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Friday, April 01, 2005

John Battelle On Transparansee

John Battelle writes," Think of transparensee as a smart layer of search on top of database-driven applications like dating, home or car buying. Transparansee's "Discovery Search Engine" seeks to address the "stupid computer" problems which plague most structured databases.For special type of searches, one always has a sneaking suspicion that the results are missing an entire set of possibilities which are "close enough" to what you want, but you've been limited by the parameters you chose - if you open it up too much, you get a bunch of stuff you don't want. What to do?
Transparensee uses "fuzzy search" algorithms to scour a database and offer on the fly weighting based on any parameter you choose. This is powerful stuff when you think about it, and it solves a core database search issue,:there is the right answer for the query you are entering, but damned if it isn't escaping you, due to the blunt nature of structured search. Think of such a tool for Expedia, or Lexis Nexis, for example. It sort of reminds of collaborative filtering, but for more types of datasets. After all, it's hard to imagine a collaborative filtering application for home buying - "people who bought this home, also bought these homes...".

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