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  • Preliminary V6 feature list and details

    Some news on the upcoming Version 6 of Zoom...

    We are steadily approaching completion on V6, with several alpha releases under our belt. We will soon be moving on to beta testing once we have completely finalized all new features.

    (We are looking for more keen, conscientious users to join our beta testing program. Please send us an e-mail if you are interested and think you can test out some of the new features mentioned below.)

    Note that V6 will be a free upgrade for anyone who purchased V5.1 in the six months prior to its release. That means anyone who buys V5.1 today will receive the free upgrade.

    Below is an updated list of features that we have implemented for V6:
    • New User Interface: We have given the UI a complete overhaul and in its place is a more intuitive and flexible design. Here are some screenshots of the new interface.
    • Log window with real-time filtering: You can now filter index log messages on the fly which should be helpful when tracking down error messages, skip reasons, and broken links.
    • New Search Ranking Algorithm: The ranking algorithm and index structure have gone through some major improvements. This should produce much more relevant results than before and also allow you greater control of your search results. This includes preference given to words that are found closer together on the same page, and more.
    • Faster and more accurate exact phrase searches: There can be an improvement from at least 5% to 60% in search time for exact phrase matches depending on the query and content. You can also now perform exact phrase matching on synonyms, accent insensitive words and stem-matched words (see stemming below).
    • Stemming: This allows searches to match words which are similar or derivatives of each other. This addresses an often requested feature to match plural form of words to their singular forms. When this feature is enabled, a search for the word "boat" will match "boats" and "boating". More details on stemming here.
    • ASP.NET Server Control: V6 will feature a native ASP.NET platform option. This provides performance similar to the CGI version and is best suited to integrating with ASP.NET web sites.
    • Improved highlighting in context descriptions: The highlighting in context descriptions has been improved such that words matching due to stemming, synonyms, or accent insensitivity options enabled can be highlighted.
    • Office 2007 plugin: You can now index and search Office 2007 file formats (e.g. DOCX, PPTX, XLSX)
    • Improved Vista support: V6 is designed with Vista in mind, and features better compatibility with UAC (User Access Control, folder permissions, etc.). Note that we fully support Vista in the existing V5 of the software, but these V6 changes remove a few Vista quirks.
    • Advanced Template options: While your existing search templates from V5 will work in V6, we now also support advanced options so you can customize the appearance of your search results without having to modify the scripting. This includes the ability to repeat or omit certain elements (such as the "Results: 1 2 3 ... " links)
    • Custom Meta Fields: Specify arbitrary meta fields to be indexed and made search-able. For example, index and search on a real estate website, by "Number of bedrooms", "Suburb", "Price", "Property type", etc. This is a big feature as it effectively means you can build simple custom databases with a multi criteria search using Zoom without actually having a database. See the Fruits-R-Us demo site for an example of this in action.
    • User-specifiable file types: You can specify how each file extension will be handled. For example, you can specify that a .JPZ file be treated as a jpeg file.
    • New and improved "Jump to highlighting" script which will be more compatible with other scripts and also exclude highlighting within ZOOMSTOP sections. This can be used to avoid highlighting some sections of your page like the navigation menu.
    • MHT plugin for indexing Internet Explorer's MHT web pages.
    • Support for optional ZOOMTITLE and ZOOMDESCRIPTION to allow each web page to have a custom meta data that is used only by Zoom, but not by other search engines, like Google. This is useful for SEO work where you need to optimise pages in different ways for different engines.
    • Configurable truncate title length option for super long page titles.
    • Option to "Open all plugin file formats in a new window" so that you can have HTML files open in the same window, and PDF files open in a new window. At the moment in V5 all documents open in the same window, or they all open in a new window.
    • Spider image maps. The Zoom spider will now crawl image map links.
    • New spider option: URLTYPE_FOLLOW_ALL (follow all pages to one level for a start point without indexing the start page).
    • Boosting/weighting of each start point. So you can boost/deboost entire domains.
    • Thumbnail/images for Recommended Links.
    • Checks for changes made to configuration, and prompts user to save config before quitting if changes have been made. This helps avoid accidentally loosing changes.
    • Check Thumbnail Exists: Option to check that a thumbnail image exists on the web server before using the link. This means avoid broken links to images that don't exist.
    • New, improved method of CRC duplicate page detection: the CRC comparison is now made after stripping out HTML and ZOOMSTOP sections. This means that a page with ads excluded using ZOOMSTOP will now be recognized as being duplicate, despite having different dynamic ads on the page.
    • Improved link finding methods in Spider Mode: crawl more pages. In particular there is now more chance that non HTML links that are within Javascript script tags are picked up by the spider. We would still suggest using normal HTML links on your pages where possible however.
    • Zoom will now reload the last ZCFG configuration file used by default.
    • New PDF scanning method ("Scan text by text layer") to allow for more flexibility when indexing some PDF layouts.
    • Toggle option to switch behaviour of accent/diacritic insensitivity to use digraphs or otherwise (i.e. "" = "oe", etc.)
    • Improved compatibility and tolerance of antivirus software and the Windows Indexing Service. Zoom will now deal with cases where the Windows Indexing Service or other 3rd party software (like Antivirus software) is locking Zoom's files.


