Wednesday, February 20, 2008

One Box for an Enterprise Search

One of the most common requests I get for a knowledge management project is to give them a search like "The Google." They want one simple box that give them their answer.

As anyone who has looked at enterprise search has seen, people are often asking very different questions and expecting very different answers. For example, if you are searching for a phone number for a fellow employee, you would expect a very different view of the search results than if you were looking for that same name in the document collection. There are certainly lots of challenges to combining the plethora of searches inside the enterprise into one single search box.

Can one simple box deliver such different results?

It turns out Google answered that question with their "onebox" search results. " In addition to providing easy access to billions of web pages, Google has many special features to help you to find exactly what you're looking for."

If you enter a movie name, the results show movie listings and reviews:

If you enter an address, you get a map:

Google has a list of their features here: Google Search Features.

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