You’ve heard about Yacy – the new peer to peer search engine, right?
In a nutshell, they believe that Google (and bing and yahoo – to a lesser extent) have become the ‘gatekeepers’ of information on the internet, allowing access only to the content they deem worthy. On their site they declare:
Only a decentralized search engine technology can ensure free access to knowledge
…and honestly, it’s hard to find fault with that statement.
That’s what YaCy is attempting to be. An open-source, decentralized, peer to peer search engine that eliminates both tracking and censorship. That’s right – this search engine is powered only by the processing power of the computers that are running it.
Always one to help out the open-source community, I decided to give it a try. After clearing out some hard drive space (it asks that 30 gigs of free space be available on the drive you’re installing to – I’m not sure why, and I’m not sure I want to know why, either), I installed YaCy without any real issues. Installation took less than a minute, and I’m running a Windows desktop. It also runs on Mac and linux, for all you hipsters and geeks.
Eco-saving, peer to peer powered search may sound great in theory, but in real life it’s pretty darn sluggish to use when only a few thousand people are running it. It also makes searching for anything an exercise in frustration as the content of the search engines itself and the ranking of the sites included is entirely left up to the community of YaCy users. After 5 minutes of attempting to get a single search result, I quit. Unfortunately, it continued to run in the background for another 10 minutes or so before finally closing.
So, is there a chance that YaCy can actually gain momentum and be a small ray of sunshine to fight back the ever growing shadow of our dark search overload – Google? For the answer, let’s check out the search volume query popularity of ‘YaCy’ during the last 30 days and see how much steam it’s gained.
Well, that sucks. Guess we can just move on, now.