PRESS RELEASE: New search engine helps bridge the language gap in Wikipedia


17 February 2006
San Francisco, USA


Rapid Intelligence, a search technology company with a focus on data mining and computational linguistics, has today released a beta of, a wiki search engine.

The technology is designed from the ground up to work with wiki-based content and has a number of unique features of interest to researchers and Wikipedia editors. It is the only search engine to index machine translated content, so that users may search for terms in their own language and see results translated from English.

"Wikipedia's growth in English is well documented, but other languages lag far behind. The next biggest is German, roughly a third of the size of the English one. Spanish is a mere tenth of the size" says Luke Metcalfe, founder of the site. "There is thus a massive gap in the market."

The resultant content is machine translated, so it contains imperfections, but are still much better than no article at all and further, provide a starting point for editors to translate manually into their own language. Languages included are German, French, Japanese, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, Spanish, Greek, Korean, Chinese and Russian.

In addition, some country-specific topics are covered best in their native language. Qwika makes this content available to English speakers, rolling it all into the one index. Articles from all 11 languages are included in the English language version.

The engine also includes WikiTravel and aims to include all sizeable wikis. "Wikis are cropping up on a variety of topics and approaches to community. We'd like to see this diversity flourish while still providing the user with a central location for such public encyclopedia-style content".

Some examples: - Finds the Spanish version (no english article exists) - German translated version contains more information than the english one. - Wikipedia and WikiTravel - Many languages and talk page.

About Rapid Intelligence

Rapid Intelligence is a web and search technology company. Its other titles include FactBites, featured in BusinessWeek, a search engine/encyclopedia hybrid that provides point form topic summaries as results, and NationMaster, the world's largest database for comparing countries online, which has received warm reviews from CNN, the BBC, The New York Times and the American Library Association.

About Wikipedia

Wikipedia is an online encyclopedia written by volunteers on an ongoing basis, backed by the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation. Its aim is to create and distribute a freely available encyclopedia in as many languages as possible. According to, Wikipedia has been ranked in the top 30 most trafficked websites throughout 2006.



Luke Metcalfe
press at
Phone: +612 8221 9721