Here are some of the companies, projects, and individuals who have expressed an interest in participating in this project:
OSDL currently hosts this Web-Site.
I don't know if any of those companies will help with money or not, but here I have an suggestion on how we might earn some money (for this project only, not for yourself though .. ).
The whole concept is based upon finding Prior Art.
The Request for Prior Art Mailinglist could be enhanced with some kind of bounty for those that respond. For example if you want help finding Prior Art on a specific patent, you may say that you pay for each software-category-assoziation 10 US$, and for each concrete Project that was launched prior to the Priority Date 50 US$. You may also choose any other value, just depends on how much you want to motivate the list-members.
All payments could be done via PayPal, and would be coordinated centralised from our server. (Requestee → OSSasPA → Prior Art searchers)
For maintaining this, OSSasPA will keep 5-10% of all bountys.
.. just a suggestion