15 years ago tomorrow, May 1, 1995, I walked into the doors of Digital Equipment Corporation. I was a marketing/business person working in the Advanced Technology Group – my mission was to help bring amazing technology to market that the brilliant minds in the ATG's Digital Labs were thinking up.
About the same time I walked into those doors, a researcher named Mike Burrows created indexing technology to index his vast email archives … so he could win office debates! It didn't take much for his colleagues at the Labs, specifically a great guy named Paul Flaherty, to figure out if they pointed that technology to the young Web, it would solve the problem on finding information on all the millions of pages that were popping up. Then, Louis Monier ran with the concept and developed the front end of what ultimately became … AltaVista.
It's an amazing story and it was an amazing journey for me. I was part of the founding AltaVista team that launched the business and grew it into (at the time) the #1 internet brand, top trafficked site and a $50M media and $70M software business before Digital was sold to Compaq. Then AltaVista was sold, sold and sold again … gradually fading from its glory in the process.
I loved being part of the AltaVista journey and my ... how have things changed in 15 years. That conversation is for a different day. For now, here are a few things from my archives to share. I have a ton of stuff somewhere – this is good incentive to dig it out and post another update. For now … ENJOY!
The Original Logo – Circa 1995
Cleaned up logo (without the tree's) – Circa 1996
Remember the "Book"? We sold about 50K copies and in many languages.
Some of the artwork from the AltaVista Internet Software website (Circa 1996)
The other products that were part of AltaVista Internet Software … other than SEARCH (we ultimately had 3 version of search - enterprise ...desktop and of course the search engine at www.AltaVista.com):
This one is AltaVista Forum. Using AltaVista Forum (Collaboration software), this was a 1000 story office tower where each floor was a full version of the software available for free. This is an image from before launch. We got to 50% occupancy rate within a few months of launch. J There was another one AltaVista Business Card Directory (ABCD) – if I find those I'll post them here as well.
Some of the Enterprise Software Images … here is AltaVista Forum:
The software box;