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Entity-Aware Search

We are currently testing support for entity-tagged text in Peripleo; that is, text where references to places and people are tagged with Linked Data identifiers. Thanks to the networked nature of Peripleo's data model, this allows us to introduce an exciting new feature: entity-aware search.

Note: entity aware search is currently in an experimental stage. We are still working on a full implementation. Expect the occasional hickup - and bear with us!

First off, search in Peripleo is fulltext-capable. That means if the item is a text (e.g. a work of literature), search will cover the text content as well, not just the metadata (title, blurb etc.). Search results that are returned based on a fulltext match will include preview text snippets. So far for the conventional part.

Thanks to the entity tags, search results in Peripleo also reflect the places (and people) that occur in the vicinity of your search. Since you won't usually find this functionality in other applications, let's look at a concrete example.

Try a search for crocodiles. We will also apply an item type filter, so that we narrow down our results to objects . In our example, the search returns a single hit - "The Histories" by Herodotus. The map shows a number of dots and regions.

We mentioned before that a single result in the list does not necessarily mean a single dot on the map. A literary work like "The Histories" is a prime example, as it contains references to hundreds of places.

What you see on the map, however, is not all of the places mentioned in "The Histories" either. It's only a small part of them. Yes, you guessed it: it's those places that appear in the vicinity of the term crocodiles.

Text Snippets

Click one of the map markers (or regions). The item details box shows one or more text snippets, based on the combination of the term crocodiles and the place you selected.

If technically supported by the datasource, the snippets include links that lead back directly to the corresponding section in the source environment. In case of our example above, the source of the text is Pelagios Commons' annotation environment Recogito which allows us to jump, for example, right into a section where crocodiles are mentioned in the context of Ionia.

Entity-aware search also covers the case where your match is based on item metadata rather than the content. Try a search for herodotus.

The map is now much more densely populated. That's because your results include Herodotus' "The Histories" as a whole - with all the places it mentions.

Click a marker. Again, Peripleo will show the text snippets relevant to the selected place. However, this time without the additional contextualization from a query term.