Thursday, 24th February 2011, 11:00 am (PDCC Meeting Room)
Speaker: Christian von der Weth (PDCC)
Title: FAST: Friends Augmented Search Techniques- System Design & Data-Management Issues
Improving web search solely based on algorithmic refinements has reached a plateau. The emerging generation of searching techniques attempts to harness the "wisdom of crowds", using inputs from end users in the spirit of Web 2.0. In this paper, we introduce a framework facilitating friends augmented search techniques (FAST). To that end, we present a browser add-on as front end for collaborative browsing and searching, supporting synchronous (online chat and guided browsing) as well as asynchronous (adding tags, rating, comments, links) collaboration between users. We then describe the back end system supporting data-management for FAST, a distributed key-value store for efficient information retrieval in the presence of an evolving knowledge base. The mechanisms we explore in supporting efficient query processing for FAST are applicable for many other recent Web 2.0 applications that rely on similar key-value stores. In summary, the specific collaborative search tool we present is expected to be an useful utility in its own right and also spur further research on related research on friends augmented search techniques, while the data-management techniques we developed in the process are of more general interest and applicability.