February 17, 2014
The sponsored article titled Faceted Enterprise Search from Searchblox on Web Designer Depot promotes SearchBlox as a viable alternative to Google Mini or Search Appliance for enterprise search. The article provides screenshots to show the simplicity of setup in detail. The article explains,
“SearchBlox has crawlers that work for filesystems, websites, RSS feeds, and databases that work straight out-of-the-box. They can index both public and protected content, and can be set to crawl on a specified schedule so your users’ searches are always up to date.
The faceted search plugin that comes with SearchBlox is jQuery based, so it’s easy to integrate it into your website or application. Running WordPress? There’s a custom WP plugin for searching and indexing your WordPress site”
It sounds like the spirit of Endeca is still alive. Prior to SearchBlox being able to index and search the various file types all the user must do is set folder paths or root URLs. SearchBlox promises to be a quick and faceted search built on Apache Lucene. Users can manage everything through a web-based administrative console. SearchBlox allows for crawling third party websites, indexing API, synonym searches and customizable stopwords. All of these capabilities make SearchBlox an interesting choice for enterprise search.
Chelsea Kerwin, February 17, 2014
February 12, 2014
Last I knew, the Google Search Appliance (GAS) had trimmed its product line, eliminated the impulse buy option for the Mini, and kept the price at the higher end of the appliance market.
I learned over the last two years that Google has placed more than 60,000 GSAs in organizations. I have no idea if the number is valid, but if it is, the GSA is one of the top dogs in enterprise search. I also heard that there was a small team working on the GSA and an even smaller team handling customer support. Google pushes functions to resellers who deal with the customers. Google outsources manufacturing of the GSA. Most important, Google seems to have an off-again, on-again interest in on premises search. The future, as I understand it, is the cloud. The GSA is, in my opinion, an anachronism in the Nest, X Labs, and Android-Chrome world. But, hey, I have been wrong before. I once asserted that basic search should not be a challenge for most organizations. Wow, did I get that wrong! Jail time, law suits, and DARPA’s almost admission that search is not working notwithstanding.
The GSA has been around almost a decade. Version 7.2 is “a leader in the Garnet Enterprise Search MQ.” I certainly don’t doubt the word of an estimable azure chip consulting firm. No, no, no.
The new version, according to Google, delivers:
- Metadata sorting. A function available in the 1983 version of Fulcrum Technologies’ system
- language translation. A function available from Delphes in the 1990s
- A document preview function. iPhrase in 1999 delivered this feature
- Entity recognition. Verity implemented this function in the 1980s
- Dynamic navigation. Endeca rolled out this feature in 1998
In my opinion, the GSA is catching up to innovations available for many years from other vendors. Comparing the EPI Thunderstone and Maxxcat appliances to the GSA emphasizes that the GSA is not quite at parity with other products in the channel.
According to “Google Updates Enterprise Search Appliance Tool,”
The GSA 7.2 update comes more than a year after the firm upgraded the GSA to version 7.0, and builds on the features included in that update. The most notable includes the ability to improve the way data can be indexed with key attributes, such as author name, or the date it was created.
How much does a GSA cost? According to the US government’s GSAadvantage.gov, a 36 month license for a GB 7007 is $69,296 for 500,000 documents. Have more documents? Pay for an upgrade. However, I can use a hosted service like Blossom Software to index my content for about $2,400 per month. I can use the low cost dtSearch solution for $160 per seat. I can download an open source solution and do it myself.
For an organization with 20 million documents to index, the cost of the GSA solution noses into HP Autonomy territory. Too rich for my blood, and I think that lower cost appliance vendors will see the Google Search Appliance as a lead generator.
I wonder if those azure chip consultants have licensed the GSA to handle their Intranet information retrieval tasks?
Stephen E Arnold, February 12, 2014
January 20, 2014
With 2014 well under way, search experts are trying to predict what will happen for enterprise search. Search Appliance World has an article that takes a look on enterprise search in the past and future called, “The New Search Appliance Landscape: Reflections And Predictions With MaxxCAT.” Basic search commands that come in out-of-the-box system are old school and do not provide the robust solution enterprise systems need.
Search appliances became enterprise users’ favorite toys and everyone had to have the Google Mini Search Appliance, but those days are gone. Other search developers, such as MaxxCat, stepped up to the plate.
The article states:
“ ‘In 2013, we saw a lot of the fallout from that as customers realized they couldn’t replace their Google Mini appliance and went looking for viable alternatives that weren’t $30K. For us, this lead to a huge boost in sales of our entry level appliances and even some additional sales of our enterprise series appliances,’ MaxxCAT Director of Marketing & Sales Chris Whissen told Search Appliance World.”
