REVIEWER: Rob Wiesenberg, president of Contegra Systems.

BACKGROUND: Contegra Systems is a New York-based full-service Web development company, creating customized information publishing products for small, medium and large-tier organizations. With more than 20 years of experience, Contegra Systems offers expertise in strategic product design, search and navigation and user-friendly interfaces.

PLATFORMS: Windows, Linux.

PROBLEM SOLVED: Contegra Systems’ client, SLACK Inc. (a leading provider of health care information and the publisher of HemOnc Today), needed to build and launch HemOncToday.com, a new medical Web property offering a host of Web 2.0 features, guided search, topical navigation, custom registration, client data capture and a sophisticated ad-serve mechanism. However, the required search and navigation functionality could not be found in any off-the-shelf enterprise search product. In addition, because SLACK wanted a custom look and feel for HemOncToday.com, a templated approach to the user interface (UI) was also not feasible. With its comprehensive feature set, the dtSearch platform enabled Contegra Systems to build a completely customized Web product and user experience. Equally important, dtSearch integrated seamlessly with the client’s SQL back-end repositories.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: The dtSearch product line includes end-user, enterprise and developer text retrieval products. The product line also features publishing capabilities for publishing large document collections to Web sites or CD/DVD. Plus, the dtSearch product line has spidering capabilities for remote site and distributed searching access. Most importantly, all of the functionality is available for developers via its application programming interface (API).

STRENGTHS: Clients select Contegra Systems because of the company’s experience developing Web products to meet the unique needs of each specific audience. For Contegra Systems, selecting dtSearch as the base for HemOncToday.com was an easy choice. Beyond its customization capabilities, dtSearch offers excellent performance, reliability and scalability. In fact, Contegra Systems has had dtSearch installations with servers running for multiple years without restart. Moreover, the dtSearch pricing is extremely attractive, allowing Contegra Systems’ clients, in this case SLACK Inc., to allocate its resources to developing the custom application rather than focusing on the base software.

WEAKNESSES: The dtSearch Engine runs only under Windows and Linux and does not run on any other operating systems. With no inherent built-in support for guided search, a moderate level of customization is required to support this functionality.

SELECTION CRITERIA: dtSearch software was chosen after a product evaluation that included extensive search criteria, .NET support, ease of database integration and price. Additional consideration was given to dtSearch’s extensive installed base, well-documented code and access to top-level developers for support.

DELIVERABLES: The dtSearch API allowed Contegra Systems to launch a successful ad revenue-generating service for HemOncToday.com, creating new value from SLACK Inc.’s editorial investment.

VENDOR SUPPORT: Contegra Systems values dtSearch’s highly responsive customer service. With direct access to dtSearch developers, Contegra Systems can ensure that any issues are quickly addressed.

DOCUMENTATION: Documentation is comprehensive and clear. A widely subscribed and responsive public developer forum on Yahoo! Groups offers support from other developers.

dtSearch Full-Text Search Engine API
dtSearch Corp.
6852 Tulip Hill Terrace
Bethesda, MD 20816
(301) 263-0731
http://www.dtsearch.com/

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