Curated for content, computing, and digital experience professionals

Day: June 16, 2008

What is Semantic Technology Anyway?

Meaning is a very large concept in every aspect of search technology and dozens of search product sites include either the words “semantic” or “meaning” as a key element of the offered technology. This is not as far fetched as search product claims to “know” what the searcher wants to find, as if “knowing” can be attributable to non-human operations. However, how well a search engine indexes and retrieves content to meet a searcher’s intent, is truly in the eyes of the beholder. I can usually understand why, technically speaking, a piece of content turns up in a search result, but that does not mean that it was a valid scrap for my intent. My intent for a search cannot possibly be discernible by a search engine if, as is most often the case, I don’t explicitly and eloquently express what, why, and other contextual facts when entering a query.

The session we have set aside at Gilbane San Francisco for a discussion on current activity related to semantic technologies will undoubtedly reveal more meaning about technologies and art of leveraging tools to elicit semantically relevant content. I suspect that someone will also stipulate that what works requires a defined need and clear intent during the implementation process – but what about all those fuzzy situations? I hope to find out.

This is the last posting before the conference this week so I hope you will add this enterprise search session (EST-6: Semantic Technology – Breakdown or Breakthrough) being moderated by Colin Britton to your agenda on June 19th. He will be joined by speakers: Steve Carton, VP Content Technologies, Retrieval Systems Corp., Folksonomies: Just Good Enough for all Kinds of Thing, Prakesh Govindarajulu, President, RealTech Inc, Building Enterprise Taxonomies from the Ground Up, and Jack Jia, Founder & CEO, Baynote.

See you in San Francisco in person or virtually thereafter.

Sun Announces Agreement to Acquire MySQL

Sun Microsystems, Inc. (NASDAQ: JAVA) announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire MySQL AB, an open source icon and developer of open source databases for approximately $1 billion in total consideration. The acquisition accelerates Sun’s position in enterprise IT to now include the $15 billion database market. With millions of global deployments including Facebook, Google, Nokia, Baidu and China Mobile, MySQL will bring synergies to Sun that will help drive new adoption of MySQL’s open source database in more traditional applications and enterprises. The integration with Sun will extend the commercial appeal of MySQL’s offerings and improve its value proposition with the addition of Sun’s global services organization. MySQL will also gain new distribution through Sun’s channels including its OEM relationships with Intel, IBM and Dell. MySQL’s open source database is the “M” in LAMP – the software platform comprised of Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP/Perl. Sun is committed to enhancing and optimizing the LAMP stack on GNU/Linux and Microsoft Windows along with OpenSolaris and MAC OS X. The database from MySQL, OpenSolaris and GlassFish, together with Sun’s Java platform and NetBeans communities, will create a Web application platform across a wide range of customers shifting their applications to the Web. Following completion of the proposed transaction, MySQL will be integrated into Sun’s Software, Sales and Service organizations and the company’s CEO, Marten Mickos, will be joining Sun’s senior executive leadership team. In the interim, a joint team with representatives from both companies will develop integration plans that build upon the technical, product and cultural synergies and the best business and product development practices of both companies. MySQL is headquartered in Cupertino, CA and Uppsala, Sweden and has 400 employees in 25 countries. As part of the transaction, Sun will pay approximately $800 million in cash in exchange for all MySQL stock and assume approximately $200 million in options. The transaction is expected to close in late Q3 or early Q4 of Sun’s fiscal 2008. Completion of the transaction is subject to regulatory approval and other customary closing conditions. The deal is expected to be accretive to FY10 operating income on a GAAP basis. http://www.mysql.com, http://sun.com

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