Last week at Lucene Revolution we announced Lucidworks Enterprise. Lucidworks Enterprise is a commercially supported search platform that builds on the power of Apache Lucene and Solr to deliver a flexible and scalable search platform.

Gee.  That almost sounds like a marketing guy wrote it.  Let me try again: Lucidworks Enterprise is software that let’s you easily build great search applications.  You can install it, index some content, and search that content with just a few keystrokes and clicks of the mouse.  Or, you can build a full-blown, integrated search application with custom plugins and your own user interface, all running on a fifty-node cluster.  And if you really need it, the full flexibility of Solr is right there, always accessible.

Lucidworks

Lucidworks Enterprise extends Solr to include some enterprise-grade features, just as Solr extends Lucene to provide server functionality.  By extending and embedding Solr, we get to use all of its powerful features without having to do what many folks do: fork the code base.  You see, we are really embedding Solr without changing it appreciably.  Where we do change it, we contribute our code back to the open source project.  A great example of that is SolrCloud, a feature we developed specifically for Lucidworks Enterprise.  The problem was that it was such a fundamental change to Solr that we would have to maintain a forked code-base forever, or simply contribute the code to the open source project.  We chose the latter, and that’s the choice we will continue to prefer for such fundamental and powerful features.

So, what’s in Lucidworks Enterprise?  Here’s a quick summary of the main features:

SolrCloud:
provides simplified configuration management, load balancing and failover in a distributed environment.  It’s the key feature if you have a cluster of search nodes.
User Interface:
we added a web-driven user interface to simplify the process of configuring the system, indexing content, and trying out searches.
CLICK Scoring:
ever wonder how to get better results on searches over your own content?  The CLICK scoring framework provides feedback from searchers back into the relevance ranking of documents, improving relevance for all.
ReST API:
all of the power of Lucidworks Enterprise is available programmatically, so you can build more thorough applications and automated administration.
Smarter Defaults:
Lucidworks Enterprise is configured out-of-the-box to be a great search application, with good relevance and a full list of features like spell checking, autocomplete, and unsupervised feedback.
Data Acquisition:
we have added a crawler and scheduler that simplifies the process of getting data into Lucidworks Enterprise.  Just point it at a Web site or set of files, or import data from a database.

So that’s Lucidworks Enterprise.  We’ll be talking more about it over the coming days.  This is the beginning of an exciting time for Lucid Imagination: we’re really excited to raise the bar with search and get our customers using the latest and greatest in search technology: Lucidworks Enterprise. It’s free for developers, so download Lucidworks Enterprise now!