Contextor™ is SN-Sphere's Investigators' Desktop teamwork intelligence system which includes an interactive information management system to add, store, compartmentalize, retrieve, share, collate, and disseminate any type of information as well as the full use of SN-Sphere's analytical tools. It is flexible and scaleable to meet a wide variety of customers and applications.
Interactive Teamwork Information System
In addition to its robust analysis capabilities, Contextor is an interactive teamwork information system which allows users to add any type of information to its internal central repository and use it for day to day work. The information can include documents, field reports, pictures, video, recordings or any other type of structured or unstructured data. The input of information is done easily using drag and drop, direct transfer from e-mails, or internal text editing.
Information may easily be organized in interactive link charts and time lines. Each element (information resource) and link on a chart can be opened to display and edit content, metadata, explanations, hyperlinks, database queries and more. User/s may add other types of information as needed in an ongoing process. Visual mapping (link charts) complements and completes the capabilities of spoken language to create and communicate knowledge. It promotes an understanding of relationships that formal textual or verbal phrasing is not generally capable of inducing.
The following example is a link chart of call data records, associated people and transcripts:
All of the data is automatically searchable by a free text search engine built into Contextor. Textual descriptions of non-textual information (photographs, recordings, etc.) facilitate their quick retrieval. The results of a search reveal all of the contexts (such as multiple cases) associated with a particular piece of information. This leads the user to contextually related information which was not found directly by the original search condition.
Contextor is closely integrated with typical desktop tools including MS Office, MS Outlook, Adobe Acrobat and others. Users can continue to work with Contextor together with whatever tools they are used to. There is no duplication of data entry or other tasks.
Contextor thus becomes a teamwork knowledgebase which accumulates information over years. Information collected for a particular task may be placed in one or more contexts or just stored in the central repository. An individual piece of information may become the missing piece in another task or analysis months or even years later.
Contextor is a networked application which is scaleable for individuals, multiple users, teams, departments and enterprises. Users can cooperate even when they are in different locations at different times.
The information stored in Contextor can be easily made into reports and disseminated according to needs. Information and charts can be collated into Word or HTML documents which can be sent by email or published to an FTP site directly from within Contextor.
Contextor includes a built-in interface to SN-Sphere's NAS and Models Manager . Users may create, edit and run analysis models. The analysis is executed by the NAS server and the results returned to Contextor where they are displayed in link charts, graphs, and/or grid formats. Contextor has an internal central Oracle repository in which the charts may be saved and reused in a variety of ways. The data produced by the analysis is completely integrated with all additional data and uses of Contextor.
Key Strengths of Contextor
Flexibility and Adaptability
Contextor includes a set of design tools which allow system administrators, integrators or others to design and change applications to meet the needs of a variety of applications and customers without programming. It is easy to add additional data sources, data types, link support information, entity types, search filters, etc. to an application. Application deployment and change is fast and relatively inexpensive. Total cost of ownership over the life span of the system is thus reduced significantly.
Ease of Use
Based on over a decade of field experience with a wide range of users, we have designed simple to use interfaces for a variety of work flows for use by non-computer professionals. The time needed for training is reduced and as a result, users are more likely to use Contextor and do so more efficiently and effectively.
Contextor is available in three different architectures which provide flexible solutions for a wide variety of situations.
In all three, the system includes a central repository for storing information - an Oracle database (personal, standard or enterprise version). All data is stored only in the repository, not on individual workstations or file servers. This makes the system more secure, more accessible and easier to back up the data.
Contextor is designed for integration with other systems. A robust set of web services and APIs are included in the well developed and mature SDK (Software Developers Kit).
In some cases, no single system is sufficient to meet all of the needs of a customer and it is critical to have technology that can be easily integrated together using industry standards. Svivot has done such integration many times and often, this is a deciding factor in customers deciding to use Contextor and SN-Sphere.
Investigators' Teamwork Desktop Functionality
Contextor is much more powerful and flexible than other systems. Here are a few examples:
A user can drag and drop any file into the repository and/or link chart including Word documents, other office documents, PDFs, pcitures, video and any other file format. The content of the original file is automatically stored in the Contextor repository in its original format. Textual documents are automatically indexed and available to the built-in powerful Oracle free text search engine . Users can click on any file and it is automatically opened and edited in its original format in the approriate application directly within Contextor.
All data is stored contextually - This means that any entity or document that appears on multilpe link charts (contexts/cases) are actually the same data object. As a result, Contextor automatically links the mutliple contexts in search reports and analysis processes. In some other systems, each case is saved separately and there is no automatic association between the same data/entities from different cases.
Advanced visualization capabilities include multiple layouts for the same link chart and creation of links that are curves and polylines (lines with angles) determined by the user.
Link multiple charts together which is very useful in organizing complex cases.
Add-on for Microsoft Outlook - The add-on automatically creates an additional tool bar in Outlook which allows users to automatically or manually export emails to Contextor. The emails can be imported as text documents (together with their attachments) or automatically reformatted into a structured field/intelligence report.
Directly email information from within Contextor.
Interactively design data input forms which can be used to input data for any type of structured information.
Intelligence/Field Report Add-On - Design, format, create and edit intelligence reports. Contextor can scan the content of the report, identify known entities and automatically link the entities to these reports. These links can then be used by Contextor's link analysis mechanisms.
Convert data into reports - Structured and unstructured data can be easily transferred to a Microsoft Word document as a report that the user may continue to edit and utilize as he sees fit.
Case Management System - SN-Sphere's flexible case management system is incorporated into Contextor. Contextor is a networked application which is scaleable for individuals, multiple users, teams, departments and enterprises. Users can cooperate even when they are in different locations at different times.
Integration with SN-Sphere Analysis Capabilities
Contextor can include a seemless interface with SN-Sphere 's analytical capabilities and/or other analytical tools. This is made possible by the system's openh architecture as described above.