Posts

Improve defect reporting with four simply steps

Over the past few years, my brother John and I have worked with hundreds of clients to implement what is now being called " Insight Engines ".  Through this we've created a repeatable process for the implementation phase of the technology and through implementing with so many organizations have come across an interesting phenomenon: Testers articulate defects very poorly  This is often expressed in some manner frustration when they are then asked for qualification and clarification.  Typically, the author of the defect ticket will respond with: You want me to update the ticket? But I put everything there! Did you read the ticket? We just need this fixed. Which is the defense of some ticket created with a subject like: Incremental crawling doesn't work Relevancy sucks Documents are missing Facet counts are wrong Which has some summary reiterating the subject in a board manner like Incremental crawling not turned on, please fix Search terms a

2018 Move For The Kids

On May 20th, I'll be running to support the Lurie Children's Hospital.   Our daughter was born with a hole in her heart and through our experience with the numerous visits to hospitals, surgery and follow up appointments we know the challenges that many  families   face  and the importance of the hospital to the community here in Chicago and across the country. We are just o ne of the nearly 200,000 patients that are treated at Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago each year. Support my efforts for the 2018 Move for the Kids 5K Walk/Run by making a gift today. Every dollar raised means a brighter and healthier future for our children. Please consider making a donation to support my run or join the Moving For Sophia Team! A few small donations add up.  Here are just a few ways your donations could help: $35  can provide a comfort item for a premature infant to ensure the smallest and most fragile babies heal and grow faster. $60  can help provide inpatient ente

Coveo adds New Form Authentication Option for Web/Sitemap

Image
When we use to work on the Google Search Appliance, one of the most difficult issues was getting the crawler through the web form.  It was a black art that I perfected and wrote about.  (you'll have to goto the internet way back machine to look that up) Ultimately, Google provide this feature after they wound down the  product. Wait no more...Coveo has added it as well! When creating a Web or Sitemap source, you now have two form authentication options:  Manual form authentication  and  Automatic form authentication . While the  Manual form authentication  option requires you to provide the form input names and values, the  Automatic form authentication  option detects these inputs automatically.

What's wrong with Enterprise Search RFPs and how to fix them

John Cizmar posted an article to Linkedin discussing how RFPs could be altered to be more effective.    I definitely share his view point.  At MC+A, we've been promoting a business case centered approach to purchasing insight engines.  Because of the sudden end of life for the Google Search Appliance, this has been amplified. Too often the RFP and the processes are not executed to the goal that they are intended for.  This article will dive into the background, the problems and how to fix them. What is a RFP? By definition, a RFP is a Request For Proposal.  A definition for a proposal can be: A plan or suggestion, especially a formal or written one, put forward for consideration or discussion by others. The keyword in that definition is "plan".  By asking for a proposal, it's implied that you are asking for a plan.  Likewise, it's also implied that you have a general idea of the funding requirements or can get the necessary funding to execute an agreed p

February ends with a bang for enterprise search / insight engines

The last week or so of February has been very exciting in the world of Enterprise Search.  This week, we've seen the following announcements: Lucidworks announced - Fusion 4 Elastic announced open sourcing much of their X-Pack among a ton of other features at their annual conference Coveo announced a new AI powered search for Microsoft Dynamics Attivio announced a new Analytics package for their Platform Lucidworks Fusion 4.0 The biggest announcement of those has to be the 4.0 announcement from Lucidworks.  It's been about a year since the last major release from Fusion and there have been many exciting things happening at Lucidworks like the acquisition of Twigkit.  We are starting to see how that product is being folded into the product roadmap of the company.  Other items of note is the improvements to Fusion AI and the A/B testing component.  With the new release, you are also getting a refresh to Apache Solr 7.2.1 and Spark 2.3. Elastic X-Pack Open Sourced

3 Reasons to Start Your Google Search Appliance Replacement Project - Today

Every year, while I know winter comes, I am always somewhat taken back by its inevitable arrival.  So too is true of the Google Search Appliance (GSA) wind down.  The enviable wind down has begun, winter has arrived. Given more than two years to find an alternative solution, the time to moved to a new platform is now.  Waiting until your GSA license later this year puts you at risk for the following: 1 - Unknown Unknowns Even the simplest project can have unknown issues come up.  Some of these can be as simple as when the Change Management Board meets.  These can stretch out your project and delay your eventual cut over. Additionally, there typically is more planning required to implement a replacement technology.  What could be done on the GSA can take factors time more.  Relevancy typically doesn't not work as well out of the box but will after some simply tuning is completed.  Not having experience with the platform means you should consider that into your schedule. We&

January Release Of Coveo Cloud Highlights

Image
I was pleasantly surprised when I returned from my PTO and reviewed the most recent update to the Coveo Cloud Platform.  Coveo released an update to their cloud platform on Jan 17th.  You can find details of the release here .  One that we've found useful already at MC+A is the "Apply New and Customized Extensions on Source Items".  Previously attaching extensions to sources required API calls which we could quickly do in something like postman, but this is a little cleaner of an approach. This can be found on the edit menu of sources.  When clicked you get a menu item similar to what's shown below. The details for the configuration of applying  an extension to a source can be found here . Why are extensions important? Insight engines take source data and ingest it.  The vast amount of information that exists in the world is unstructured so there are generally requirements to transform this data prior to ingesting it.  We've recently