Inktomi boosts search with XML

Search vendor Inktomi is poised to drive its search technology into the heart of enterprise applications, tapping XML to extract...

Search vendor Inktomi is poised to drive its search technology into the heart of enterprise applications, tapping XML to extract data from structured and semi-structured data buried in corporate systems.

This week the company rolled out the Inktomi Search Toolkit, designed to be embedded into applications such as content management, CRM (customer relationship management), ERP (enterprise resource planning), portals, and commerce systems.

Inktomi has used XML in combination with the emerging W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) standard XQuery to dig into the structured and semi-structured content that proliferates in applications.

"Most corporate repositories have so much information, if you start looking for stuff you get overwhelmed easily," said Bill Lange, senior analyst at Delphi Consulting Group.

Existing application search tools fall short because they attempt to use unstructured information retrieval designed for intranets or relational database search, which does not deal well with textual content, said Rahul Lahiri, director of product management at Inktomi.

By tapping XQuery - a query language for XML - in combination with XML, Inktomi's Search Toolkit merges traditional keyword search with sophisticated tools for powerful structured queries typically found in relational databases.

"The product we built is very XML-focused. XML is becoming the defacto standard for data presentation in the enterprise," he said. "XML allows you to evolve the data structure and it adds a tremendous amount of flexibility."

Furthermore, XML support paves the road for forthcoming Web services, which promise to integrate independent search silos in various applications and content repositories.

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