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HotBot Launches In Europe

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Lycos Europe has quietly launched its new HotBot UK, France and German sites this month (other European HotBot's may also be out there, but I haven't had a chance to check). An official rollout of these is planned for after the New Year, but you can access the Inktomi-powered sites now. I may be taking a closer look at them soon, as part of a planned review of the series of Lycos search and portal sites that serve various European countries.

The launch also means that those in the UK trying to reach the US version of HotBot at http://www.hotbot.com may find themselves automatically redirected to the UK version (the same is probably true in France and Germany). That's unfortunate. Lycos has employed the same type of redirection over the past two years to force those trying to access its US site into its European versions. As a result, it's not an uncommon experience to discover that search pages may not load correctly, broken links occasionally occur and other unexpected problems crop up.

Perhaps the redirection with HotBot will fare better, but I'd prefer to see the type of system that AltaVista and others employ. If AltaVista detects you are accessing its US site from the UK, it pops up a separate window to remind you that a UK version exists, rather than forcing you to the UK site.

HotBot
http://www.hotbot.lycos.co.uk

HotBot France
http://www.hotbot.lycos.fr/

HotBot Germany
http://www.hotbot.lycos.de/

HotBot US
http://hotbot.lycos.com/

If you want to reach HotBot US from abroad, enter the URL above rather than http://www.hotbot.com, and you can access the service.

HotBot US Mail
http://members.hotbot.lycos.com/

Should you have mail through HotBot US, the URL above will continue to provide you access.


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