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3 posts from October 2011

October 25, 2011

What search platform is best? Workshop at KMWorld

Next week in Washington DC, InfoToday runs their Fall enterprise search conferences - KM World, Enterprise Search Summit, SharePoint Symposium, and Taxonomy Boot Camp.. whew! Monday - Halloween Day! - I am giving a workshop at the conferences with the somewhat vague title 'Enterprise Search Technologies'.

What I'll be talking about is an overview of the platform vendors, with some detail on strengths and weaknesses of the vendors; and a drill down into what you need to do before you call the vendors (if you value your time).

You can still sign up for the workshop for $295US or the entire conference for a bit more; see you in DC in a week!


October 18, 2011

Oracle buys Endeca: Is it really just about search?

Is acquiring Endeca 'sour grapes' after losing out on Autonomy? I don't think so. Oracle has had any number of generations of home grown search technology over the years, and all things considered the current Oracle Secure Enterprise Search isn't bad. On top of that, Oracle really just agreed to acquire InQuira in July, and many people think of InQuira as a search platform rather than as a question/answer system so great in customer support. 

We've long considered Endeca as the first really modern platform, created in the late 1990s when it was clear that search was more than just a box on a page. They were just about the first platform to have a fully integrated console that a business user can actually understand. They fit really where relevance means "the document/product matches the user's query, it's in stock, and has the highest profit margin for us - between Monday morning at 8AM UTC through 5PM Pacific time". All with an easy to use GIU.

Consider: Endeca is powered by a fully integrated GUI management console; IDOL is powered by command line tools and configuration files, driven by editors like 'vi'. Autonomy does have more GIU tools now; but they feel like more of an afterthought, lacking the polish and feel of a fully integrated product.

So it's not search that Oracle is picking up: it's the powerful eCommerce capabilities. For years, Endeca have been telling us how great an enterprise search platform it is, and yes, it is pretty cool. But the place it really fits, the place it really shines - and the place where most of its customers are - is in serving eCommerce.

So, viewed as an acquisition to strengthen Oracle's fit in the booming eCommerce market, it seems to me a bit more sense.

What do you think? Let us hear from you!




Oracle acquires Endeca

The trend that can trace its immediate roots back to when Microsoft acquired FAST and HP acquired Autonomy continues today as Oracle has announced it is acquiring privetely held Endeca. Forbes reports that Endeca has raised up to $70M; and in July reported its sales are running at $150M annually. Details have not yet been released. More to come on this as it develops.


Update: Oracle's slide presentation on the deal at http://bit.ly/qHNCeH