A CeBIT delegate receives their customised flyer from SciFly.
Customised flyers on demand
CSIRO’s SciFly combines information retrieval software with text-based search technology to produce a personalised flyer on the spot.
15 July 2010 | Updated 14 October 2011
CSIRO researchers in information and communications technology (ICT) developed SciFly to demonstrate how the results of a search for information could be presented as more than just a list of results like the output of traditional search engines.
Knowing more about the needs of a searcher means the information found and its presentation can be adapted to suit. In this case in producing a customised flyer.
SciFly dynamically adjusts the amount and detail of content based on the range of topics selected, it is not simply assembling preconfigured content.
SciFly is a demonstration system designed to operate as a touch-screen information kiosk at an event such as a tradeshow or conference (it also has a web interface for remote access).
When a searcher nominates their topic(s) of interest, SciFly uses natural language processing technology (that which searches text-based information) to gather information and assemble the most relevant content onto a double-sided A4 flyer. It also adds contact information, web links and higher level context, all tailored to support the information presented.
A flyer is printed on the spot while a portable document format (PDF) version is emailed to the searcher along with a plain text summary.
SciFly is not assembling preconfigured content, it is dynamically adjusting the amount and detail of content based on the range of topics selected.
SciFly uses CSIRO’s Myriad software framework.
Developed in collaboration with Professor Keith Vander Linden from Calvin College, Michigan, USA, Myriad is a flexible platform technology that allows context-guided searches of textual information.
Like our other information retrieval technology, Myriad specialises in answering complex information needs, where more than one piece of information is required.
Applications using Myriad are able to find and extract appropriate information from different sources including databases, web pages and text documents.
SciFly featured over several years at Australia’s big ICT tradeshow, CeBIT. During just one year’s show, SciFly generated more than 500 unique brochures for interested delegates.
The Myriad software platform, and the knowledge gained in developing the SciFly demonstration system, continues to be used in CSIRO research today.
Read more in Search technology that finds what you’re looking for.