Battelle over at Searchblog reports that two sources have told him that Lycos may have let most of its search team go and will keep just a skeleton crew in place to run the service.
For the search historians out there, the Lycos crawling technology was originally developed at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and then entered into an exclusive licensing deal with CMG@Ventures on June 20, 1995. Here’s the original press release. The news release credits Michael Maudlin as the lead developer of the Lycos spider. He is also listed as the inventor on two U.S. Patents. An interesting read by Maudlin from 1997, “Lycos: Design choices in an Internet search service,” is available here.
Postscript: If you would like to read more early web search announcements, here’s a compilation of them I put together several years ago.
Postscript by Barry: Loren Baker reports that Lycos Responds to Rumors of Abandoning Search. Where he reports on a letter received by Jim Hedger from Lycos stating; “Lycos has had a recent restructuring, which did involve members of the search team. But Lycos is NOT divesting in Search and has not abandoned search.” More information at Search Engine Journal.