Developers Get a New Tool With Amazon's CloudSearch
In an April 12 blog post, Werner Vogels, CTO of Amazon.com, said Amazon CloudSearch eliminates a key pain point for developers: searching for data, information, documents or even code.
Vogels said Amazon CloudSearch is based on more than a decade of research and development of high quality search technologies for Amazon.com. The technology was built by A9, the Amazon.com subsidiary that focuses on search technologies.
"The technology that is used at all the different places where you can search on Amazon.com is also at the core of at Amazon CloudSearch," he said.
Indeed, "Almost every application these days needs some form of search and as such every developer has to spend significant time implementing it," Vogels said. "With Amazon CloudSearch, developers can now simply focus on their application and leave the management of search to the cloud."
Overall, Vogels said Amazon CloudSearch is a fully-featured search engine that is easy to manage and scale. It offers full-text search with features like faceting and user-defined rank functions. And like most Amazon Web Services offerings, Amazon CloudSearch scales automatically as your data and traffic grow, making it an easy choice for applications small to large, Vogels said. With Amazon CloudSearch, developers just create a Search Domain, upload data, and start querying, he noted.
Explaining why Amazon decided to go after search, Vogels said:
Search is an essential part of many of today's cloud-centric applications. While in our daily lives we are mostly familiar with the search functionality offered by Web search, there are in fact many more cases where search is a fundamental component of an application. Search is a much broader technology than just the indexing of large collections of Web pages. Many organizations have large collections of documents, structured and unstructured, that can benefit from a specialized search service. With the rise of the App developer culture, there is an increasing number of consumer data sources that cannot be simply queried with a Web search engine. Using specialized ranking functions, these apps can give their customers a highly specialized search experience.
Moreover, Vogels said Amazon CloudSearch will have a democratizing effect as it offers features that have been out of reach for many customers. "With Amazon CloudSearch, a powerful search engine is now in the hands of every developer, at our familiar low prices, using a pay-as-you-go model," he said. It will allow developers to improve functionality of their products, at lower costs with almost zero administration. It is very simple to get started; customers can create a Search Domain, upload their documents, and can immediately start querying.