VERONICA

Rob Harper Rob.Harper at CSC.FI
Thu Nov 19 00:36:28 EST 1992


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>From: foster at cs.unr.edu (Steve Foster)
>Newsgroups: comp.infosystems.gopher
>Subject: Veronica:  an Archie for Gopher
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This is a new service that should help to relieve the resource-discovery 
bottleneck in the rapidly-expanding gopher web.   It adds global indexing 
(by title keywords) to gopher's distributed information model.

Introductory announcement follows:

............................................................................

			About the Veronica service


VERONICA:  Very Easy Rodent-Oriented Net-wide Index to Computerized Archives.

Veronica offers a keyword search of most gopher-server menus in the entire
gopher web.  As Archie is to ftp archives, Veronica is to gopherspace.  
Unlike Archie, the search results can connect you directly to the data source.
Imagine an Archie search that lets you select the data, not just the host sites,
directly from a menu.  Because Veronica is accessed through a gopher client, it 
is easy to use, and gives access to all types of data supported by the gopher
protocol.

Veronica was designed as a response to the problem of resource discovery
in the rapidly-expanding gopher web.  Frustrated comments in the net 
news-groups have recently reflected the need for such a service.  Additional
motivation came from the comments of naive gopher users, several of whom
assumed that a simple-to-use service would provide a means to find resources
"without having to know where they are."

The result of a Veronica search is an automatically-generated gopher menu,
customized according to the user's keyword specification.  Items on this
menu may be drawn from many gopher servers.  These are functional gopher items,
immediately accessible via the gopher client ... just double-click to open
directories, read files, or perform other searches -- across hundreds of
gopher servers.  You need never know which server is actually involved in
filling your request for information.  Items that are appear particularly
interesting can be saved in the user's bookmark list.

Notice that these are NOT full-text searches of data at gopher-server sites,
just as Archie does not index the contents of ftp sites, but only the names
of files at those sites.  Veronica indexes the TITLES on all levels of the
menus, for most gopher sites in the Internet.  258 gophers are indexed by
Veronica on Nov. 17, 1992;  we have discovered over 500 servers and will 
index the full set in the near future.   We hope that Veronica will encourage
gopher administrators to use very descriptive titles on their menus. 

To try Veronica, select it from the "Other Gophers" menu on Minnesota's
gopher server, or point your gopher at:

Name=Veronica (search menu items in most of GopherSpace)
Type=1
Port=70
Path=1/Veronica
Host=futique.scs.unr.edu


Veronica is an experimental service, developed by Steve Foster and Fred Barrie
at University of Nevada.  As we expect that the load will soon outgrow our 
hardware, we will distribute the Veronica service across other sites in
the near future.

Please address comments to:   gophadm at futique.scs.unr.edu

November 17, 1992
Steve Foster




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