London, January 12 : Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales has said that his main objective behind the launch of new search engine 'Wikia Search' is to provide netizens with a viable, transparent alternative to Google, rather than beat it.
He himself doubts whether his new search engine will ever be able to replace Google.
"What we're saying is we would be thrilled if we had 5 per cent of the search market. That would be a fabulous success," Nature magazine quoted him as saying.
While it is well known that Google is based on a system called PageRank, Wales insists that they do not explain their algorithms and make editorial decisions behind closed doors.
He has revealed that the backbone of Wikia Search is the open source Nutch search engine, and claimed that it is an open, democratic and participatory search engine.
Wikia Search, which has received frosty response from netizens since its launch on Monday, has a provision for internet users to comment on the search results.
Wales hopes that these comments will allow the searches to improve to a level that mean the 'low quality' statement on the homepage can be removed.
How exactly user data will be used isn't yet known.
However, Wales says: "What we're going to do first is to make those kinds of suggestion publicly available ... and basically see what that data looks like. It's very open ended. That's really something for the community to decide upon."
When asked what is going to be Wikipedia's next project, Wales said that he was too occupied at the time with Wikia Search to think of anything else.
"I haven't really thought beyond this project, which is absorbing all my time," Wales said.