Funnelback

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Funnelback
Private
Industry Software
Founded Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia (December 20, 2005; 9 years ago (2005-12-20))
Headquarters Canberra, Australia
Area served
Worldwide
Key people
Dr. David Hawking, Brett Matson
Products
  • Funnelback Hosted
  • Funnelback Server for Web
  • Funnelback Server for Enterprise
  • Funnelback Platform
Number of employees
35
Subsidiaries United States, United Kingdom
Slogan Search like you've never seen it.
Website www.funnelback.com

Funnelback is both a search engine software product and the name of the company selling the technology. Funnelback software is typically deployed as a vertical search or enterprise search solution, and has been cited as suitable for search-based applications.[1]

Funnelback's headquarters and research and development is based in Canberra, with additional offices in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Hobart, Adelaide, London, New York, Wellington, Edinburgh and Szczecin.

The company's name is a portmanteau of two Australian spiders - the Funnel-web and Redback.

History[edit]

  • 2001
    • CSIRO sponsors P@noptic[2] research project, design and development headed by Dr. David Hawking[3]
    • First version of P@noptic released
  • 2005
    • December: Funnelback spun off from CSIRO ICT Centre [4] as Funnelback Pty. Ltd[5]
  • 2006
    • April: P@noptic product renamed Funnelback
    • October: Funnelback version 6.0 released
  • 2009
    • July: Funnelback acquired by Squiz[6]
    • August: Operations commence in United Kingdom as Funnelback UK Ltd.
  • 2012
    • February: Approved supplier to UK Government via G-Cloud[7]
  • 2015
    • Operations commence in United States as Funnelback Inc.

Clients[edit]

Government[edit]

Funnelback has been responsible for providing several whole-of-government search services including:  Australian Government,[8] Queensland Government (Australia), Australian Capital Territory Government (Australia), and portal search services for New South Wales Government (Australia) [9] and Tasmanian Government (Australia).

Releases[edit]

Major Funnelback product releases occur annually,[10] and are generally aligned with year numbers. Versions of Funnelback prior to 6.0 are regarded as P@noptic releases.

Funnelback Version 15 is scheduled for release in Q4 2015.

Technology[edit]

The core of the system is based around the proprietary Parallel Document Retrieval Engine (PADRE)[11] developed by the Australian National University and CSIRO to perform very fast data look-ups. Its relevancy ranking system uses a variant of the Okapi BM25[12] algorithm to rank document content and metadata. The company has also been granted patents for annotation index methods[13] (used for generating search result snippets) and search result sub-topic identification[14] (used in Funnelback's Contextual Navigation[15] system).

It has the ability to search a range of formats in addition to range of HTML files. These include PDF, Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, images, and XML. It also has the ability to connect to, and index databases. Adapters currently exist for MySQL and TRIM Context, and the design of the system allows users to create their own connectors should they not exist.

Funnelback Server software is designed for operation on Windows and Linux platforms.[16] Support for Solaris has been discontinued.[17]

Several open-source software packages are bundled with Funnelback,[18] including the Tika, Mahout and ManifoldCF projects from the Apache Software Foundation, used for filtering, recommendations and enterprise repository connectors, respectively.

Languages Used[edit]

Funnelback's codebase uses several programming languages:

Awards[edit]

(as P@noptic)

  • 2003 - Search Engine - Editor's Choice (Network Computing)[27]
  • 2004 - iAwards (AIIA): Innovation: eBusiness & Internet[28]

Industry Analysts' Reception[edit]

Ovum summarised the product as being able to "deliver highly relevant, context-aware results, based on a user's location, interests, profile, or browsing history, to create a truly personalized experience".[29] 451 Research Group noted the company's 30% revenue growth in 2010, primarily in the UK.[30] Gartner's Enterprise Search Magic Quadrant (2014) mentions Funnelback in passing,[31] but does not place it on the quadrant.

Availability[edit]

Funnelback software is currently provided as a Windows or Linux Installer software for installed customers or as a hosted service to subscribing customers, either through direct sales channels or Funnelback partners.

