RealTime IT News

MetaCrawler Gets New Legs

Looking to regain its status as a leading search engine, Go2Net Inc.'s Metacrawler search engine relaunched Thursday with a new interface, customization tools and expanded categories.

New features of MetaCrawler's site include emphasis on music and auction searches, two increasingly popular Internet topics. In the music category, MetaCrawler's Audio/MP3 Search conducts metasearches of several online music partners, including Astraweb, Gigabeat, AudioGalaxy, and MP3 Board.

For its auctions metasearch, Go2Net (GNET) teamed up with AuctionRover.com to provide MetaCrawler users with a categorized and searchable index of more than 35 auction sites.

Addressing the growing Internet usage outside the United States, MetaCrawler now features a tool for users to customize their searches to return results from specifically requested countries. Initially more than 25 nations in North America, Europe, South America, Asia, Africa, and Australia are searchable.

MetaCrawler also added search service Google to its roster of search engines from which to build results.

Launched in 1995, MetaCrawler is one of the oldest meta search services. The site held its own against other search engines like Yahoo!, Excite, Infoseek and Lycos until the space became crowded as the Internet grew. It has failed to make the top rankings recently in terms of usage, though many industry experts consider it one of the most comprehensive search resources available.

Russell C. Horowitz, Go2Net's chief executive officer, said the relaunch was made to address the changing needs of Internet users.

"Today's relaunch incorporates a significant series of improvements to MetaCrawler, which has been dedicated, since its inception, to providing Internet users with access to the most effective and comprehensive search resources available," Horowitz said. "As the Internet continues its rapid expansion and diversification, we will continue to extend our core technologies to more effectively search more of the Internet, as well as its most popular individual categories."

Go2Net acquired the site in 1997.