Job Board/Software Engineer, Search Platform at Wikimedia Foundation



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Wikimedia Foundation
emoji of a money mouthRemoteemoji of an envelopelhiraide@wikimedia.org

Our small team is passionate about making knowledge discoverable. We are responsible for Wikidata Query Service (a graph database that allows users to run arbitrary SPARQL queries on Wikidata) and for the search engine used on Wikipedia and its sister projects.

We are looking for a software engineer to help us bring the Search Platform team to the next level.

We use open-source tools as much as possible, and always open source our own work. Java, Python, PHP, and Scala make up most of our code, but we value using the right tool for the job. Our world is vast and can be complicated, so we value communication, enthusiasm, and an eagerness to learn.

You are responsible for:

  • Work and communicate clearly and effectively within a small team that spans multiple time zones

  • Help maintain, scale, and extend query services at the Wikimedia Foundation — this includes the Wikidata Query Service (WDQS) and our Elasticsearch-based search engine

  • Improve the integration of Search, Wikidata Query Service, and the MediaWiki platform

Skills and Experience:

  • Good working knowledge of software design principles

  • Good understanding of how to scale applications, in terms of load, complexity, and performance

  • Ability to work in a Linux server environment

  • Write code in Java and PHP that stands the test of time

  • Demonstrated experience in large-scale Java applications

  • Be willing to travel occasionally - sometimes internationally - for team and organizational meetings

  • Proficient English speaker

Additionally, we’d love it if you have:

  • Degree in computer science, statistics, math, physics or other quantitative discipline; equivalent experience learned hands-on on the job also works

  • Experience with graph databases

  • Experience working on open source, collaborative development projects

  • Understanding of free culture / free software / open source principles

  • Exposure to applied machine learning (ML), deep learning, or natural language processing (NLP)

  • Familiarity with statistics

  • Experience with an internet software environment operating at scale; for example, messaging platforms that process hundreds of thousands of events per second

  • Big thumbs ups if you are a contributor to Wikipedia Show us your stuff! If you have any existing open-source software that you've developed (this could be your own software or patches to other packages), please share the URLs for the source. Links to GitHub, etc. are especially useful.

The Wikimedia Foundation is...

...the nonprofit organization that hosts and operates Wikipedia and the other Wikimedia free knowledge projects. Our vision is a world in which every single human can freely share in the sum of all knowledge. We believe that everyone has the potential to contribute something to our shared knowledge, and that everyone should be able to access that knowledge, free of interference. We host the Wikimedia projects, build software experiences for reading, contributing, and sharing Wikimedia content, support the volunteer communities and partners who make Wikimedia possible, and advocate for policies that enable Wikimedia and free knowledge to thrive. The Wikimedia Foundation is a charitable, not-for-profit organization that relies on donations. We receive financial support from millions of individuals around the world, with an average donation of about $15. We also receive donations through institutional grants and gifts. The Wikimedia Foundation is a United States 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization with offices in San Francisco, California, USA.

The Wikimedia Foundation is an equal opportunity employer, and we encourage people with a diverse range of backgrounds to apply.

U.S. Benefits & Perks*

  • Fully paid medical, dental and vision coverage for employees and their eligible families (yes, fully paid premiums!)
  • The Wellness Program provides reimbursement for mind, body and soul activities such as fitness memberships, baby sitting, continuing education and much more
  • The 401(k) retirement plan offers matched contributions at 4% of annual salary
  • Flexible and generous time off - vacation, sick and volunteer days, plus 19 paid holidays - including the last week of the year.
  • Family friendly! 100% paid new parent leave for seven weeks plus an additional five weeks for pregnancy, flexible options to phase back in after leave, fully equipped lactation room. For those emergency moments - long and short term disability, life insurance (2x salary) and an employee assistance program
  • Pre-tax savings plans for health care, child care, elder care, public transportation and parking expenses
  • Telecommuting and flexible work schedules available
  • Appropriate fuel for thinking and coding (aka, a pantry full of treats) and monthly massages to help staff relax
  • Great colleagues - diverse staff and contractors speaking dozens of languages from around the world, fantastic intellectual discourse, mission-driven and intensely passionate people

*Eligible international workers' benefits are specific to their location and dependent on their employer of record

What efforts are you making in terms of increasing diversity & inclusion within your company?

We welcome and cherish our differences.

The sum of all knowledge for every single human being; we can’t do that by leaving people out. Our vision is about more than providing universal access to all forms of knowledge. It’s about creating an inclusive culture. It’s about inviting others to join in and thrive with us. It’s about embracing human diversity. It’s about saying, “We see you and you belong with us.”

Our differences are precious; they make us smarter, stronger, more humble. They balance our biases and weaknesses. They open our minds. We do our best work when we understand a problem from all its perspectives.

We encourage others to do what we can’t, and we help them succeed. When voices are absent, ignored, or silenced, we seek them out. We are welcoming hosts, caring neighbors, and equitable allies. We don’t fear difference. We welcome it with curiosity, delight, and hope.

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