Gigablast by Matt Wells (formerly Infoseek) was founded in 2000 and is based in New Mexico. With its own crawler technology, Gigablast had over 12 billion indexed pages in 2006, making it the second largest search engine in the world, according to its founder. Gigablast also relies on environmentally friendly wind power. Gigablast offers large-scale, high-performance, real-time information retrieval technology, a variety of features such as topic generation and the ability to index a wide variety of document formats. Search engines such as Ixquick, Clusty, Zuula, Snap and Blingo use or use Gigablast as the underlying search technology. In 2013, the search engine source code was released as open source under an Apache license. Gigablast has been the search technology of the Internet archives since 2015.

Language English

Launched 2000
Closed No

Developer Wells, Matt

Country of Origin US America

2000 - [...] Wells, Matt

Topic Universal

Region No Limitation

Technical functionalities
Crawler-based, algorithmic SeEn
Open source based search engine

Used SeEn Gigablast

Robot: Gigabot (Source)

Older Version Internet Archive / WebCite

Matt Wells: »2000. Founded Gigablast. Boostrapped with $30k. Developed almost all the code myself. Circa 2006 Gigablast had over 12 billion pages indexed and was the second largest search engine in the world. At one time Gigablast also ranked in the top 2000 most popular websites worldwide. To this date, Gigablast continues to serve millions of queries per day using almost all wind power.« Source

»Founded in 2000, Matt Wells created Gigablast to index hundreds of billions of pages with the least amount of hardware possible. Gigablast provides large-scale, high-performance, real-time information retrieval technology and services for partner sites. The company offers a variety of features including topic generation and the ability to index multiple document formats. This search delivery mechanism gives a partner "turn key" search capability and the capacity to instantly offer search at maximum scalability with minimum cost. Clients range from NASDAQ 100 listed corporations to boutique companies.

Gigablast is one of a handful of search engines in the United States that maintains its own searchable index of over a billion pages.« Source

»2013. The NSA reviewed Gigablast in its book, "Untangling the Web" which was declassified under the Freedom of Information Act.« Source

»Gigablast is a small independent web search engine based in New Mexico. It was founded in 2000 by Matt Wells, formerly of Infoseek. Its source code was released under the Apache license in 2013.

Gigablast provides, or has provided, search results to other companies, such as Ixquick, Clusty, Zuula, Snap, and Blingo.

In 2003, New York Times columnist Lee Dembart mentioned that "Gigablast has its adherents", but opined that Google is "head and shoulders" above it, and adds that Google's search results are more complete.

In July 2013, the Gigablast search engine source code in C/C++ was released as open source under version 2.0 of the Apache license.« Source

»2015: Shortly after releasing its web search engine as open source and available for free download, Gigablast, Inc. has inked a deal with the Internet Archive. Gigablast has agreed to provide search for the archive's 400+ billion web documents. After conducting tests, the Internet Archive found that its users prefer the quality of Gigablast's search results over the leading open source search engine solutions.

"We're proud to work with the archive to help unleash its true potential. Right now you can't effectively search their hundreds of billions of documents. That's going to change," says Matt Wells, CEO of Gigablast. "We are providing them with the technical support to get Gigablast up and running. When we are done, they will be the biggest search engine ever created. They've tried the other search solutions out there and they can't scale anywhere close to Gigablast's levels. Gigablast is a proven, free solution that makes information discovery easy, and saves you time and money." Wells continues, "On a further note, there has been some confusion that Gigablast was recently acquired by a company called Yippy. This is untrue. Gigablast is still a thriving independent entity and has no affiliation with Yippy, Inc. (YIPI)"« Source

»1997. [Matt Wells] Worked at Infoseek for a few years on the core search team with about 7 other engineers, including Robin Li, the founder of Baidu, the largest search engine in China. [He] found it amazing how much Infoseek relied on search to feed its website, but yet the core team was so small.« Source


Critical points

Features & Functionality

2015: »Gigablast is now available as an open source search engine on Download it today. Finally a robust, scalable search solution in C/C++ that has been in development and used commercially since 2000.« Source


»... Not much about the product placement in Dolphin Tale is particularly noteworthy. The numerous Dell computers provide a welcome respite from the typical MacBooks.

Also, on those Dells, audiences will find Dolphin Tale‘s child star doing Internet searches not on Google, but on a lesser-known Gigablast. “The Green Search Engine,” Gigablast is “the leading clean-energy search engine” with wind energy providing 90 percent of the power its servers use...« Source

References & further Publications

Wikipedia (EN):
Wikipedia (Others): n.a.

Other Sources

Price, Gary (2003): A Conversation With Gigablast's Matt Wells. Online available at Search Engine Watch. URL:
Interview: Matt Wells of Gigablast. Online available at enFin (via Internet Archive). URL:
Notess, Greg R. (2004) Review of Gigablast. Online available at Search Engine Showdown. URL:
Mentioned in papers on Google Scholar URL:
Mentioned in books in Google Book Search URL:
Randy Burge (2007): New Mexico's soil fertile for brainchilds URL:
Steve Kirsch, "A Conversation with Matt Wells". In: ACM Queue 2:2 (May 5, 2004) URL:
Greg R. Notess (2008): Review of Gigablast URL:
Mary Ellen Bates, "Gigablast Blasts Off Again". In: Online, May/Jun 2008, 64pp. URL:
2005. Matt Wells Interview in Business 2.0. URL:*/
2013: Gigablast Now an Open Source Search Engine URL:
Tiffany Chisum (2007): Blasting into the big leagues Matt Wells and Gigablast. In: New Mexico Tech's Newsletter URL:
Metamend: Gigablast Search Engine Optimization Advice URL:

Created: 2013-03-18