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From "Michael McCandless (JIRA)" <>
Subject [jira] Commented: (LUCENE-1597) New Document and Field API
Date Mon, 13 Apr 2009 21:46:14 GMT


Michael McCandless commented on LUCENE-1597:

This looks great!  Many random thoughts...

This is largely a cleaner restructuring of what's already held in
*Field, cutting over to AttributeSource so that we gain extensibility
to other attrs people would want to store.  It also decouples type
from value, which is great.

It's also quite different from Lucy/KS's approach which is to use
carefully thought out subclasses to represent the type hierarchy.  Ie
Lucy/KS uses "the language" (classes/subclasses) to express things,
and this approach uses AttributeSource (which is sort of our
workaround for Java not allowing multiple inheritance).

This approach subdivides a type into N fully orthogonal attributes, so
a type is some combination of configured instances of these
attributes.  This actually mirrors what Field does today (in that we
have Field.Store.X, Field.Index.X, Field.TermVector.X).

This can sometimes be awkward because attributes are "flat", eg
TermVectorAttribute only makes sense for indexed fields, or for a
BinaryFieldValue most attributes are not allowed.  We don't get strong
type checking of such "mistakes", vs KS/Lucy's approach.

How would you turn on/off [future] CSF storage?  A separate attr?  A
boolean on StoreAttribute?

NumericFieldAttribute seems awkward (one shouldn't have to turn on/off
zero padding, trie; or rather it's better to operate in "use cases"
like "I want to do range filtering" or "I want to sort").  Seems like
maybe we need a SortAttribute and RangeFilterAttribute
(or... something).

Presumably would could make an "iterate over all fields" utility so
that a consumer of document wouldn't have to differentiate b/w fixed &
variable fields.

In this model, can one re-use FieldValue for maximizing indexing
throughput?  Seems like yes?

StoredFieldsWriter is needing to do instanceof checks & casting,
which'd be nice to [somehow] avoid.

It'd be great to land this before 2.9 (and cut back to Java 1.4) but
maybe that's too ambitious.

Should we make "get me your TokenStream" (get/setAnalyzer) a part of

Can a single FieldDescriptor be shared among many fields?  Seems like
we'd have to take name out of FieldDescriptor (I don't think the name
should be in FieldDescriptor, anyway).

Also how would we correspondingly fix FieldInfos to "generically"
store & merge attribute values?  (EG TermVectorAttribute's
isStoreOffsets/Positions get "merged" and changed whenever segments
are merged, or docs are added to RAM buffer).  Seems like each
attribute needs a write/read/merge?

One thing I like about DocumentDescriptor is it can be the basis for
app-level schema... we could eventually allows serialize/deserialize
(eg XML or JSON) of the doc DocumentDescriptor.  In fact wouldn't
FieldInfos simply store a DocumentDescriptor (having been merged from
all the docs in that segment)?  It also may enable some speedups
during indexing eg I can imagine (future) having an indexing chain
that's provided the DocumentDescriptor it will handle, up front.

Can we maybe rename Descriptor -> Type?  Eg FieldDescriptor ->

> New Document and Field API
> --------------------------
>                 Key: LUCENE-1597
>                 URL:
>             Project: Lucene - Java
>          Issue Type: New Feature
>          Components: Index
>            Reporter: Michael Busch
>            Priority: Minor
>         Attachments: lucene-new-doc-api.patch
> This is a super rough prototype of how a new document API could look like. It's basically
what I came up with during a long flight across the Atlantic :)
> It is not integrated with anything yet (like IndexWriter, DocumentsWriter, etc.) and
heavily uses Java 1.5 features, such as generics and annotations.
> The general idea sounds similar to what Marvin is doing in KS, which I found out by reading
Mike's comments on LUCENE-831, I haven't looked at the KS API myself yet. 
> Main ideas:
> - separate a field's value from its configuration; therefore this patch introduces two
classes: FieldDescriptor and FieldValue
> - I was thinking that in most cases the documents people add to a Lucene index look alike,
i.e. they contain mostly the same fields with the same settings. Yet, for every field instance
the DocumentsWriter checks the settings and calls the right consumers, which themselves check
settings and return true or false, indicating whether or not they want to do something with
that field or not. So I was thinking we could design the document API similar to the Class<->Object
concept of OO-languages. There a class is a blueprint (as everyone knows :) ), and an object
is one instance of it. So in this patch I introduced a class called DocumentDescriptor, which
contains all FieldDescriptors with the field settings. This descriptor is given to the consumer
(IndexWriter) once in the constructor. Then the Document "instances" are created and added
via addDocument().
> - A Document instance allows adding "variable fields" in addition to the "fixed fields"
the DocumentDescriptor contains. For these fields the consumers have to check the field settings
for every document instance (like with the old document API). This is for maintaining Lucene's
flexibility that everyone loves.
> - Disregard the changes to AttributeSource for now. The code that's worth looking at
is contained in a new package "newdoc".
> Again, this is not a "real" patch, but rather a demo of how a new API could roughly work.

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