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Re: Inverted index to accelerate guix package search

From: zimoun
Subject: Re: Inverted index to accelerate guix package search
Date: Wed, 15 Jan 2020 12:54:52 +0100


On Wed, 15 Jan 2020 at 06:44, Arun Isaac <address@hidden> wrote:

> > Well, the issue is 'scoring' a query.
> I think the issue of whether to use an inverted index is orthogonal to
> the quest to improve the relevance of the search results. Implementing
> tf-idf like you suggested could greatly benefit from having fast
> searches.

I think it is not so orthogonal. In general, a fast and good system is
a combination of relevant scoring adapted to the good data structure,

However, I agree that adding an inverted index will improve the
current situation of "guix search" -- keeping the current scoring
function -- and ease the end-user experience.

> Pierre Neidhardt <address@hidden> writes:
> > By the way, what about using Xapian in Guix?
> >
> >
> >
> > If it's relevant, maybe we can follow up with a discussion in a new
> > thread.
> I feel xapian is too much work (considering that we don't yet have guile
> bindings) compared to our own simple implementation of an inverted
> index. But, of course, I am biased since I wrote the inverted index
> code! :-)

It depends on how long run we are talking. :-)
Xapian avoids to reinvent the wheel. ;-)

> But, on a more serious note, if we move to xapian, we will not be able
> to support regular expression based search queries that we support
> today.

I am not convinced...

> On the question of whether xapian is too heavy, I think we should make
> it an optional dependency of Guix so that it remains possible to build
> and use a more minimalistic Guix for those interested in such things.

Guix comes with SQLite and it is ok.
The question is: how Xapian is minimalist. :-)
(need some investigation)

All the best,

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