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From Dan Armbrust <>
Subject Re: Lucene and remote index and java applet, with no java app server
Date Mon, 10 Oct 2005 15:35:48 GMT
J. David Boyd wrote:
> Here's my dilemma.
> For years, we have supplied paper documentation to our customers.  Many
> pages of paper.  All together, it makes a 3 foot stack when printed.
> Also for many years, customers have been asking for docs in electronic
> format, so, recently, I wrote some Perl scripts that convert our many
> legacy word perfect files into PDF format. (I shouldn't really call them
> legacy, as that is still what the documentation author writes in.)
> We generate some HTML pages as a wrapper, that break the 543 PDF files
> into different modules, and this gets placed on a section of our web site.
> The users can see the Module they want, and then grab an appropriate PDF
> for that module, and view it in their browser.
> Unfortunately, the names are things like MOD00_TBLS_FRMX.pgm.pdf,
> PGR254.S1.T33.pgm.pdf, etc. This is _somewhat_ transparent to we
> developers, but certainly doesn't make it easy for the end users to find
> the appropriate section of documentation that they want
> I would like to implement a search facility using Lucene, but I'm not
> sure of a few things.
> Given that I can generate the index here, at the same time I convert any
> changed WP files to PDF, and upload it to our web site, what then do I
> do with it.
> I don't see, from my interrupted attempts at perusing the Lucene docs,
> any functions for a Java applet to access an index that is on a remote
> site.  We have no extra utilities available, such as a Java app server
> to run the search using RMI (I think I've read the Lucene docs enough to
> use the buzzword correctly. :-> )
> It seems that I am going to have to write an applet that will download
> the index (2M, 1M zipped) to a users local hard drive, then use that
> index to find the appropriate PDF file, then download the PDF file, and
> start it in the users browser.
> I'm assuming a signed applet, since as far as I can tell from my
> reading, an unsigned applet won't let any write, or reads, to the local
> hard drive occur.
> Does this sound feasible?
> Would I be better off using Java app, and lava web start, to download a
> jarred index, and take it from there?
> I'm fishing for feasibility ideas right now, and any help will be
> greatly appreciated.
> Dave @ TSC in Palm Harbor, FL
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Why don't you just integrate the Lucene index into your website - So the 
users just do a search on a page on your website - this executes the 
Lucene search on your web server, presents the results, and then they 
click the link for the PDF that they want.

I don't see any reason to take the index to the client here.


Daniel Armbrust
Biomedical Informatics
Mayo Clinic Rochester

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