Simon Willison’s Weblog


tantivy-cli (via) I tried out this Rust based search engine today and I was very impressed.

Tantivy is the core project - it's an open source (MIT) Rust library that implements Lucene-style full text search, with a very full set of features: BM25 ranking, faceted search, range queries, incremental indexing etc.

tantivy-cli offers a CLI wrapper around the Rust library. It's not actually as full-featured as I hoped: it's intended as more of a demo than a full exposure of the library's features. The JSON API server it runs can only be used to run simple keyword or phrase searches for example, no faceting or filtering.

Tantivy's performance is fantastic. I was able to index the entire contents of my link blog in a fraction of a second.

I found this post from 2017 where Tantivy creator Paul Masurel described the initial architecture of his new search side-project that he created to help him learn Rust. Paul went on to found Quickwit, an impressive looking analytics platform that uses Tantivy as one of its core components.

The Python bindings for Tantivy look well maintained, wrapping the Rust library using maturin. Those are probably the best way for a developer like myself to really start exploring what it can do.

Also notable: the Hacker News thread has dozens of posts from happy Tantivy users reporting successful use on their projects.