New Version of Sail Labs Indexer

December 11, 2014

We’ve learned that Sail Labs has put out the next iteration of its Media Mining Indexer from the company’s post, “Sail Labs Announces Availability of Release Version 2014-2 and Media Mining Indexer 6.3.” The refreshingly straightforward press release offers bulleted lists of new features and major changes to be found throughout the new version. For the indexer, it lists:

    • Support for sentiment analysis, i.e. classification of text segments into positive, negative, neutral or mixed sentiment
    • Currently supported languages: US and International English, German and Russian
    • Support for continuous intermittent result output, without final XML result, which increases performance in cases where collective results are not required.
    • Support for licensing using a central license manager/server (LiMa), which is intended for use with cloud based use cases.
    • Script-based building of language models using lmtscript.

For those not already familiar with Media Mining Indexer, it processes speech from multiple sources into XML, which can then be uploaded into a range of digital-asset-management systems for subsequent search and retrieval. The software boasts automatic speech recognition, speaker ID, speaker change detection, story detection, and topic classification.

Sail Labs specializes in high-end software for speech and multimedia analysis for vertical markets. Its name derives from “Speech Artificial Intelligence Language Laboratories.” Sail Labs is located in Vienna, Austria, and was founded in 1999.

Cynthia Murrell, December 11, 2014

Sponsored by, developer of Augmentext

Secret Hiring Tool for Silicon Valley Types

December 8, 2014

It is harder than ever to find a job for young graduates and seasoned workers. Yet according to the FitFrnd blog, Silicon Valley is having trouble finding good employees. The post “Silicon Valley’s Best-Kept Secret: How AngelList Is Slowly Disrupting The Hiring Industry” explains that rather than relying on “old-fashioned” job search engines, AngelList’s is proving to be more reliable in finding talent.

AngelList is primarily a crowdfundung Web site used by startups to raise money for new endeavors. AngelList, however, is proving to be a new resource to find a job or locate someone to fill the position. Other career Web sites fail to attract the right talent. The post explains how FitFrnd ad trouble finding a blogger/content marketer:

“We finally decided to give AngelList a serious try. We had tried it before, but our efforts had been half-hearted. This time we improved our copy, added information such as why the company is such an amazing place to work (it is!), details about salary and equity ranges, and even screenshots of the app. Within a few days, we have received about 80 resumes, including some really compelling candidates.”

What makes AngelList different is that it allows applicants to apply privately and know the salary up front. It also cuts out the middleman. While the information is searchable, you have to join AngelList. While it does not cost to join, it eventually might, but the price is you are paying for a service that works…for the moment.

Whitney Grace, December 08, 2014
Sponsored by, developer of Augmentext

OntoText Expands into North America with Strategic Hires

December 3, 2014

The article titled Semantic Technology Provider Ontotext Announces Strategic Hires for Ontotext USA on PRWeb discusses the expansion of Ontotext in North America. Tony Agresta, Brad Bogle and Tom Endyke joined Ontotext, as Senior VP of Worldwide Sales, Director of Marketing and Director of Solutions Architecture, respectively. Ontotext, the semantic search and text-mining leader has laid out several main focuses for the near future, including the growth of worldwide marketing efforts and the development of relationships. The article quotes Tony Agresta on Ontotext’s product development,

“Our flagship product, GraphDB™ (formerly OWLIM) has been deployed across the globe and is widely known as a highly scalable enterprise RDF triplestore… But what makes Ontotext truly unique are three other essential elements: 1) a full complement of semantic enrichment, integration, curation and authoring tools that extend our platform approach, 2) a large critical mass of semantic engineers, professional services and support teams that represent the most experienced professionals in the world and 3) S4, the Self Service Semantic Suite.”

Ontotext has provided semantic solutions for such companies as BBC, AstraZeneca, John Willey & Sons, and The British Museum. Their recent expansion efforts in North America are an attempt to reach more semantic technology users in this continent.

Chelsea Kerwin, December 03, 2014

Sponsored by, developer of Augmentext

The Sound of Ontopia Silence

November 25, 2014

Ontopia has been silent since August 1, 2013. Prior to that outdated update, Ontopia used to share news three or four times a year. Ontopia was developed as a community for open source tools for building, maintaining, and deploying topic maps-based applications. Topic maps are knowledge structures that directly connect information to a source. The process is also are also called information mapping or mind mapping, which is a concept that has been played around with by many develops. An old Mashable article has a list: “Twenty Four Essential Mind Mapping And Brainstorming Tools.”

