Mon, Jul 30th 2007 4:41pm
Wikia, Jimmy Wales' for-profit venture, has been talking for awhile about taking on Google in the search space. The company believes it can do better by augmenting traditional algorithm-based search with wiki-like collaboration and human editors. So far, the company doesn't have anything to show for its efforts, but it recently announced the purchase of the open source web crawler Grub from LookSmart (remember them?). As part of the company's PR efforts, Wales has tried to make the case that existing search tools are "broken" and that another party needs to come along and fix it. This same line, that Google is broken for whatever reasons, gets repeated by every fledgling search startup out there. While Google has its share of problems (spam, etc.), it's unlikely that most users would see things as being so bad. In the end, neither FUD nor buzzwords, like "wiki", "open source" or "semantic web" will be enough to dethrone Google if the underlying product isn't clearly superior.
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