Scalable multimodal search with distributed indexing by sparse hashing

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Multimedia search systems must deal with an increasingly large and heterogeneous amount of data. Several challenges exist when deploying real-world search engines for such data. Existing literature does not properly tackle the many efficiency issues that such task requires. In this paper, we address several of the key efficiency aspects required to deploy a distributed search engine, capable of handling several millions of multimedia documents. The search engine builds on a framework designed to: first, ease the distribution of documents and queries across cluster-nodes, second, index media efficiently for fast similarity search and third aggregate ranked results from several heterogeneous sources. Moreover, the proposed framework is flexible enough to support several state-of-the-art indexing and aggregation techniques. At the heart of the indexing architecture lies an inverse index structure optimized for sparse hashes, that speeds up the retrieval of similar descriptors. To leverage the distributed nature of the search framework, the proposed aggregation technique offers a low temporal complexity overhead and it is agnostic to the index type (a key aspect to support simultaneous modalities). A comprehensive evaluation with both general IR metrics and efficiency metrics, provides a unique assessment of the several efficiency bottlenecks faced by a search engine. In addition, we test the scalability of the search framework to multiple index sizes, i.e., up to 5 million documents per cluster-node.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationICMR 2015 - Proceedings of the 2015 ACM International Conference on Multimedia Retrieval
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery, Inc
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781450332743
Publication statusPublished - 22 Jun 2015
Event5th ACM International Conference on Multimedia Retrieval, ICMR 2015 - Shanghai, China
Duration: 23 Jun 201526 Jun 2015


Conference5th ACM International Conference on Multimedia Retrieval, ICMR 2015


  • Distributed search
  • Rank fusion
  • Scalable search
  • Sparse hashing


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