Previous Versions[edit]

Versions of Funnelback released prior to 2007 were available as 30-day trials, limited to 50,000 document indexes, supplied via CD-ROM or accessible via the Funnelback website. Trial versions are no longer available.

In 2010, a now-deprecated OEM version of Funnelback, branded as SquizSearch,[32] was bundled with Squiz's MySource Matrix product.

External Links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Grefenstette, Gregory; Wilber, Laura (2010). "Search-Based Applications: At the Confluence of Search and Database Technologies". Synthesis Lectures on Information Concepts, Retrieval, and Services 2 (1). doi:10.2200/S00320ED1V01Y201012ICR017. 
  2. ^ "P@NOPTIC Intranet Search". panopticsearch.com. Archived from the original on 24 January 2001. 
  3. ^ Stephen E Arnold. "Search Wizards Speak: David Hawking of Funnelback :: ArnoldIT". arnoldit.com. 
  4. ^ Computerworld Staff. "CSIRO spins off home-grown search engine". Computerworld. 
  5. ^ "Current details for ABN 34 116 105 296". business.gov.au. 
  6. ^ Rodney Gedda. "CSIRO sells Funnelback search engine". TechWorld. 
  7. ^ "Funnelback Approved as a Supplier for the G-Cloud; The New Framework of Cloud Service Providers for the UK Government". econsultancy.com. 
  8. ^ Tim Lohman. "AGIMO signs Funnelback for Govt search". PC Advisor. 
  9. ^ Hamish Barwick. "NSW Government dumps Google appliance for Funnelback". Computerworld. 
  10. ^ Funnelback. "Release notes". funnelback.com. 
  11. ^ Hawking, David (1994). "PADRE - a parallel document retrieval engine.". Proceedings of the Third Fujitsu Parallel Computing Workshop, Kawasaki, Japan. 
  12. ^ Funnelback. "Funnelback Ranking Algorithms". funnelback.com. 
  13. ^ Hawking, David. "Annotation Index System and Method". Lens. USPTO. Retrieved 8 June 2015. 
  14. ^ Matson, Brett. "Search Result Sub-topic Identification System And Method". Lens. USPTO. Retrieved 8 June 2015. 
  15. ^ http://docs.funnelback.com/contextual_navigation.html
  16. ^ Funnelback. "Supported platforms". funnelback.com. 
  17. ^ Funnelback. "Historical Release Notes". funnelback.com. 
  18. ^ Funnelback. "Third party licences". funnelback.com. 
  19. ^ http://docs.funnelback.com/groovy_filters.html
  20. ^ http://docs.funnelback.com/pre_or_post_command.html
  21. ^ http://docs.funnelback.com/user_interface_hook_scripts.html
  22. ^ http://docs.funnelback.com/java_libraries_collection_cfg.html
  23. ^ http://docs.funnelback.com/filter_classes_collection_cfg.html
  24. ^ http://docs.funnelback.com/database_collections.html
  25. ^ http://docs.funnelback.com/freemarker.html
  26. ^ http://docs.funnelback.com/command_line_administration.html
  27. ^ Doherty, Sean. "Panning for Gold - Search Engines - Editor's Choice Award" (PDF). Network Computing. Network Computing. Retrieved 18 September 2003. 
  28. ^ "iAwards - 2004 Winners". iAwards. Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA). 
  29. ^ "Ovum". ovum.com. 
  30. ^ "Funnelback sees promise in enterprise search space that others have abandoned". 451 Research Group. 451 Research Group. 
  31. ^ White, Martin. "Gartner Magic Quadrant 2014 for Enterprise Search". intranetfocus.com. 
  32. ^ "MySource Matrix Newsletter Issue #298". Squiz Labs. Squiz. Retrieved 8 June 2015. 

Coordinates: 35°17′2.868″S 149°7′58.116″E / 35.28413000°S 149.13281000°E / -35.28413000; 149.13281000