The Solr distros are coming

Open Source Search is gaining more and more traction. First you had Lucene (2001), giving great search for programmers. Then we got Solr (2006) making search accessible for non programmers, but a certain level of expertise is still needed. And then came Constellio, an open source (GPL) enterprise search distribution (distro) built on Solr, adding a slick GUI, connector and crawling support and more.

Say again. A Solr distro?

I call it “distro” because I like to compare the evolution to what we have seen in GNU/Linux. First there was the Linux core. Then there was the GNU tools that made Linux so much more usable but still only for engineers comfortable with the command line. And last, companies like RedHat and Suse built complete distros including modern GUI, ready-to use tools such as OpenOffice, Thunderbird and more. Without these distros, Linux would just have been a “core” leaving to the user to add the extra sugar.

FAST to abandon Linux and Unix

In a recent blog post by CTO Bjørn Olstad, referenced by CNet, Beyond Search and Norwegian digi.no today, FAST announces that ESP 5.3 is the last version of their Enterprise Search Platform to run on Linux or Unix.

As a part of that planning process, we have decided that in order to deliver more innovation per release in the future, the 2010 products will be the last to include a search core that runs on Linux and UNIX.

Test driving Chrome OS

chrome_logo_may09After all the buzz about Chrome OS being open-sourced as “Chromium OS”, I had to give it a ride.

I could have compiled the source from scratch, but a quick search gave this page from Gdgt providing a VMWare image of a complete install of Chrome OS. So I created a new virtual machine in VMWare Fusion on my MacBook, selected “Other Linux 2.6.x kernel” as OS type and poited it to the .vmdk disk image. See Figure 1 for how that looks.

Google competes with iTunes

Picture 2Google has just integrated music search, called “Google Discover Music“, into its search results – in US only so far. Partnering up with imeem, lala, myspace (iLike), Pandora, Rhapsody as well as the major music record labels, Google is striving to help users find and listen to music in just a few clicks. As much as 2 out of the top-10 searches are music related, which really suggests that many people are looking for music at Google.