June 23, 2010
Here’s the second in our series of audience questions from the first two webinars in our WestlawNext research expert series. (If you missed it, be sure to check out the first post, Refining your results.)
Q: What happened to ResultsPlus? Have you done away with it?
A: ResultsPlus is an integral part of WestlawNext, and now it’s incorporated into WestSearch. Results that appeared alongside results lists and documents are now included in results lists and ranked by relevance.
Q: How does Related Topics in WestlawNext differ from ResultsPlus?
A: ResultsPlus documents are retrieved by a search through secondary sources and briefs based on your search terms or terms in the document you are viewing. Related Topics uses a powerful new algorithm to identify significant issues within the document. Specifically, it looks at the key numbers and keywords in the document. It also analyzes the documents cited within the document and all of the citing references for the document. When clicked, these links retrieve documents that the search engine has determined are associated with and relevant to that issue. This makes it very easy to probe more deeply into a specific issue identified in one of your on-point documents.
Q: Are the Related Topics that appear with a case result specific to that case, or will they change as the focus of the query changes?
A: Related Topics are based on the document you are looking at; they are not tied to your search terms.
Q: What’s the relationship between Related Topics and Related Documents? How does it come up with those results?
A: When you are looking at a document, the right side of the screen lists Related Topics. When you are in a content category within a results list, the right side of the screen lists Related Documents. Related Documents are top results from other content categories in your search (Secondary Sources; Briefs; and Pleadings, Motions, and Memoranda).