Trip Database Blog

Liberating the literature


July 2016

Quick update

There are lots of things going on in the background and these will start to become visible over the next six months (some very soon).  To give a flavour of what we’re currently working on:

  • Using machine learning to better identify controlled trials for inclusion in Trip.
  • Using machine learning to assess for potential bias in controlled trials included in Trip.
  • The answer engine is slowly creeping towards a robust testing version.  Version 1 was available 4 months ago but we wanted to make it even better so we have re-built it from the bottom up.  I’m confident it’ll be worth the wait.
  • Search suggestions – an improved drop-down search suggestion feature PLUS a new post-search search suggestions feature.  So, if you conduct a search we’ll display a number of related searches that you might prefer to use to give a more focused search.
  • Improved search algorithm – this is a really exciting development and we’ll be using a number of cutting edge technologies to improve the search results.  These will all be tested to ensure we get the optimal balance.

And, when the above are all finished, we’ll move on to our Q&A community idea….!

Poll results

With just shy of 500 respondents the results of our poll are as follows:

Question 1: Why do you use Trip? (showing all results that scored at least 10%)

  • To find out what the latest research is for a given topic – 24%
  • To answer a clinical Q (raised by patient care but not answered at same time) – 18%
  • I’m an information specialist using Trip to support a health professional – 16%
  • To answer a clinical Q at the point of care – 12%
  • I’m an information specialist carrying out a review (eg to find latest evidence) – 11%
  • I’m a researcher undertaking a review to support a paper and/or research bid – 10%

Question 2: How would you best like to pay for Trip Pro?

  • I’ll get my institute to pay – 34%
  • I’ll never pay for Pro – 32%
  • Annual payment (currently the only option for personal use) – 23%
  • Monthly payment (a proposed alternative for personal subscribers) – 11%

Question 3: What new features would you like to see on Trip?

  • Search suggestions (after a search we suggest additional search terms to help focus the search)? – 35%
  • Mis-spelling function (to detect and correct spelling mistakes)? – 19%
  • Better point of care support (eg adverse drug event, interactions) – 14%
  • Better search results – 10%


Question 1: Surprised by the proportion that use Trip as a point of care tool.  Also, the top reason for using Trip is to locate the latest evidence.  I think we can improve on that!

Question 2: No surprises!

Question 3: Delighted with the top four as we’re working on all 4 of these.  In fact we should be testing the top one shortly.

Blog at

Up ↑