RealTime IT News

Better Search With Remix Clustering?

Vivisimo has released Remix, a new twist to the clustering search technology used in its Clusty search engine.

Clusty.com is Vivisomo's public, technology showcase site. The company makes most of its revenue from Velocity 6.0, its enterprise search platform based on the same clustering technology as the public site, including Remix.

Clustering is at the heart of what Vivisomo, a Carnegie Mellon spin-off, does. Search results from a variety of sources (Google, Yahoo, etc.) are automatically organized into topical folders for a quick look at related groupings or clusters.

For example, a search on "Barack Obama" presents a list of the expected campaign Web sites and articles; but Clusty generates a separate list to the left of the page of "Clusters" that include such headings as "Clinton", "Photos", "Biography" and "Hawaii (the Presidential hopeful was born in the Aloha State).

A new "Remix" button lets you search among the clusters for new groupings. The system automatically ignores results it's already given. In the Obama example, hitting Remix generates new clusters including: "Hillary" and "Chicago." You can keep hitting Remix for additional new clusters from the lengthy list of original results brought to the fore.

"The basic end user value is that you get quick access to more than the top 10 search results and clusters," Raul Valdes-Perez, CEO of Vivisimo, told InternetNews.com. "We call it Clustering 2.0, the first real advance in search clustering since we launched in 2000. If you just want the population of Argentina, this isn't for you. But if you want to dig deeper into a topic, Remix makes it a lot easier."

For enterprise customers, Velocity acts as a cross-repository search tool with security and access tools so, for example, you can't search through someone else's e-mail or other areas requiring authorization. A search for potential partners for a new product launch might span your company's Intranet, your own e-mail, shared folders and the company's customer relationship management (CRM) system.

Enterprise search has gained a much higher profile lately with Microsoft's announcement earlier this month that it plans to buy FAST for $1.2 billion. Valdes-Perez said the deal validates the importance of enterprise search.

"It proves that prior claims that lower-end products were good enough for business were false. If they were, Microsoft could have used its own lower-end offering and not bought FAST," he said. "As a CEO I want to know I can do cross-repository searches with security; the low-end search products aren't up to the job."

Upstart EarthFrisk.org launched what it calls the first "Meta-Social- Hybrid Search Engine" earlier this month. Earthfrisk draws on a number of different sources for its results including Clusty.