Lucid Imagination wants to make enterprise search easy

Enterprises create and store a massive amount of structured and unstructured data. The problem is that they often have no idea what they have or how to find it. Lucid Imagination believes Apache Lucerne and Apache Solr contain the answer.

Paul Doscher, new CEO of Lucid Imagination, and his colleague, Grant Ingersoll, Chief Scientist. I've spoken with Paul in times past, but this was the first time for me to meet Grant.  It is clear that they are on a mission to help enterprises deal with their ever-growing pile of structured and non-structured data.

The problem

Enterprises are creating more and more data and are having trouble turning this into useful information that comes easily to hand. Data can be found in structured databases inside of the enterprise's transactional and business systems. Data can also be found in electronic messages, documents, presentations, spreadsheets, tickler files, instant messages. That data, unfortunately, is not easy scan for something important.

Often what happens is that staff members can't find needed data and so they create it again.

This can be quite a problem if the data is needed for regulatory compliance. It can be very embarrassing and potentially quite costly if the enterprise is asked for data related to some event and can't produce it in a timely fashion.

Lucid proposes the solution

Lucid Imagination is an organization that is taking several open source projects, Apache Lucene and Apache Solr, and packaging them as a family of commercial products.

Lucid's products include the following:

  • LucidWorks — a packaged search platform based upon Apache Lucene/Solr that is commercially supported
  • LucidWorks Enterprise — an enhanced version of Lucidworks that offers significantly faster searches, a range of codecs allowing indexing of a broader array of data sources (including Hadoop HDFS and Amazon EC2 S3 connectors) and LDAP-aware document and user access control for greater security.
  • LucidWorks Cloud — the capability of LucidWorks Enterprise made available as a cloud-based service.

Snapshot analysis

Lucid Imagination is competing with another of other companies, such as Innovent Solutions and Search Technologies, that hope to make Apache Lucene/Solr a part  of enterprise tool-kits. Lucid hopes to stand out because of the enhancements it has made to the open source software to make it easier to use, help it index a larger number of data source, and increase the levels of security protecting the resultant search solution.

After speaking with Lucid Imagination, I have no doubt that LucidWorks could become an important component of an enterprise search and retrieval system. If your organization is facing challenges in this area, it would be wise to have a conversation with them as well.