New Westminster Archives Database Now Online

by Kathy Bryce Monday, June 06, 2011 9:05 AM

New Westminster is the oldest city in Western Canada with a long and rich history.   Andornot has been working with the City Archives for several years and is delighted that a search interface to selected archival records and photos is now available at http://archives.newwestcity.ca.  “This will be the first time in our city’s history that people with access to the Internet will be able to view our excellent photograph collection from either the comfort of their homes or any other location in the world,” says archivist Barry Dykes.  Read the complete press release here. Archives search results screenshot

Behind the scenes the Archives uses Inmagic DB/Text for SQL software plus a version of the Andornot Archives Starter Kit to manage their archival descriptions.  A subset of records in the database is then transferred to the public facing website outside the firewall.  

“We enjoyed working with Andornot and are very pleased with the search interface they developed for us.  The advice and suggestions we received along the way were essential to the completion of this project. For instance, they encouraged us to incorporate some of the latest social bookmaking tools. “  [Barry Dykes]

Please contact us for more information.

Solr and the Trend to Open Source Search

by Peter Tyrrell Thursday, June 02, 2011 11:06 AM

On Saturday I caught a cold. On Sunday, I caught a flight to San Francisco to attend Lucene Revolution - the biggest open source search conference on the planet – to catch up on the latest developments with Apache Lucene/Solr.

From the Solr project website:

“Solr is the popular, blazing fast open source enterprise search platform from the Apache Lucene project. Its major features include powerful full-text search, hit highlighting, faceted search, dynamic clustering, database integration, rich document (e.g., Word, PDF) handling, and geospatial search. Solr is highly scalable, providing distributed search and index replication, and it powers the search and navigation features of many of the world's largest internet sites.”

I was joined there by developers and representatives from AT&T, CareerBuilder.com, Corbis, Ebay, eHarmony, EMC, Etsy.com, HathiTrust, Healthwise, Intuit, Travelocity, Trulia, Twitter, Woot, and Yelp, to name a few. (Yes, I’m name dropping – just trying to appear cool here.)

I’ve been working with Solr for the better part of a year, and I thought it very impressive, but the conference blew my socks off in terms of what Solr can do. To think that the best-of-breed search performance in the world is open source! (Solr beats Google in overall search performance. No, I’m not exaggerating.)

Solr is a game-changer, there’s no doubt. No longer is open source just a freebie alternative, it is the go-to standard that is beating the pants off of proprietary search engines. I heard quite a few stories of prominent household-name enterprises switching to Solr and reducing costs while simultaneously vastly increasing their capabilities and performance. 

Happily, Solr not only scales up to the largest data collections ever created by our species, but also down to the relatively modest needs of the rest of us. It democratizes search. A kid making a website in his parent’s basement can utilize the same cutting-edge search features as a multinational corporation, and that’s not just convenient, it’s necessary, because search is vital now to every level of our interaction with information.

I can’t wait to apply what I learned at the conference back at El Rancho Andornot. Also, I need to keep ahead of that kid in the basement.

Tags: Solr

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