Thursday, May 06, 2004

Nutch Like many, I am discouraged by the way search engines work. Unfortunately, all of the search engines are accepting advertising money and this has lead to a more commercialized set off results for end users. Even Google allows advertisers to bid on keywords. The rest also allow for advertisers to buy their way into their directories. Getting into Yahoo's directory is $299 a year. I blogged a project today that is trying to come up with an open source non-commercial search engine. I wish them luck.

From the site:

Nutch is a nascent effort to implement an open-source web search engine.

Web search is a basic requirement for internet navigation, yet the number of web search engines is decreasing. Today's oligopoly could soon be a monopoly, with a single company controlling nearly all web search for its commercial gain. That would not be good for users of the internet.

Nutch provides a transparent alternative to commercial web search engines. Only open source search results can be fully trusted to be without bias. (Or at least their bias is public.) All existing major search engines have proprietary ranking formulas, and will not explain why a given page ranks as it does. Additionally, some search engines determine which sites to index based on payments, rather than on the merits of the sites themselves. Nutch, on the other hand, has nothing to hide and no motive to bias its results or its crawler in any way other than to try to give each user the best results possible.

Nutch aims to enable anyone to easily and cost-effectively deploy a world-class web search engine. This is a substantial challenge. To succeed, Nutch software must be able to:

- fetch several billion pages per month
- maintain an index of these pages
- search that index up to 1000 times per second
- provide very high quality search results
- operate at minimal cost

This is a challenging proposition. If you believe in the merits of this project, please help out, either as a developer or with a donation.

No comments: