Uriverse was a large experimental website based on the content from Wikipedia designed to push the Drupal content management system to its limits.
Uriverse is sadly no longer in existance. While it was active it served as a testbed for Drupal performance on large datasets. It is based upon a data import from DBpedia, a semantic version of Wikipedia. Uriverse contained over 13M nodes and contained 90 languages covering around 3M primary subjects, making it one of the largest Drupal installations ever built. The end result was that Drupal proved itself to be a flexible system which can handle large amounts of data so long as some bottlenecks are worked around and the hardware, particularly RAM, is sufficient to handle database indexes.
The site itself was able to do some cool thigs with the data, providing functionality which was not present in the standard Wikipedia version. We were able to leverage the internal capabilities of the Drupal content management system to:
- Display places on maps for certain subsets of data.
- Display interactive timelines of events such as battles and wars.
- Provide a powerful faceted search interface based on laguage, content type and other selected categories.
- Provide content recommendations based on "More Like This" search results.
- Provide a ratings system for people, places and organisations.
- Hook into external systems for weather and product recommendations
Perhaps the most impressive result of the experiment was the sterling performance extracted from the Solr search engine. It was able to return results for queries with several filters in the blink of an eye. Solr is now a standard part of Morpht's search strategy.