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Apache Solr 3 Enterprise Search Server by Eric Pugh, David Smiley

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Chapter 6. Faceting

Faceting is Solr's killer-feature. It's a must-have feature for most search implementations, especially those with structured data like in e-commerce, yet there are few products that have this capability, especially in open source. Of course search fundamentals, including highlighting, are critical too but they tend to be taken for granted. Faceting enhances search results with aggregated information over all the documents found in the search, not the entire index. It can answer questions about the MusicBrainz data such as:

  • How many releases are official, bootleg, or promotional?
  • What were the top five most common countries in which the releases occurred?
  • Over the past ten years, how many were released in each year?
  • How many releases ...

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