Digital?s Internet software arm has improved its Altavista search engine to include Live Topics, a tool that refines query results.
Although a highly regarded application, Altavista has been criticised for being insufficiently specific for Web queries, listing thousands of sites when any query is registered. To help searchers narrow down the relevant sites without using awkward symbols, Live Topics invites surfers to select or reject subjects associated with the original query and returns more structured results, organising the documents found into groups.
Ilene Lang, president of Altavista, insisted that Live Topics is proof that Digital plans to push the product unit as a separate company and will exploit the I"It is a business and we are going ahead by extending from a free search engine to commercial business," she said. "We are revenue-based."
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