STARTS: Stanford Proposal for Internet Meta-Searching

Luis Gravano, Chen Chuan K. Chang, Andreas Paepcke, Héctor García-Molina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Document sources are available everywhere, both within the internal networks of organizations and on the Internet. Even individual organizations use search engines from different vendors to index their internal document collections. These search engines are typically incompatible in that they support different query models and interfaces, they do not return enough information with the query results for adequate merging of the results, and finally, in that they do not export metadata about the collections that they index (e.g., to assist in resource discovery). This paper describes STARTS, an emerging protocol for Internet retrieval and search that facilitates the task of querying multiple document sources. STARTS has been developed in a unique way. It is not a standard, but a group effort coordinated by Stanford's Digital Library project, and involving over 11 companies and organizations. The objective of this paper is not only to give an overview of the STARTS protocol proposal, but also to discuss the process that led to its definition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-218
Number of pages12
JournalSIGMOD Record (ACM Special Interest Group on Management of Data)
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1997
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Information Systems


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