Spotlight: Mindbreeze on the SharePoint Stage
November 1, 2011
A new feature, mentioned in the Beyond Search story “Software and Smart Content.” We will be taking a close look at some vendors. Some will be off the board; for example, systems which have been acquired and, for all practical purposes, their feature set frozen. I have enlisted Abe Lederman, one of the founders of Verity (now a unit of Autonomy and Hewlett Packard) and now the chief executive of Deep Web Technologies.
Our first company under the spotlight is Mindbreeze, which is a unit of Fabasoft, which is one of the leading, if not the leading, Microsoft partners in Austria. Based in Linz, Mindbreeze offers are remarkably robust search and content processing solution.
The company is a leader in adding functionality to basic search, finding, and indexing tasks in organizations worldwide. In August 2011, CMSWire’s “A Strategic Look at SharePoint: Economics, Information & People” made this point:
SharePoint continues to grow in organizations of all sizes, from document collaboration and intranet publishing, to an increasing focus on business process workflows, internet and extranets. Today, many organizations are now in flight with their 2010 upgrades, replacing other portals and ECM applications, and even embracing social computing all on SharePoint.
The Mindbreeze system, according to Daniel Fallmann, the individual who was the mastermind behind the Mindbreeze technology, “snaps in” to Microsoft SharePoint and addresses many of the challenges that a SharePoint administrator encounters when trying to respond to diverse user needs in search and retrieval. In as little as a few hours, maybe a day, a company struggling to locate information in a SharePoint installation can be finding documents using a friendly, graphical interface.
My recollection of Mindbreeze is that it was a “multi stage” service oriented architecture. For me, this means that system administrators can configure the system from a central administrative console and work through the graphical set up screens to handle content crawling (acquisition), indexing, and querying.
The system supports mobile search and can support “apps,” which are quickly becoming the preferred method of accessing certain types of reports. The idea is that a Mindbreeze user from sales can access the content needed prior to a sales call from a mobile device.
According to Andreas Fritschi, a government official at Canton Thurgau:
Fabasoft Mindbreeze Enterprise makes our everyday work much easier. This is also an advantage for our citizens. They receive their information much faster. This software can be used by people in all sectors of public administration, from handling enquiries to people in management.
Why is the tight integration with Microsoft SharePoint important? There are three reasons that our work in search and content processing highlights.
First, there are more than 100 million SharePoint installations and most of the Fortune 1000 are using SharePoint to provide employees with content management, collaboration, and specialized search-centric functions such as locating a person with a particular area of knowledge in one’s organization. With Mindbreeze, these functions become easier to use and require no custom coding to implement within a SharePoint environment.
Second, users are demanding answers, not laundry lists. The Mindbreeze approach allows a licensee to set up the system to deliver exactly with a group of users or a single user requires. The tailoring occurs within the Fabasoft and Mindbreeze “composite content environment.” Fabasoft and Mindbreeze deliver easy-to-use configuration tools. Mash ups are a few clicks away.
Third, Mindbreeze makes use of the Fabasoft work flow technology. Information can be moved from Point A to Point B without requiring changing users’ work behaviors. As a result, user satisfaction rises.
Stephen E Arnold, November 1, 2011
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