Tag Archive 'search'

Feb 11 2009

Microsoft Enterprise Search Roadmap

Published by under .NET,Programming,Software

When I first started developing with SharePoint in June last year the last thing that was on my mind was Enterprise Search.  I had considered it the sort of technology that you just plug in a magic box and it just did all the work for you.

Recently, however, I have been involved in developing a customised search solution using Microsoft Office SharePoint Server (MOSS) to allow a client to search client and non-client related documentation within their organisation.   What I rapidly discovered is that enterprise search is not a plug-and-play affair.  A lot of thought needs to go into the meta data that is used to define the taxonomy of the data (in this documents) and also how users are going to interact with search and how to make sure they get the information they need.

I have also recently been on a training course at FAST Search,which was acquired by Microsoft in April 2008.  The course was both an introduction to the structure of FAST ESP and also an in-depth look into customising the internal, both feeding content into the indexing engine of FAST ESP and building a rich user experience for getting content from the FATS ESP search engine.

The two activities have really awaken me to how powerfull enterprise search can be in empowering users to find information which previously they either may not have know how to access or, more likely, simply hadn’t known existed.  Whilst I was learning about FAST Search, it was generally anticipated that it would be included with the next generation of MOSS.  Today that was confirmed at FASTForward ’09 when Microsoft announced its roadmap for enterprise search which has two initial streams, firstly FAST Search for Internet Business which is mainly aimed at internet retail businesses – like you’d use to find products on Amazon.  The second, and more interesting for me, stream is FAST Search for SharePoint, which will integrate FAST Search more closely with SharePoint and would be used for the type of internal information discovery that I have been working on recently.

Mark Harrisson also noted on his blog that Microsoft is going to be offering ESP for SharePoint immediately which is

a special offering that allows customers to purchase high-end search capabilities today, with a defined licensing path to FAST Search for SharePoint when it becomes available.

I haven’t been able to find out more information about ESP for SharePoint, but it certainly looks like it could be an interesting product to get hold of.  I the mean time I’m keen to continue working with MOSS Enterprise Search and have just the right project lined up to flex my new found love of search on.

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Jul 10 2008

SharePoint Link List – Part 3

Published by under Programming,Technology

These are a selection of list of links that I acquired on a recent SharePoint developer course with Patrick Tisseghem of U2U.  This is part 3 of a 4 part series:

Workflow

Windows Workflow Foundation
http://netfx3.com/content/WFHome.aspx
An introduction and kick-off point for developers wanting to get started with Workflow Foundation.

Custom Workflow Activities
http://codeplex.com/SPDActivities
A set of handy SharePoint workflow activities for people that don’t want to get their hands dirty creating their own custom workflow activities.

Search

Microsoft search services
http://www.microsoft.com/enterprisesearch/products.aspx
Information on the Microsoft Search Server family of products.  Aimed more at decision makers than developers.

MOSS Faceted Search AddOn
http://www.codeplex.com/FacetedSearch
A most excellent add-on for the MOSS search system.  Allows for quick and easy refining of search criteria.

Silverlight

Silverlight for Sharepoint BluePrints
http://www.codeplex.com/sl4sp
Demonstrations of how Silverlight can be used with SharePoint.

Vertigo – FamilyShow
http://www.vertigo.com/familyshow.aspx
Example of using Silverlight in SharePoint

Deep Zoom Composer
http://blogs.msdn.com/expression/archive/tags/Deep+Zoom+Composer/default.aspx
Nothing to do with SharePoint but a very cool application.  Useful if you want to embed a Deep-Zoom show in SharePoint ;)

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