for Incremental Specification and Maintenance of Procedural and Declarative Clinical Decision-Support Knowledge 
Clinical guidelines have been shown to improve the quality of medical care and to reduce its costs. However, most guidelines exist in a free-text representation and, without automation, are not sufficiently accessible to clinicians at the point of care. A prerequisite for automated guideline application is a machine-comprehensible representation of the guidelines. In this study, we designed and implemented a scalable architecture to support medical experts and knowledge engineers in specifying and maintaining the procedural and declarative aspects of clinical guideline knowledge, resulting in a machine comprehensible representation. The new framework significantly extends our previous work on the Digital electronic Guidelines Library (DeGeL) The current study designed and implemented a graphical framework for specification of declarative and procedural clinical knowledge, Gesher. We performed three different experiments to evaluate the functionality and usability of the major aspects of the new framework: Specification of procedural clinical knowledge, specification of declarative clinical knowledge, and exploration of a given clinical guideline. The subjects included clinicians and knowledge engineers (overall, 27 participants). The evaluations indicated high levels of completeness and correctness of the guideline specification process by both the clinicians and the knowledge engineers, although the best results, in the case of declarative-knowledge specification, were achieved by teams including a clinician and a knowledge engineer. The usability scores were high as well, although the clinicians’ assessment was significantly lower than the assessment of the knowledge engineers.
PMCID: PMC3099486  PMID: 21611137
Medical informatics; clinical guidelines; decision support systems; knowledge representation; knowledge acquisition; knowledge bases; ontologies; information retrieval; human computer interaction; artificial intelligence; digital libraries; service oriented architecture.

Results 1-2 (2)