Online encyclopedia Wikipedia has recently launched a $2.5 million program to build Internet’s first transparent search engine, ‘Wikimedia Discovery’. Popularly known as ‘Knowledge Engine,’ the search engine has received a grant of $250,000 from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation last November.
This search engine will allow users to explore material located on Wikipedia and it’s sister websites. The Wikimedia Foundation assures that this search engine will maintain transparency about the origin of information and provide access to metadata. It will also keep away advertisements and safeguard user privacy. The search engine emphasizes community building and sharing of information. It will face stiff competition with Alphabet’s Google, Microsoft’s Bing, and other commercial search engines.
This is Wikipedia’s second attempt at building a search engine. It has initially launched a Wikia Search project in 2009. The project was abandoned after it failed to attract users. When this project was dropped, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales quoted that one day he would return to this plan. After seven years he is making a comeback with ‘Knowledge Engine’.