The Wikia project aims to develop a search engine, crawlers and other indexing tools through a collaborative, open-source process.
Wikia plans to announce that it has named Jeremie Miller, founder of the open-source Jabber instant-message platform, to collaborate on building a new open-source Internet search engine.
Wikia was founded by Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
Wikia selected Miller because of his experience building infrastructure technology, not just desktop software. It also was drawn to his passion and enthusiasm for open source, which will translate to leadership for the project.
Contributors will likely include graduate students, as well large companies that want to include search functionality in their products but don’t want to pay royalties to a search company, according to Wikia CEO Gil Penchina. Another constituency will likely be smaller search companies that don’t have the time or money to do everything required for a complete search service themselves.
“Everyone has to crawl the Web, but it costs a lot of money,”
Penchina said. “There has been a lot of interest in academia for better tools.”
The ultimate goal of the project is to bring “absolute transparency, collaboration and human intelligence to complement search algorithms,”
according to a press release.
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