    ========
    THIS THREAD IS NOW CLOSED AS WE HAVE MOVED BETA TESTING INTO IT'S OWN FORUM
    Last edited by Ray; 09-02-2008, 08:48 AM.
    --Ray
    Wrensoft Web Software
    Sydney, Australia
    Zoom Search Engine

  • #2
    Things we're still working on (or considering):
    • Wildcards for Recommended Links (so you can specify one recommended link that will match multiple search words and queries)
    • ZIP plugin
    • Option to truncate URL displayed in search results
    • Category results summary (x results found for category A, y results for category B, etc)
    • Strip session IDs from URLs
    • More advanced authentication methods (e.g. configure Zoom to POST login details), in addition to the existing methods like HTTP authentication.
    • Improve cookie support (e.g. store cookies sent to spider)
    • Tag cloud
    --Ray
    Wrensoft Web Software
    Sydney, Australia
    Zoom Search Engine

    Comment


    • #3
      I would love 2 of the "maybe" new features!

      I was going to post to know howwe could get a "catch all" keyword in recommended links.

      Funny! Maybe ...next version. Well! I vote for that!

      Second "maybe feature": tag cloud. For indexing, that would help a lot!

      My $0.02 cents

      Roger Pilon, Librarian
      Ponics Library

      Comment


      • #4
        Costs of upgrading to version 6

        Hi

        As a purchaser of 5.1 just over the 6 months 'time limit' for free upgrade, I think that Wrensoft could perhaps take a rather more generous approach.

        Lot will depend on just how much the upgrade costs.

        Personally I find 5.1 to be pretty good product.

        All best

        Colin

        Comment


        • #5
          For all customers who bought Zoom prior to the 6 months period, they will be able to upgrade at a discounted price. Upgrades are optional of course, as we don't charge any annual fees.

          Upgrade prices below (all quoted in USD):

          V3/V4/V5 Standard Edition ---> V6 Standard Edition: $25

          V3/V4/V5 Professional Edition ---> V6 Professional Edition: $49

          V5 Enterprise Edition ---> V6 Enterprise Edition: $149
          --Ray
          Wrensoft Web Software
          Sydney, Australia
          Zoom Search Engine

          Comment


          • #6
            These seem to be very fair update prices given all the added functionality listed for v6.

            Andrew

            Comment


            • #7
              Please provide support for Server 2008 64 bit machines...

              Comment


              • #8
                Availability

                When will version 6 be available?

                I am very interested in the "Custom Meta Fields" function.

                Is their going to be a limit to the number that can be created?
                Will you be able to design the advanced search form in any way you want?
                For example, your demo page shows drop downs for availability, type, price and organic. Will we be able to use radio buttons or checkboxes?


                Thanks
                Steve

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by iampedro View Post
                  Please provide support for Server 2008 64 bit machines...
                  The software will run on Server 2008 64-bit machines, and it will be one of the supported platforms. Although we will not be releasing 64-bit versions of the Indexer (maybe V6.1), the 32-bit versions will run fine on 64-bit operating systems.

                  As far as I know, V5 currently runs on Server 2008 64-bit without problems too.
                  --Ray
                  Wrensoft Web Software
                  Sydney, Australia
                  Zoom Search Engine

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by microdaq View Post
                    When will version 6 be available?
                    We are currently in alpha testing for V6. We're hoping to move on to beta testing soon (which means that we would have locked down the feature set and won't be adding more - as we are still doing at this point). We hope to have it released to the public in the next few months but we want to get it right.

                    Originally posted by microdaq View Post
                    I am very interested in the "Custom Meta Fields" function.

                    Is their going to be a limit to the number that can be created?
                    We don't place any limits on the number of meta fields you can have, but some field types will have technical limits to the number of values possible. For example, the "Dropdown" meta field type will be limited to a maximum of 254 possible dropdown values. The "Text" field types (for names, etc.) will of course have no limit. It is similar to a database really.

                    Originally posted by microdaq View Post
                    Will you be able to design the advanced search form in any way you want?
                    For example, your demo page shows drop downs for availability, type, price and organic. Will we be able to use radio buttons or checkboxes?
                    Yes. It is similar with the way our search forms work now. There will be an optional generated search form which you can style with CSS and will retain search values on the results page.

                    But you can turn this off and create your own search form in HTML any way you like. In fact, the Advanced Search page on our Fruits-R-Us Demo site is exactly this. It is a separately defined HTML page with a custom defined form.
                    Last edited by Ray; 09-12-2008, 01:41 AM.
                    --Ray
                    Wrensoft Web Software
                    Sydney, Australia
                    Zoom Search Engine

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Very happy to see that you will implement a native ASP.NET servercontrol.

                      Please make an items collections containing the search results, and supply us with methods to remove, alter and so on. If/when items have been alterd(dirty) then the pre-render method shuld re-calc hits/page numbers,- before page rendering are executed.

                      Hopefully,
                      Hessner

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hi,

                        Will the SDK with the source to the CGI be release for V6 as well?

                        Thanks,
                        D

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Yes, we will be releasing an SDK to V6 as well, sometime after the public V6 release.
                          --Ray
                          Wrensoft Web Software
                          Sydney, Australia
                          Zoom Search Engine

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Yes, we will be releasing an SDK to V6 as well, sometime after the public V6 release.
                            This is great! Also, will the CGI still be compilable on big endian machines? (i.e. have the extra includes, etc. - we were able to adapt the solaris options to compile on linux-ppc.)

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              The CGI is now significantly more complex than it was, as we have added a bunch of new features, plus the same code base should also be able to be used for ASP.NET and FastCGI.

                              We haven't done any testing of V6 on PowerPC hardware or Sparc hardware as yet. But there is no reason why it shouldn't be able to work as well or better than V5 on this big endian hardware.

                              Comment

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