Logo since 2018
Type of site
|Web search engine|
|Created by||Brian Pinkerton|
|Alexa rank||4031 (Jan. 2019[update])|
|Launched||April 20, 1994|
WebCrawler was the first Web search engine to provide full text search. Brian Pinkerton first started work on it in January 1994 and later he published a list of top 25 websites. The site went online on April 20. On June 1, 1995, America Online (AOL) bought WebCrawler. On September 26, 1996, Excite announced it would purchase WebCrawler from AOL for $12.3 million. WebCrawler was highly successful early on, at one point it was unusable during peak times due to server overload. It was the second most visited website on the internet as of February 1996, but it quickly dropped below rival engines and directories such as Yahoo!, Infoseek, Lycos, and AltaVista by 1997.
WebCrawler was maintained by Excite as a separate search engine with its own database until 2001, when it started using Excite's own database, effectively putting an end to WebCrawler as an independent engine. Later that year, Excite (then called Excite@Home) went bankrupt and was then bought by InfoSpace. WebCrawler and Excite Search, along with Dogpile and MetaCrawler, which were also part of InfoSpace, were metasearch engines fetching results from different sources.
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