From the IDG News Service (via ITWorld):
Free software activists have released a peer-to-peer search engine to take on Google, Yahoo, Bing and others.
The free, distributed search engine, YaCy, takes a new approach to search. Rather than using a central server, its search results come from a network of independent “peers,” users who have downloaded the YaCy software. The aim is that no single entity gets to decide what gets listed, or in which order results appear.
The project is supported by the Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE), which is concerned that dominant search engines have too much control and power over what information Internet users can find online. “That company will also know what you’re currently interested in. The search terms used tell others a lot about what you’re up to. Targeted advertising is only the most benign use of this data,” explained Karsten Gerloff, FSFE president.
The YaCy network currently has around 600 ‘peers’, but project organizers expect this to grow along the lines of other free software projects that aim to replace centrally-run services. For example, identi.ca (status.net) offers a free software alternative to Twitter; diaspora (joindiaspora.com) and many others provide a free, distributed alternative to Facebook.
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Learn More and Demo: Search.YaCy.com