For some search engines, it’s about recovery, not discovery. But for Sophia, provider of enterprise search products and software, discovery is a priority.

Sophia Searches for Context

Sophia Search, a Contextual Discovery Engine (CDE) designed to identify intrinsic terms in unstructured content in order to make it easier to recover and consolidate. In other words, it looks for meaning, not just keywords, in an attempt to show the user what they didn’t know existed. Based upon semiotics, a linguistics term for the study of signs and symbols, Sophia Search sees the contextual relationship -- the meaning and context -- between words.

We spoke with David Patterson, CEO of Sophia Search, and learned why Sophia Search can save companies money, as well as enhance the way they find information.

Find What You've Been Missing

Mr. Patterson describes an episode of the Simpsons in which the characters satirize the movie Psycho. If the viewer had never seen Psycho they may have a limited understanding of what's being depicted. Search is similar. A user can find information relevant to their search terms, but there may be even more information that’s related, which could provide more context to your search.

With its three dimensional solution, the CDE discovers, consolidates and optimizes information. Using complex mathematics, the CDE can replicate the way humans understand and recognize text, allowing for intelligent interpretations of texts and their meaning and thus providing more natural, intuitive and contextually relevant results.

SOPHIA Screenshot 1.jpg


A user that searches using the word "kidney" may find results that are related, but may not use the actual word.

For other discovery engines, the end result is designed to help the user find other things they didn’t know they wanted. But with Sophia Search, the contextual search helps the enterprise. Though initially designed for those within the life sciences, legal and ePublishing industries, Sophia Search can be applied to a wide range of uses and users. In fact, the implications for integrating their search application into a company infrastructure are quite vast.

Considering that companies don’t always know what kind of information they are storing, Sophia Search can discover new information, as well as understand the different contexts. It can also send contextual search alerts, designed to make you aware of new information added or discovered matching your query or context. Finally, by being able to detect duplicate and near-duplicate information companies can start to optimize their information landscape, while saving time and money.

Overall, Sophia Search aims to simplify data management processes by increasing findability and reducing clutter. Because Sophia Search is an information management tool disguised as a search engine, companies may not inherently know that their unstructured content is be discovered in new ways, but eventually they'll begin to reap its benefits.

Sophia Search pricing starts at US$ 50,000.