Retriever is a search engine that was developed to improve search results for content with lots of metadata. The search engine is already being used in the Bedrock Addons gaming service.

How does it work?

It works by reading all entries in a database table, and then returning results based on what you type, and matching it to the data in the table. Everything gets included. For example, if you record the name, date, description, update time, and images in content, all of that will be factored into the search listing. Data like what camera a picture was taken with is also included, if relevant.

All of this data is taken in, weighed for importance, and then sent back to the user as a list of search results. While most other mobile app search engines just search through titles, Retriever searches through all available data to offer better results, and include some things that you might enjoy even if they aren't perfectly what you asked for.

Examples

  • If you include images of trees, and name them things like "tree.png" or "nature.jpg", that will be factored into the search results of the entire content when a user searches for that type of content, even if the title or description doesn't mention anything about trees or nature.
  • If you are a user searching for fighting games, Retriever will likely throw in a few search results (roughly 5%) that may be loosely related, but will show a majority of related content. This helps introduce the user to content that they may enjoy, but might've not been looking for.