June 2002 Archive
Dr. Jan Pedersen, formerly of Infoseek and Verity, is AltaVista's new Chief Scientist. The press release reports that "Pedersen will spearhead the company's middle- and long-term product initiatives, including research and development efforts on user-centric, next generation search technologies. "
FAST announced today that their major growth drive over the past few months has pushed their database at AlltheWeb over the 2 billion mark. Their number 2,095,568,809 is a bit higher than Google's advertised number of 2,073,418,204, but then Google's number includes their unindexed URLs as well. Some preliminary comparisons of actual search results show the two fairly even with the difference often found in the number and kind of duplicates in each.
FirstGov is now using a new search engine from FAST, replacing the original Inktomi search engine. This is not the regular FAST database used at AllTheWeb and Lycos, but it does use the same technology. The new FirstGov search engine includes non-HTML file types such as PDFs, Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and .txt and perhaps more. Even the advanced search form has no file type limit at this time, but since this is based on FAST technology, the 'url.all' field search can help. For example, putting
url.all:pdf after the search terms will narrow the results to PDF files and other pages with 'pdf' somewhere else in the URL.