Perusing the Ontopia Web page leaves it in the throws of Web 1.0 and with only some features that could pass as a modern Web site. Even the product’s description, in all its simplicity, is dated:

“Ontopia is a set of tools which contains everything you need to build a full Topic Maps-based application. Using Ontopia you can design your ontology, populate the topic map manually and/or automatically, build the user interface, show graphical visualizations of the topic map, and much more.

The core of Ontopia is the engine, which stores and maintains the topic maps, and has an extensive Java API. On top of it are built a number of additional components, as shown in the diagram below. More information about these components can be found on the right.

Ontopia is 100% Java, and runs on any operating system which has Java 1.5. It is fully open source and can be used without any restrictions beyond those in the Apache 2.0 license.”

The last time Ontopia updated, they wrote a post about how version 5.3.0 was just released and the details were available on the wiki. Has Ontopia been in the sequestered in a closet working on the latest version or has it gained abandoned open source project?

Whitney Grace, November 25, 2014
Sponsored by, developer of Augmentext

Microsoft Delve A Useful Spy

October 16, 2014

Microsoft is adding a new big data piece to its Office 365 lineup. And in a bit of a change of direction for the company, Microsoft has sought to make this element aesthetically pleasing as it points out patterns of likes and dislikes. Read more about Microsoft Delve in the InfoWorld article, “Microsoft’s Delve: The Office 365 Spy You Just Might Love.”

The article says:

“Microsoft’s Delve is an intriguing new offering for Office 365 business customers. Previously known as Oslo, Delve brings a concierge, Instragram-like pulse to business environments, as curated by Office Graph, sophisticated machine-learning technology that maps relationships between people, content, and activity across Office 365 accounts. Delve pulls content from within your organization’s OneDrive, SharePoint, and Yammer accounts, serving it up to users in a card-based interface reminiscent of Pinterest.”

The verdict is still out as to how helpful the product will really be in the business environment. It does behave without existing permissions, only showing users that which they are granted permission to see. Stephen E. Arnold is a longtime leader in search and reports on the latest news in his SharePoint feed. Since Delve may have helpful implications for SharePoint, keep an eye on for all the latest tips and tricks.

Emily Rae Aldridge, October 16, 2014

Microsoft Dives into End User Insights with Delve

October 14, 2014

Delve is a new offering from Microsoft which allows for integrated content all in one place, which hopefully facilitates discovery of helpful information. Read more in the Forbes article, “Microsoft Delivers End User Insights With Delve.”

The article begins:

“Big data is an awesome term but, frankly, it’s something that is hard for most people to grasp. This is in part due to the fact that there aren’t many particularly good examples of big data being presented to end users in a way which is simple and which extend an existing offering. Microsoft Delve is one such offering, and one which front and centre shows the value to be gained from big data.”

Overall, Delve is viewed as a useful tool, and one that looks pretty cool at the same time. It will take a bit more time to see what the final verdict is in terms of usefulness, particularly for Microsoft users who have already poured a lot of energy into their SharePoint implementation. This may be a helpful add-on. Stay tuned to the SharePoint feed on Stephen E. Arnold is a long time expert in search and reports on SharePoint news, tips, and tricks, that may be helpful for your organization.

Emily Rae Aldridge, October 14, 2014

Turn to Algorithms When Even Skimming Is Too Much Work

October 2, 2014

Shortcut specialists take heart: automatic summarization tools now abound, and MakeUseOf reviews a few in its piece, “Too Lazy to Skim? Get the Gist with These Top 3 Summarization Tools.” Who has time to actually read nuanced articles in our sound-bite-driven culture? Reporter Jessica Coccimiglio describes the method behind her evaluations:

I tested each online summarizer tool by summarizing Vox’s 1700 word article arguing why cyclists should be able to roll through stop signs and ride through red lights (aka the Idaho Stop). I chose this article because it is highly structured, presents an argument, is not technical, and has the potential to affect the daily lives of people in a wide variety of countries (like MakeUseOf’s international audience).

There are a few things common to good summaries:

*All the critical pieces of logic are included for an argument to make sense.

*Prevent information overload. Main ideas are favoured over details.

*Each sentence should make a unique point, not reiterate other points.

Coccimiglio uses that scofflaw-cyclist article to put her top three choices, Tools4noobs’ Online Summarize Tool, SMMRY, and Automatic Text Summarizer, through their paces. Of those, she seems to prefer Automatic Text Summarizer. Though she likes some of the features at SMMRY, she couldn’t get all of them to work at the time of her writing; she did, however, like the quality of the summary itself. Sadly, the write-up has little good to say about Tools4noobs’ offering.

