Monday, December 12, 2005

Training Wheels Are Off!

OK, the BFD is unleashed on the world now and I'm happy to spill the beans.

For the longest time (has it really been two years in the making?) we've been working on pitching, justifying and building out a search engine for a nearly one million document large repository of data.

It's hosted on Apple gear. Is built entirely in Java. Powered by Lucene. And runs in JBoss and is WICKED cool. is the subscriber address. In all liklihood you'll be blocked unless you've paid for full-access (you'll know if you did).

However, is the open access site. This one will let you search about 70,000 or so articles dating back to 1917 and purchase any or all of them at $10 a pop.

Now, while this might be one of those GROOOOAANNNN kind of things to you I have to tell you I have a whole new appreciation for "search" as an application. IT AIN'T EASY SISTA! I evaluated a TON of solutions out there: Apple's Spotlight; SearchBlox (which is still awesome); and a score of others... Lucene kept coming back as the one to beat (open source, platform agnostic, portable, scaleable...)

Hats off to two EXTREMELY fine geniuses: Fred Toth and Jay Allen Hill. They are truly marvelous, dedicated, talented professionals who brought their creative problem solving skills to bear on some pretty funky stuff and pulled off programming miracles on a routine basis. We could not do this project without their involvement. There's more to do and I hope they'll stick with us through the next iterations. They're both a pleasure to work with.

Michael McDonald of Pinehurst Technologies... Thanks for the introductions to Fred on election day 2004. Time has flown!

My bosses here at the AAPG and Datapages. I really appreciate the trust you've placed in me to get this deal launched.

The folks at Petris Technologies who have hosted the searchable archives for the past many years. These guys did a great job and we'll be looking forward to the next business opportunity that bring us together.

My staff - Anne, Paula, Bev, Carol, Sandra and JingYao. Guys... there's no way this thing would have come together without your can-do attitude. I know the availability's been spotty for the past year (probably will be for another year). But, this deal is a testament to "hire people better than yourself" cliche. I have no worries because of each of you!

Last and MOST important - my family!
Michelle, Ian and Logan have put up with so much BS from me for the past two years I'm amazed I'm still married. I'm even more amazed there's a little girl on the way! ((When did THAT happen!?)) I see authors pour doting praise on their families for putting up with their project/profession. NOW I appreciate what that all means. It sure helps to be blessed with a bride who's understanding and encouraging. Also helps to have munchins who don't know any better! :)


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