FASTforward: Search Solutions

Jørn Ellefsen, CEO of Comperio, spoke about customer-driven innovation in search solutions. Comperio creates custom solutions based on the FAST platform, as well as providing a framework that I saw in yesterday’s session on enterprise mashups. Although they work mostly with customers in their Scandinavian home base, they’ve done some significant projects around the world.

This session was done in a semi-panel format moderated by a FAST executive, and Ellefsen was joined partway through by his colleague Stefan Sveen, who I saw in the mashup session yesterday, and and Jan Staff of SPH Search, a local search initiative for Singapore Press Holdings that will provide information and news about Singapore and its people and businesses for locals and visitors. Staff talked about how they were able to focus more energy on the content through the use of the Comperio Front framework, which simplifies access to the FAST platform. Because of the blend of languages used in Singapore, there are some specific search challenges: there are specific English terms, for example, that mean quite different things in Singapore than they do in other English-speaking locations.

Sveen gave a repeat of the demonstration that I saw yesterday, showing how the standard out of the box FAST interface that includes a variety of search navigation/filtering techniques, including the metadata taxonomy and four different “last update” dates. A simple customization using the Comperio Front framework combined the four date filters into a single control, simplifying the user interface. A second, more complex customization dynamically segmented the query search results to show a specialized results tab specifically with food-related results as well as the general search results.

Comperio also provides some productized solutions for less conventional search, such as their Music Search application for searching digital music: it creates a catalog of the digital music assets based on genre, mood and release decade, where search results include 30-second samples and “find similar” capabilities.

Leave a Reply