Signaling its intent to deliver a new class of search-based 3-D applications, Dassault Systèmes acquired the French-based Exalead, a provider of search platforms and search-based applications for the consumer and corporate market, for about €135 million.
Exalead is best known for multi-constraint search, which is more powerful than Internet-based search because it answers queries in multiple dimensions, allowing for more precise answers. Specifically, the Exalead platform was designed from the ground up to apply advanced semantic processing to Web-scale data volumes, which allows it to deliver a unique Web user experience, officials said. The acquisition comes on the heels of a partnership between Exalead and Dassault announced a month ago, whereby the pair promised to work to integrate the Exalead technology into Dassault's PLM and 3-D software products.
Exalead's best-known product is CloudView, a search engine that can be embedded in other applications. CloudView collects unstructured and structured data from any source, in any format and volume, and automatically transforms it into a single-structured information resource. This resource then continually evolves and adapts as data evolves and it can be directly searched or used to develop new, search-based applications.
That, perhaps, is where Dassault sees the most potential. Although there were few product details or a specific deliverables roadmap provided, Dassault officials did say that moving forward, the firm will put a greater emphasis on search convergence, tying together internal and external searching to provide customers with the knowledge they need as well as to aid in searching through reams of design data. There will also be future efforts combining Dassault's 3-D technology with the Exalead technology to deliver a whole new dimension of searching, which has promise when applied to a design data repository like ENVOIA. There's also potential for marrying the Exalead search technology to 3DVIA
, technology that allows users and companies to create online 3-D experiences.