RIP AltaVista

For those that have lived the rise of the Internet and had to install Trumpet to get online, July 8th is quite a sad day, the end of an era. BTW if you don’t know what Trumpet is then your to young to need to, and No you don’t play it!

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After being a trend setter in the early days AltaVista was acquired by Yahoo in 2003 as part of the purchase of Overture. Its simple uncluttered interface was years ahead of its time, remember this pre-dates Google.

Some history of the “Old Girl” courtesy of the BBC

AltaVista was launched in 1995 when search engines generally did a poor job of logging information on the web’s rapidly growing population of sites.

The search engine was popular because it had indexed about 20 million webpages, far more than any rival at the time. It developed its own “crawler” technology that did the job of finding webpages and logging what was on them. It also used fast computers behind the scenes to return results quickly.

The combination made AltaVista one of the top web destinations until 2001 when the number of searches conducted via Google overtook it.

The closure is part of a wider restructure at Yahoo Inc as they streamline other brands, including Delicious and YahooBuzz to name a couple, which will result in 600 job loses at the Sunnyvale based company.

How the mighty has fallen since 1996 when AltaVista provided the search results for Yahoo!

That’s progress! RIP AltaVista 15th December 1995 to July 8th 2013

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