LinkedIn and MySpace upgrade search with open-source Lucene

Lucene is the latest open-source project to become popular with Web developers.

TechCrunch reports that LinkedIn just upgraded its people search, but fails to mention the technology behind the upgrade: Lucene, the open-source search project. Nor is LinkedIn alone: MySpace has also used Lucene to revamp its search functionality, as Ars Technica reported earlier in June.

Indeed, borrowing from open source is now standard operating procedure for Web companies. What is interesting in the use of Lucene is how the Web is branching beyond the familiar LAMP stack to build in technologies like Lucene, Yahoo!'s User Interface Library, and other open-source components.

Arguably, the Web could not exist without open-source software, which is why I continue to believe it's critical that we find ways to encourage open-source contributions in a Web world that isn't bound by Open Source 1.0's licensing. It's therefore unfortunate that the Web lacks the "Software 1.0"'s licensing restrictions.

Perhaps the market will sort all this out, with Google and others seeing a strategic interest in open-source contributions, despite a lack of compulsion from open-source licensing. Perhaps. I guess we'll just have to wait and see.

Tech Culture
About the author

    Matt Asay is chief operating officer at Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux operating system. Prior to Canonical, Matt was general manager of the Americas division and vice president of business development at Alfresco, an open-source applications company. Matt brings a decade of in-the-trenches open-source business and legal experience to The Open Road, with an emphasis on emerging open-source business strategies and opportunities. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. You can follow Matt on Twitter @mjasay.


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