Contexual Search and the Open Source Community

by Ben Ocean <beno(at)>

 Date:  Wed, 03 May 2000 12:03:30 -0700
 To:  hwg-techniques(at)
  todo: View Thread, Original
Hi, all;
Just got back from a breakfast seminar hosted by Autonomy. They appear to 
have gone one step beyond XML. They create mathematical logarithms based on 
how *important words and phrases* (important being defined by the user, or 
by documents inputted as *important*), how these words are found grouped in 
documents. Thus, if *German* and *dog* are used together, their program 
would anticipate *shepherd* would be in context. Thus, it's different from 
a regular keyword search: it uses mathematical logic.

Okay, my question. Great concept: one I would imagine is perfectly suited 
for the Open Source Community. Why? There's money to be made, smaller 
businesses can profit from what is now only available to Fortune 2000 
businesses, and, quite frankly, our freedom is at stake, because that's a 
powerful amount of information that can be used for our good, or otherwise. 
So, has anybody in the Open Source Community tackled this one yet? TIA,

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