Wikipedia’s Cooking Up A ‘Knowledge Engine’ For All Your Factoid Needs

Wikipedia’s good for a lot: where else can you instate Dollarydoos as the official Australian currency, show off how ruthless our pollies are, or use Peking Duk’s deets to slide your way backstage?

Nowhere. Nowhere is the answer, and bless Wiki for it. 

Still, being the place to get the run down on… well, literally anything, might not be enough for the company any more. Recent murmurings suggest the site is about to go gung-ho into the search engine business, and they’re cooking up a $3.5 million ‘Knowledge Engine’. 

That’s a big deal, given the company’s take on the ol’ “knowledge is power” chestnut. Allowing free, open access to info is very much Wiki’s M.O, and ABC reports that stance will be reflected in the new project. 

Specifically, a grant proposal obtained by Aunty details the engine would be bereft of advertising, prioritise user privacy, while also allowing users to see exactly how and why certain results come up – without the possibility of certain pages being bumped up artificially.

If successful, the impending result would certainly herald the arrival of our artificially intelligent overlords shake up the internet landscape bigtime. The vibe given by the project seems to focus on curated, user-submitted content instead of relying on a site’s popularity or keywords to bring it to your attention. 

Although co-founder Jimmy Wales has recently downplayed any renewed move into the search sphere, possible front-pages are certainly Google-esque.

It’s early days yet and details are still percolating, but we could be in for new and exciting ways to play Six Degrees Of Separation From Hitler. 

Source: ABC. 
Photo: Youtube