Xerox announced its entry into the search market this week with FactSpotter, document search software that is claimed to go beyond conventional keyword search.
FactSpotter is text mining software that combines a linguistic engine that allows users to make queries in everyday language. FactSpotter looks for the keywords contained in a query along with the context those words have.
According to Xerox, FactSpotter is capable of combing through almost any document regardless of the language, location, format or type; take advantage of the way humans think, speak and ask questions; and discriminate the results highlighting just a handful of relevant answers instead of returning thousands of unrelated responses.
Frédérique Segond, manager of parsing and semantics research at XRCE said that the tool is more accurate because it delves into documents, extracting the concepts and the relationships among them. “By understanding the context, it returns the right information to the searcher, and it even highlights the exact location of the answer within the document”.
Whilst it sounds appealing, FactSpotter will not be coming to a browser near anyone, anytime shortly. Xerox plans to launch FactSpotter next year as part of the paid Xerox Litigation Service platform and has no plans for a wider or public release. Here’s betting that a Steve Jobs character comes along and steals the concept and turns into the next Google; history often does repeat itself.