The MaxxCat developers were interested in exploring new markets their search appliance could expand into. The company is also big on customer service and ensuring that clients know they are valued. The biggest endeavor being made, though, is offering MaxxCat’s clients an efficient solution to solve their search problems and to encourage more competition in the search application market. Google is no longer the small player, but some of its solutions have grown too expensive for its former clients. New companies like MaxxCat keep the market fresh and offer up new ideas.
Whitney Grace, January 20, 2014
January 2, 2014
The article Patent Removal Regretted, But Search Firm Pushes On from ComputerWorld explores the consequences of the Patents Amendment Bill on SYL Enterprise Search in New Zealand. SYL distinguishes itself from most Enterprise Search companies by basing its work not on hype but on “access to relevant information.”
The article states:
“SYL’s platform is based on a dictionary of 580,000 English words, with records of associations among them, such as what words are synonyms and how the concepts they indicate are related; for example that Wellington is in New Zealand. Specialist dictionaries can be added to deal with particular business areas with their own vocabularies. Surveys indicate as much as 25 percent of an executive’s time can be consumed by searching for information”
Syl’s engine works to reduce time-wasting metadata creation by automatically generating plenty of metadata by making associations with words in the document. The clause in the New Zealand bill that a computer program does not qualify as a patentable invention would not effect the patent that SYL already holds on its techniques, but that has not stopped SYL CEO Sean Wilson from voicing his dissent. He suggests that the time and investment put into any invention would be wasted if it were impossible to patent and protect against imitation.
Chelsea Kerwin, January 02, 2013
December 30, 2013
The article Enterprise Search Pie on HadoopSphere makes an interesting analogy between a heating up pie and enterprise search. The article claims to bear witness to the altering landscape of the search market. Some of the trends noted include more in-your-face pricing by conservative software, a rising interest in Solr and Lucene-based offerings, cloud based setups and “key spike in the offerings basket.” Analytics for search and content also play a part in enterprise set up, especially for eDiscovery, e-commerce and decision and content management systems.
The article also explains how Cloudera Search is a part of this change:
“Cloudera Search has Apache Solr integrated with CDH, including Apache Lucene, Apache SolrCloud, Apache Flume, Apache Hadoop MapReduce & HDFS, and Apache Tika. Cloudera Search also includes integrations that make searching more scalable, easy to use, and optimized for both near-real-time and batch-oriented indexing. Cloudera has adapted the SolrCloud project and leveraged Apache Zookeeper to coordinate distributed processing… From a customer perspective, this is an exciting time as Hadoop distributions venture out in broader territory offering them easier data mining capabilities.”
The article also emphasizes IBM Infosphere Data Explorer, once known as Vivismo, which works with BigInsights Hadoop distribution and LucidWorks Search with MapR, which provides data mining capabilities that ingests data into MapR through LucidWorks Search to make the data searchable. The article only imagines more “feature-rich” offerings in the future as competition and interest grow.
Chelsea Kerwin, December 30, 2013
December 20, 2013
One of the ArnoldIT goslings called to my attention a 2011 PDF white paper with the title (I kid you not):
Human inFormation (sic): Cloud, pan enterprise search, automation, video search, audio search, discovery, infrastructure platfo9rm, Big Data, business process management, mobile search, OEMs, and advanced analytics.
I checked on December 19, 2013, and this PDF was available at http://bit.ly/19Vwkqg.
That covers a lot of ground even for HP with or without Autonomy. The analysis includes some “factoids”; for example:
- Unstructured data represents 85% of all information but structure information is growing at 22% CAGR
- Unstructured information is growing at 62% CAGR.
- Users upload 35 hours of video every minute
- Unstructured data will grow to over 35 zettabytes by 2020
- Videos on YouTube were viewed 2 billion times per day, 20 times more than in 2006.
You get the idea. With lots of data, information is a problem. I need to pause a moment and catch my breath.
Well, “it’s not just about search.” Again, I must pause. One Mississippi, two Mississippi, and three Mississippi. Okay.
Fundamentally, the ability to understand meaning and automatically process information is all about distance, probabilities, relativeness (sic), definitions, slang, and more. It is an overwhelming and continually growing problem that requires advanced technology to solve.
One technique is to use structured data methods to solve the unstructured problem. (Wasn’t this the approach taken by Fulcrum Technologies, what? 25 or 30 years ago? I just read a profile of Fulcrum that suggested Fulcrum did this first and continues chugging along within the OpenText product line up which competes directly with HP in information archiving.
HP points out, “People are Lazy.” More interesting is this observation, “People are stupid.” I thought about HP’s write off of billions after owning a company for a couple of years, but I assume that HP means “other people” are stupid, not HP people.
December 9, 2013
Oracle prides itself on its Secure Enterprise Search that is advertised as offering secure, high quality search that easily works across all information sources on the enterprise format. The search product digs deep in local, private, and shared files housed on databases, intranets, document management systems, applications, and portals. With great ease it crawls and indexes results, guaranteeing that the first items in the results list are the most relevant. Also the Secure Enterprise Search offers analytics on search results and usage patterns.
