Time for conceptual search to finally take off?
EDiscovery vendor Clearwell has extended its flagship Transparent Search platform to include what it is calling concept search, offering users more relevant results.
Concept search differs from a traditional keyword search in that alongside results from the search term entered other related terms will be included in the results. However Clearwell says that this is as much of a drawback as it is a bonus because results are often less precise, as is one reason why concept search has failed to catch on in a big way.
A search for diamond, for example, can return results for companies with that in their name, the gem, playing cards, baseball fields and more. Similarly a search for Turkey will produce results for the country and the bird. Clearwell says this increases the number of irrelevant search results that will need to be collected and analysed in the event of legal proceedings.
Clearwell’s new Transparent Concept Search, which sits on tip of its E-Discovery Platform, enables users to refine search results to remove irrelevant answers. Kamal Shah, vice president of products and marketing for Clearwell Systems, told CBR it, "means the user can interact with concept search engine by only focusing on what is relevant, rather than what isn’t."
The user can then dive down further into the relevant results and refine search terms even more. Results are ranked by conceptual relevance, the firm says, and users can prioritise documents depending on their relevance. The ability to remove or ignore irrelevant search results should reduce costs associated with the legal review process, Clearwell claims.
"Today, concept search is not as widely used as it could and should be, given the benefits it delivers, and this is primarily because of the lack of precision due to its black-box nature," said Browning Marean, senior counsel, DLA Piper. "Now, with Clearwell’s Transparent Concept Search, users can peer inside the black box, and interactively refine their searches to yield more relevant results. This will dramatically increase the adoption of concept search as a must-have feature for effective eDiscovery."
Clearwell Transparent Concept Search will be available at the end of Q1 2011 at no additional cost.