Archive for August, 2011

August 16, 2011

Google Labs for Enterprise Search

Labs logo

Google Labs

Google Enterprise Search now has a lab of its own ! Actually, I first noticed this in February 2011, but just got around to writing about it. I was too busy collecting cool images of Google Enterprise hardware to put together a post.

What does Google Enterprise Labs offer?

Recall that Google Enterprise refers to these products:

  1. the Google Search Appliance (GSA)
  2. Google Commerce Search for larger online businesses
  3. Google Intranet search, and
  4. the Google Mini, a less powerful, blue-colored version of the yellow GSA.
GSA connector

GSA connector

Google Enterprise Labs offers many enhancements such as open source connectors to improve GSA connectivity with file systems, databases or SalesForce.com documents. Cross-language Enterprise Search is an interesting project too.

GSA enabled for open search also caught my attention. OpenSearch is a collaborative venture led by Amazon, and includes the major search engines. Its goal is to set up common standards for internet search. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of activity at the moment, but that’s just my personal impression. Google gives this description (via the Enterprise Labs page that goes on to describe how to implement open search with browser integration):

OpenSearch is a collection of simple formats for the sharing of search results. OpenSearch… format can be used to describe a search engine so that it can be used by search client applications. Such search client applications include all major browsers.

In other words, you can send search queries right from your browser (Firefox, Internet Explorer or Google Chrome), after registering your GSA as a search provider.

GSA for Enterprise

GSA and Open Search

The same sort of browser integration is possible for Intranet Search (with Windows 7):

If your Intranet content e.g. Windows file shares or SharePoint, have been indexed by a GSA, all Windows clients will be able to submit search queries from Windows Explorer.

Be careful, though, as Secure Search cannot be used from within Windows Explorer.

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