Oracle provides current and prospective clients with “Oracle Secure Enterprise Search Documentation.” Oracle has released the 11g version of the Secure Enterprise Search with the following key assets:
· “Highly secure crawling, indexing, and searching
· A simple, intuitive search interface with browsing and display of search results by automatically-extracted topic and metadata attribute clusters
· Excellent search quality, with the most relevant items for a query shown first, even when the query spans diverse public or private data sources
· Analytics on search results and understanding of usage patterns
· Sub-second query performance
· Ease of administration and maintenance leveraging your existing IT expertise.”
Oracle continues to be one of the reliable enterprise searches, but like most software these days it faces strong competition from open source technology.
Whitney Grace, December 09, 2013
November 18, 2013
When this article came up on my news feed it appeared to be an average press release: “Secure Enterprise Search 22.214.171.124. Now Available For PeopleTools 8.53.” Companies make upgrades everyday and if we wrote about all of them Beyond Search would turn into an advertising blog. A second glance made me catch notice of the news source: the Oracle Blog. Now this is an interesting development, because Oracle is keeping secure enterprise search breathing.
Secure search is a necessity for enterprise applications, especially those that deal with employee and customer related information. Oracle’s PeopleSoft software is one of the leading human resources and customer management products and the upgrades provide necessary support:
“We are pleased to announce that Oracle Secure Enterprise Search (SES) 126.96.36.199 is now available to PeopleSoft Customers on PeopleTools 8.53. The minimum PeopleTools Patch Version Required to adopt SES 188.8.131.52 is PeopleTools 8.53.06. This version of SES provides some important benefits for PeopleSoft Customers, particularly in the areas of platform support, distributed architecture support, and RAC support. You can get all the details on this update on My Oracle Support.”
Good for Oracle, but are they investing their time wisely in a secure search when there are so many other options on the market? Endeca, RightNow, and InQuira options also available and they are under the Oracle umbrella.
Whitney Grace, November 18, 2013
November 6, 2013
Perceptive Software is working with social collaboration firm Jive, we learn from “Perceptive Software Brings Enterprise Search App to Jive Apps Market” at PRWeb. Perceptive Search has been integrated into Jive’s platform, and is available as an app through the Jive Apps Market. The press release reports:
“The Perceptive Enterprise Search App provides companies using Jive with a powerful enterprise search tool to eliminate information silos and aggregate content across multiple repositories, including SharePoint, ECM solutions, traditional file shares, legacy Lotus Notes databases, and others. The app is fully functional right out of the box, readily indexing—and giving users access to—content across multiple repositories and scaling to accommodate spikes in volume.
“The app empowers users to explore data relationships through analytical, reporting and visualization features, giving businesses more opportunity to identify trends and drive value from their content. Such value may be realized in the form of more efficient product development, customer service, marketing and more.”
Perceptive CTO Brian Anderson notes that his company uses Jive with Perspective Search for their own employees, and reports that the app has sped up their own searches. The platform’s analysis, reporting, and visualization features remove those chores from users’ to-do lists, allowing more time to act on resulting insights, he says.
Acquired by Lexmark in 2010, Perceptive Software offers a range of process- and content-management solutions. In business since 1995, Perceptive serves clients in a wide range of industries. The company is headquartered in Shawnee, Kansas and, according to their About page, is currently hiring.
Folks at Jive Software are convinced that “social business is the future.” This is why they employ the latest technology to help clients cultivate crowdsourcing, collaboration, and customer engagement, forces they say are bound to improve the business world for both customers and workers. Founded in 2012, Jive already has five far-flung offices, including their headquarters in Palo Alto, California.
Cynthia Murrell, November 06, 2013
October 28, 2013
Pebble Road’s article analyzing search is titled The Curse of Enterprise Search and How to Break It. The curse referred to is created by the misconception that once an enterprise search software has been purchased it will do all the work and the business it is being used for is already handled. The article argues against this lackadaisical approach to search, explaining that search needs to be implemented and designed for a given business with the business’s users in mind. It argues that “search is a negotiation” which is not simply a means to an end but a way to figure out the right question. The article explains with a comparison to camera shopping,
“When you’re searching for a camera, and if you don’t know exactly which one you want, you’re going to start on a search journey, or the negotiation. The journey may take you from locating the right type of cameras ? to comparing them ? to verifying their details. These three modes are not the same. You are seeking different outcomes in each mode. The modes are like layers of meaning. Meaning that will eventually lead you to make a decision.”
Metadata and appropriate interfaces are the answer proposed by the article to designing support search modes that will be useful and productive. The greatest issue is when there is a growing crevasse between the wealth of information and findability. To simplify, don’t put the cart before the horse. Design search for your business and then put in place.
Chelsea Kerwin, October 28, 2013