Coccimiglio goes on to briefly mention three other tools the she tried, none of which met her standards: Free Summarizer, Text Compactor, and Summarize This. She notes that, should readers dislike such tools, they could try speed-reading to move through the copious amount of material to be found online. She hopes, though, that her audience will read her publication’s articles in full. I can sympathize.

Cynthia Murrell, October 02, 2014

Sponsored by, developer of Augmentext

Spy Tools for Investors

September 26, 2014

Never let it be said that financiers don’t leverage all the useful technology they can find. The Silicon Valley Business Journal reports that “Addepar’s Palantir Veterans Use Spy Tools to Map Investment Risk.” Hmm, I wonder whether the company will want to work the phrase “spy tools” into its advertising. Writer Jason McCormick, citing a New York Times article, summarizes:

“Addepar’s software, which launched five years ago, maps investors’ holdings to determine risk and portfolio sustainability. The company, whose leadership did turns at Palantir Technologies, last year raised significant capital to bring its big-data platform to market.

The company was founded by Palantir veteran Jason Mirra and Joe Lonsdale, who was a co-founder at Palantir. Addepar’s current CEO, Eric Poirier, also worked at Palantir.

The Times reported that Addepar’s users include family offices, banks and wealth managers, such as Iconiq Capital, which oversees a part of Mark Zuckerberg’s portfolio.”

McCormick goes on to point out that Addepar’s services can run from $50,000 to “well over” $1 million, depending on the amount of data involved. These companies must be pretty convinced of Addepar’s abilities.

Much is (rightly) made of Addepar’s roots in Palantir, an outfit we’ve been following with interest (though I’d like to add to the description above the fact that CEO Poirier also spent time at the financial powerhouse Lehman Brothers.) I think it interesting, though, that the team pulled in a former Oracle executive, who happens to have experience leading a private equity firm’s software investing team, to be COO: Karen White. So far, that seems to have been a wise choice.

Cynthia Murrell, September 26, 2014

Sponsored by, developer of Augmentext

Scrape the Content

July 17, 2014

What is artoo.js? It borrows the name for everyone’s favorite Star Wars droid that speaks in beeps. What it does is completely different. It is a piece of JavaScript code that runs on your browser’s console and provides you with scrapping utilities. This is a fine example of what happens when a Star Wars fan combines their computer savvy with their entertainment preference.

While the developer’s geek creed is established, does this make it a good tool? Let us study the features: data download scraped methods, Web crawls, scrapes any Web page, downloads instructions, JQuery is programmed in. Not bad, but why use artoo.js?

“Using browsers as scraping platforms comes with a lot of advantages:

• • Fast coding: You can prototype your code live thanks to JavaScript browsers’ REPL and peruse the DOM with tools specifically built for web development.

• • No more authentication issues: No longer need to deploy clever solutions to enable your spiders to authenticate on the website you intent to scrape. You are already authenticated on your browser as a human being.

Tools for non-devs: You can easily design tools for non-dev people. One could easily build an application with a UI on top of artoo.js. Moreover, it gives you the possibility to create bookmarklets on the fly to execute your personnal scripts.”

We are sold! It offers more features than the average scraper and it makes the hob easier. This is the scrape utility you are looking for.

Whitney Grace, July 17, 2014

Sponsored by, developer of Augmentext

TextTeaser Goes Open Source

July 16, 2014

If you are looking for an auto-summarization tool, TechCrunch says “Auto-Summarization Tool TextTeaser Relaunches As Open Source Code.” Joe Balbin is the creator of TextTeaser and he added it to GitHub after experiencing scalability issues in the API. Balbin recoded the program and the process is now faster. Developers have two plan options: one is $12 for ever 1000 articles summarized, while the enterprise plan is $250/month and comes with a dedicated server to store the article source.

“ ‘In this TextTeaser, you can train your own summarizer,’ Balbin explains. ‘You can provide the category and source of the article that will be used to improve the quality of the summaries. In the future, users might also have the ability to provide what keyword is important and what is not.’ ”

TextTeaser is used in reader apps, such as Gist. Balbin hopes to optimize the program for medical, financial, and legal documents.

TextTeaser sounds like it makes reading faster. The code is a valuable tool. We will stay tuned to see how else it is used.

Whitney Grace, July 16, 2014

Sponsored by, developer of Augmentext

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