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Kasun Indrasiri

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    Department of CSE
    University of Moratuwa,
    Sri Lanka

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Information retrieval (IR) Systems: Enterprise and Web Search

Posted by kasun04 on July 27, 2008

I heard many people now tends to talk about a new era of computer and information technology called Information age (Some may call it Digital or Wireless age according to his preferences). So, It’s clear that in the

present world ‘information’ (digitally represented) becomes the master and we all relaying on it.

When it comes to information, gathering and storing information is almost done up to the perfection owing to modern development of computer science. But the ‘information retrieval’ is still a challenge to the ICT world.

The area of computer science dealing with searching and processing collections of multimedia documents is known as Information Retrieval (IR). The IR systems solve the effective storing and querying of textual (or multimedia) documents.

The systems can be used for web pages searching in the Internet or a specified collection of documents are often referring to as ‘Search Engines’.

More precisely “Googling” is more or less the most popular way of information retrieval mechanism from the world’s largest collection of multimedia and textual document collection; the World Wide Web. Apart from Google, there are several information retrieval systems yet to become famous like Yahoo, Live Search etc.

Web Search Engine are quite popular but the modern business models relying on much more customizable IR system that you can plug various different collections of data to the IR system. For example a company may want to use the web, a pre-defined set of documents and some other third part IR retrieval system to be used as the company data repository to the company IR system. This is where the ‘Enterprise Search Engines’ come in to play.

Currently world’s most famous and reputed Enterprise Search Platform is the FAST Search and Transfer (now owns by Microsoft Cooperation) which is able to beat the giant’s (Google’s) Enterprise Search Platform. By the way FAST do support crawling through the internet but as a web search engine FAST is no way near Google.

So, its clear that both Google and FAST are going on two different path while both of them are the predominant leaders in each streams (web & enterprise search).

Information Retrieval use various different technologies to store and retrieve information and web search and enterprise search uses different strategies in their own methodology.

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