SAP AG has co-developed a product with Intel Corp. to speed search capabilities. Separately, SAP is working with Cisco Systems to ease application installation and networking, SAP confirmed Thursday.
The project with Intel, code-name Euclid, is being tested with several customers. Intel is contributing its 64-bit processor technology, which lets software keep large amounts of data on the chip in main memory. SAP is contributing search technology and related algorithms.
Euclid is the vehicle through which SAP will fold fast, Google-like search and index capabilities into its enterprise applications. "We've created the capability of very fast search with Intel but [are] just now taking advantage of it," said Kaj van de Loo, vice president of market development engineering, at SAP Labs LLC. "Search is a big thing we've been working on. There is value in search that goes across text, similar to what Google is good at, and structured data in enterprise systems."
Main memory-based search and databases offer new possibilities, van de Loo said. But it's not searching faster that is intriguing to SAP. It's what companies do with the faster search: SAP can start building what van de Loo called "totally cool applications," which it couldn't create before for performance reasons.
"Intel's 64-bit chip enables you to put the entire search into memory, which enables quick search capabilities," said Gartner analyst Jeff Woods.
Tests have shown that SAP's technology can search and return information stored within gigabytes of data in "microseconds, compared with traditional database look-up technologies that can take forever" to search through millions and millions of records, van de Loo said.
Separately, SAP is working with Cisco Systems to develop a network application for small businesses van de Loo calls the "Cisco box," a router with a business application sitting on top.
The advantage for customers is fewer routers and applications to install and configure. Ideally, one physical box would include the router and the server with business applications installed and configured together and networking settings ready to go. All the customers need to do is plug it into power and the Internet and it's ready to go, van de Loo said.