Activate 2018 day 2 – AI and Search in Montreal

I've already written about Day 1 of Lucidworks' Activate conference; the second day started with a keynote on 'moral code', ethics & AI which unfortunately I missed, but a colleague reported that it was very encouraging to see topics such as diversity and inclusion raised in a keynote talk. Note that videos of some of the talks is starting to appear on Continue reading

Activate 2018 day 1 – AI and Search in Montreal

Activate is the successor to the Lucene/Solr Revolution conference that our partner Lucidworks runs every Autumn and was held this year in Montreal, Canada. After running a successful Lucene Hackday on the Monday before the conference, we joined hundreds of others to hear Will Hayes, the CEO of Lucidworks, Continue reading

Lucene Hackdays in London & Montreal

We ran a couple of Lucene Hackdays over the last couple of weeks: a chance to get together with other people working on open source search, learn from each other and to try and improve both Lucene and associated software. Our first Hackday was in London, hosted by Mimecast at their offices near Moorgate...Continue reading

Three weeks of search events this October from Flax

Flax has always been very active at conferences and events - we enjoy meeting people to talk about search! With much of our consultancy work being carried out remotely these days, attending events is a great way to catch up in person with our clients, colleagues and peers and to learn from others about what works (and what doesn't) when building cutting-edge search solutions. I'm thus very glad to announce that we're running three search events this coming October. Earlier in the year I atten...Continue reading

Defining relevance engineering, part 1: the background

Relevance Engineering is a relatively new concept but companies such as Flax and our partners Open Source Connections have been carrying out relevance engineering for many years. So what is a relevance engineer and what do they do? In this series of blog posts I'll try to explain what I see as a new, emerging and important profession. ...Continue reading

London Lucene/Solr Meetup – Relevance tuning for Elsevier’s Datasearch & harvesting data from PDFs

Elsevier were our kind hosts for the latest London Lucene/Solr Meetup and also provided the first speaker, Peter Cotroneo. Peter spoke about their DataSearch project, a search engine for scientific data. After describing how most other data search engines only index and rank results using metadata,...Continue reading

Haystack, the relevance conference – birth of a new profession?

I've just returned from Charlottesville, Virginia and the Haystack search relevance conference hosted by our partners Open Source Connections. The venues were their own office and the Random Row brewery next door - added once they realised that the event had outgrown its humble beginnings as a small, informal event for maybe 50 people into a professional conference for over twice that number with attendees from as far afield as the...Continue reading

When even the commercial vendors are using it, has open source search won?

There have been some interesting announcements recently which may point to an increasing realisation amongst commercial search firms that an open source model is an essential advantage in today's search market. Coveo have announced that their enterprise search engine can run on an Elasticsearch core, an interesting move for a previously decidedly closed source company. BA Insight, who have previou...Continue reading

London Lucene/Solr Meetup – Java 9 & 1 Beeelion Documents with Alfresco

This time Pivotal were our kind hosts for the London Lucene/Solr Meetup, providing a range of goodies including some frankly enormous pizzas - thanks Costas and colleagues, we couldn't have done it without you! Our first talk was from Uwe Schindler, Lucene committer, who started with...Continue reading