Google follows up its Google Search Appliance launch with new side-by-side search and a Salesforce.com connector. The side-by-side search is a free download for GSA that lets admins set up quick search comparison tests for corporate employees. The workers vote on the best results, and the admin can then make purchasing recommendations. The Salesforce.com connector crawls Salesforce.com for files and documents.
Google Aug. 19 rolled out a side-by-side search comparison and new
Salesforce.com connectors for the GSA, the company's first enterprise search
upgrades since Google launched Google Search Appliance
6.0 to help companies sift through
billions of documents.
A free download
from Google Enterprise Labs, the side-by-side
search comparison lets workers query two different search engines, such as GSA
6.0 or Microsoft's Fast search, to see which gives better results.
Query results are presented in two panes on the screen
. Searchers can then vote on their
preferred results by choosing the Policy A or B buttons. The admin can then use
that information to choose and configure the right search solution for the
Cyrus Mistry, product manager for Google Enterprise, said in a video demonstration
that the admin decides the queries to be
tested. Employees visit an internal Website to see the queries and vote on
which search results they prefer.
After employees have voted, the tool shows them which tool received the most
votes. It also shows the probabilities and confidence interval that any given
configuration is better than the other, as well as whether there is enough data
to be statistically significant.
"All of the Side-by-Side administration can be done with a simple web
interface, and admins can anonymize each panel, so users don't know which
search engine or setting powers which set of results," Mistry explained in a blog post
. "Essentially, admins can now
test any search products they want and provide their organization with the
setting or solution that employees rate highest."
Essentially, searchers in the workplace are the guinea pigs for this test,
helping to improve search across the company's intranet. This is important at a
time when companies all over the world are struggling to provide their workers
with accurate, relevant search results to find information in human resources
applications or other content repositories.
To enable employees searching their company intranet to see search results
from several company data systems in one page, GSA needs to be able to crawl
content repositories. To do this, Google's enterprise search team uses connectors
that integrate data from file and content
systems, such as Microsoft SharePoint, IBM
FileNet and EMC Documentum.
Google now has a connector
that hooks into Salesforce.com. This allows GSA
to crawl the Salesforce.com CRM application
to help employees search documents and objects stored in Salesforce.
Side-by-side search and the connectors are two tools Google will use to try
to extend its enterprise search user base, which now sits at about 25,000
. Google is competing with Microsoft Fast,
Vivisimo, Endeca and several others in the enterprise search niche.