Inmagic Adds Content Extraction, Classification Tools. (News Break)

By Wiggins, Richard W. | Information Today, July-August 2002 | Go to article overview

Inmagic Adds Content Extraction, Classification Tools. (News Break)


Wiggins, Richard W., Information Today


Inmagic, Inc. has added to its catalog of software tools that are designed to harvest and classify textual content. The new Inmagic Gatherer crawls designated Web spaces (either internal or external) and extracts content for the addition of metatags and loading into Inmagic's DB/TextWorks database software. The new Classifier can take such extracted content and automatically classify it according to a given taxonomy. The company introduced the products at the SLA 2002 conference in Los Angeles.

The announcement follows Inmagic's May release of DB/Text WebPublisher 6.0, which allows customers to publish DB/Text-resident content and Web-based applications to end-users via XML. The company says that DB/Text, the combination of the three products, will allow customers to more easily harvest, organize, and publish their textual content on the Web. The WebPublisher features a drag-and-drop, WYSIWYG editing environment. Inmagic offers the suite of products with a single interface under the name IntelliMagic.

The new products represent a broadening of focus for Inmagic, which says it serves over 15,000 special libraries and information centers in 50 countries. Gatherer and Classifier are based on software from TopicalNet that incorporates patented technology.

Susan Steams, Inmagic's vice president of marketing, told me she sees three features that distinguish the companies' new offerings from those of competitors:

* Flexibility--Steams says that DB/Text lets customers store both textual and structured data in a single knowledge base. The new products allow existing and new customers to manage, organize, and retrieve content in a variety of formats.

* RAD--According to Steams, Inmagic customers can rapidly develop and enhance applications using the product suite. She says some customers have built applications in a matter of days--which they previously assumed would take a year to develop.

* Cost--Steams says the cost of these products is far lower than what competitors offer. As an example, she cites a company whose enterprise portal development was halted after an investment of over $2 million. A Gatherer/Classifier-based solution would cost a fraction of that amount. She said: "A typical configuration of Inmagic Gatherer/Classifier for an existing Inmagic customer can be purchased for less than $20,000, excluding any consultative services. A typical workgroup IntelliMagic configuration that includes DB/Text-Works, DB/Text WebPublisher, and Inmagic Gatherer/Classifier is typically priced at under $50,000."

Classifier ships with a default taxonomy provided by TopicalNet. A customer can use that taxonomy or can incorporate its own taxonomy into the classification scheme. Many automated classification systems "learn" how to process a given enterprise's content through training sets. The administrator feeds a small subset of documents into the system and guides it to classify those documents. In contrast, the Inmagic product can apply the built-in taxonomy out of the box. The customer can accept the resulting classification or choose to tweak it as necessary. …

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