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This is an updated version of a tutorial on the Robertson-Spärck-Jones Probabilistic Model.

It is available now at


The model computes global weights, known as RSJ weights, based on Independence Assumptions and Ordering Principles for probable relevance. The model subsumes IDF and IDFP as RSJ weights in the absence of relevance information.

Enjoy it.

09-26-2016 Update: A new section was added to the tutorial before the Conclusion section. References were added accordingly. Few lines were edited.

PS: I corrected the original publication date to read “Published: 03-30-2009” which is the correct date. My fault.