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  1. #1
    New Coder
    Join Date
    May 2003
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    MI
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    One step Hit Highlighting using Indexing Server?

    Hi -

    I have a site on an IIS 6 server with about 1000 pages and growing, and have gotten Indexing Server up and running. I also got a search page working, as described in the article Adding a search facility to your website

    And, I even got hit-highlighting working as specified in some of the examples that come with the server SDK. What is hit-highlighting? Take a look at a Google search results page. You are probably so used to it that you don't remember how crummy search can be: Google highlights the search term in context in the surrounding text. You can tell immediately if the page is likely to be what you are looking for.

    The typical indexing server query result page takes us back 10 years to the oldstyle "abstract" results. A list of pages, with little ranking symbols (useless). Each result has 2 clickable icons: summary and full. Clicking them brings some hit highlighted results.

    Being completely spoiled by Google, this is one step too many!
    The user should be able to scan a page of results and see the search term in context - NOT to have to click an icon next to a block of irrelevant text. Why make them guess what is behind the icons? Is there no way to make the hit highlighted results show up immediately, in one step?

    My second issue with indexing services' hit highlighting is the requirement that the server be set up to read .htw and .htx files. I have made that change on the Development server, but for various reasons it will probably be impossible for me to meet that requirement on the production server. Is there NO way around this? How does google do it?

    I'm almost ready to buy a commercial search product but it seems a shame to abandon a perfectly good (and free) indexing service.

  • #2
    Senior Coder
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    Apr 2003
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    England
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    There are probably plenty of free page indexers, hell you can just put a google search on your site I think.

    The way search engines index pages by content is well documented and a simple search engine with weightings, stop filters etc only takes a few days to implement and you can change it to do whatever you want. (pulling out a few words either side of the first instance of that word on the page or whatever would be pretty trivial)


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