The entire search-engine project that Wikia is working on will enter the open-source domain, drastically reducing the cost for just about anyone to make a search engine, said Gil Penchina, the company's CEO. Instead of paying millions of dollars to index the Web and create the software to build a search page, new search companies will find these items free online thanks to the open-source and free software communities. "In search, it still costs about $5 million to $10 million to build a site," said Penchina during an interview in Taipei. "We want to make it possible for anyone to build a search site for $500. We don't view Google as the competition; we view cost as the competition."
The project, which was started by Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales, consists of four components: the indexing of the Web, developing a search engine application, developing an algorithm, and having people filter sites and rank results.