Lycos Integrates Lycos Pro Technology Into Main Service

Lycos Integrates Lycos Pro
Technology Into Main Service

From The Search Engine Report
Oct. 5, 1997

In June, Lycos introduced Lycos Pro, a completely separate search engine using new crawling technology and a completely different searching algorithm than its main Lycos service.

Now the technology behind Lycos Pro has been integrated into the main Lycos service. Lycos announced the change on Sept. 16.

Lycos looks much the same on the surface, but the results it yields, and the type of searches it allows, are different than in the past. Meanwhile, Lycos Pro continues to operate, as does Lycos Pro with Java Power Panel. There are distinct things that can be done with each service, as described below.


Most people will continue to use the Lycos service, which is aimed at those with basic searching needs. The change to using Lycos Pro technology will be noticeable to these people in two main ways.

First, the relevancy of results will probably seem improved than in the past. When Lycos Pro launched, I found it provided better results than Lycos powered by its old technology. Relevancy is subjective, so I can't say everyone will agree. But I strongly suspect that those using Lycos now will find the new technology improves the results returned.

Second, Lycos now offers phrase searching. Simply enclose your search words with quotes, to perform a phrase search.

"Lycos never had phrase searching, and that was one of the places where we always got dinged. Now, I would put our phrase searching up against anyone," said David Burns, Director of Product Marketing.

Lycos Pro

The main difference in using Lycos Pro is the ability to use proximity commands. With Lycos Pro, one can specify that two terms should be within a certain number of words of each other, or that one term should appear before another, or more.

Lycos Pro also offers the ability to nest commands, such as:

(hilliary OR bill) AND clinton

which means, "find documents with the word 'clinton' and either 'hilliary' or 'bill' in them."

On a technical note, Lycos Pro uses a separate catalog than the main Lycos service. Thus, there is a small chance that pages in Lycos many not appear in Lycos Pro, and vice versa. However, spot checks found identical top ten results for a variety of searches, showing that the two catalogs are very similar.

Lycos Pro With Java Power Panel

This is the Lycos Pro service with the ability to modify how it ranks and searches for pages. You can do everything possible with the Lycos Pro service. However, sliding controls lets users set the emphasis of how pages are ranked in six major areas, such as appearing in the title or appearing early in the text.

Those who want to know more and learn how the panel should read the previous article on Lycos Pro, listed below.

Other Changes

The home page has also been tightened to make it load faster and to better emphasize the Web Guides, subject-oriented areas that integrate search features, selected directory links, news articles and other content.


Lycos Press Release
Lycos, Sept. 16, 1997

Lycos Pro Commands

Lycos Launches Lycos Pro
Search Engine Report, July 2, 1997

About the author

Danny Sullivan was the founder and editor of Search Engine Watch from June 1997 until November 2006.

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