Richer search results increase performance for rich data exchange

Co-Founder and Chief Product Officer, Cloudant, an IBM company

With more than 20 million businesses on file in their database, Central Index, a global exchange for business data, is built on big data. Their international directory data is rich and varied, so when the team looked to make the switch to NoSQL from the relational database model of MySQL, they needed a solution that would allow them to scale rapidly and manage large amounts of complex data. With no dedicated ops team, database management meant time away from the core business—the less they had to manage in-house, the better.

Central Index found a fully managed solution with Cloudant, where their data layer and search functionality are integrated in one service that handles all the monitoring and administration.

When Central Index created searchable front-end business directories, they had several search products to choose from, but they chose to keep their data store and search indexes in one service for reliability, scalability and overall ease of use. The recent addition of faceted search will continue to make it easier for Central Index and their customers.

We began building the Cloudant search product in late 2009 because it was, and still is, a popular customer feature request. Search functionality is built into the core of the Cloudant product. Lucene Search is a natural fit for indexing and dynamically querying the JSON documents stored in Cloudant, and the features we’ve recently added allow our users to index and query in multiple ways to meet their needs. Companies like Central Index are excited about the possibilities that come with these new search features.

“We’re evaluating Cloudant’s new faceted search capabilities and think it will help our users generate more meaningful search results without having to build complicated database indexes,” said Glynn Bird, head of development at Central Index. “With Cloudant, it’s like we’re getting two managed services for the price of one. Our data layer and search are in one place, fully integrated and managed for us.”

The improvements to Cloudant Search enhance the same Lucene search indexing system currently built into the product, and support the database-as-a-service’s existing features, making Cloudant a truly all-in-one package. With faceting capabilities integrated into the product’s existing search functionality, Cloudant servers manage the heavy lifting so businesses like Central Index, and their customers, reap the benefits of increased performance.

If you’re interested in the technical nitty-gritty of faceted search, check out my post on the Cloudant blog to learn more.