Thursday, January 17, 2013

Visual Fusion’s MultiSearch leverages powerful Bing search capabilities

A few weeks ago, in his blog post, my colleague Scott Caulk wrote about the new MultiSearch tool that is part of IDV Solutions’ latest product: Visual Command Center 2.0 risk and physical security visualization and Visual Fusion 5.7 data visualization.

MultiSearch works across internal and external data feeds to help you find the information you’re seeking. Scott highlighted MultiSearch’s capabilities to search for and through all your data feeds, to search and trim by dates, to find items by numerical and categorical attributes, and to perform advanced Boolean-like searches with logical operators such as AND, NOT, and OR.

Bing Maps and its location services API are tightly integrated with MultiSearch. And those of you familiar with the Fly To tool in previous versions of Visual Command Center and Visual Fusion will appreciate that MultiSearch encompasses all the capabilities of Fly To…and more.
A few capabilities of the powerful MultiSearch - Bing duo that might go unnoticed include the ability to search and fly to locations by codes.

Three-character country codes – you’ll recognize USA, GBR, FRA, and others from their use in the Olympics – are governed by the ISO 3166-1 standard. You can simply enter NZL in MultiSearch, click the fly-to button, and your view will shift to the geographic center of New Zealand. MultiSearch works with the less-used “Alpha 2-codes” for countries as well.

Other code sets of interest in MultiSearch are the IATA and ICAO airport codes. Typing in LAX will take you to the airport designated by the familiar three-letter IATA code – Los Angeles International. Less well known are the ICAO four-letter codes. Fear not! Visual Fusion and Bing team up to find and instantly take you to Nice, France when you enter LFMN, the ICAO code for Côte d'Azur International Airport.

MultiSearch and Bing also recognize and leverage zip codes. And it’s completely interactive when you have Visual Command Center or Visual Fusion’s included Boundaries & Demographics layer for US Zips turned on and you’re at an appropriate zoom level.

As you start to type in a zip code, 488, Visual Fusion will begin to filter out all the codes that don’t start with or include those digits.


You’ll see the matches appear in the “Find feed items” results. Continue typing into MultiSearch 4882, and the list grows smaller.


Complete the entry to 48824, and now we’ve isolated the zip code for Michigan State University’s main campus in East Lansing.


By clicking on the item in the Find feed items list, I can turn the zip code into a spatial query on the map – great for isolating things that may be important to me…the locations of assets, people, or other categories.


These are just a few examples of how Bing and MultiSearch team up to provide an intuitive, easy-to-use yet powerful data visualization experience. How have you been using MultiSearch in your operations?

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