Dessy : desktop search and synchronization

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Title: Dessy : desktop search and synchronization
Author: Lagerspetz, Eemil
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Faculty of Science, Department of Computer Science
Thesis level: Master's thesis
Abstract: Current smartphones have a storage capacity of several gigabytes. More and more information is stored on mobile devices. To meet the challenge of information organization, we turn to desktop search. Users often possess multiple devices, and synchronize (subsets of) information between them. This makes file synchronization more important. This thesis presents Dessy, a desktop search and synchronization framework for mobile devices. Dessy uses desktop search techniques, such as indexing, query and index term stemming, and search relevance ranking. Dessy finds files by their content, metadata, and context information. For example, PDF files may be found by their author, subject, title, or text. EXIF data of JPEG files may be used in finding them. User–defined tags can be added to files to organize and retrieve them later. Retrieved files are ranked according to their relevance to the search query. The Dessy prototype uses the BM25 ranking function, used widely in information retrieval. Dessy provides an interface for locating files for both users and applications. Dessy is closely integrated with the Syxaw file synchronizer, which provides efficient file and metadata synchronization, optimizing network usage. Dessy supports synchronization of search results, individual files, and directory trees. It allows finding and synchronizing files that reside on remote computers, or the Internet. Dessy is designed to solve the problem of efficient mobile desktop search and synchronization, also supporting remote and Internet search. Remote searches may be carried out offline using a downloaded index, or while connected to the remote machine on a weak network. To secure user data, transmissions between the Dessy client and server are encrypted using symmetric encryption. Symmetric encryption keys are exchanged with RSA key exchange. Dessy emphasizes extensibility. Also the cryptography can be extended. Users may tag their files with context tags and control custom file metadata. Adding new indexed file types, metadata fields, ranking methods, and index types is easy. Finding files is done with virtual directories, which are views into the user’s files, browseable by regular file managers. On mobile devices, the Dessy GUI provides easy access to the search and synchronization system. This thesis includes results of Dessy synchronization and search experiments, including power usage measurements. Finally, Dessy has been designed with mobility and device constraints in mind. It requires only MIDP 2.0 Mobile Java with FileConnection support, and Java 1.5 on desktop machines.
URI: URN:NBN:fi-fe201009142435
Date: 2009-10-14
Rights: This publication is copyrighted. You may download, display and print it for Your own personal use. Commercial use is prohibited.

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