The Australian government will launch a new
whole of government search service across its external Web sites
in January next year.
The tool will replace an existing service which has been
active since January 2004, according to tender documents released
by the federal Department of Finance and Administration (DOFA)
That tool is based on Funnelback's Panoptic search technology.
The company was spun off from government research body CSIRO in
February this year.
The existing solution is used on australia.gov.au,
publications.gov.au and 28 other Web sites.
"Finance continually improves and reviews the services
provided as part of the Government Search Service and may elect
to add, remove or change the search services that form part of
the Government Search Service," the documents said.
The department will pick a vendor for the new service in early
December, with the solution to be launched on 24 January
The successful vendor must supply staff, hardware, software,
disaster recovery, help desk support and secure Web hosting and
associated infrastructure to the government.
The new search service will include the ability to retrieve
search results from government Web sites, publications, media
releases and other data sources.
Additionally, its feature list will include the following:
- Customisable interface depending on online deployment location
- "Best bet" function to automatically visit the number one search result
- Internal reporting of data collected
- 99.5 percent uptime
- Results returned in less than 0.5 seconds
- Support of Web browsers including Firefox 1.0+, Internet Explorer 5.0+, Netscape 7.0+, Opera 6.0+ and Safari 1.2+
- Minimum World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) AA standards compliance rating