Information Today
Volume 17, Number 6 • June 2000
Vicinity, Northern Light Partner to Offer Geographically Oriented Web-Search Capability

Vicinity Corp., a provider of Internet-based marketing infrastructure services, and Northern Light Technology, Inc. have introduced what they say is the first geographically enabled Web-search capability. Consumers can now find virtually anything by location on the Web via Northern Light’s search engine ( using Vicinity’s GeoSearch technology.

“The Web is now even more relevant to where you live, where you work, and where you play,” said David Seuss, CEO of Northern Light. “There has been a paradigm shift, and for the first time Northern Light combines an enormous database reaching across the entire Web with powerful location filtering in a uniquely valuable service for the end-user.”

Through the new Vicinity GeoSearch application, Northern Light users can now include location information in a search request and receive a result listing Web pages that are sorted by their geographic relevance to the user. With this technology breakthrough, Northern Light has enhanced its position as the provider of the most comprehensive search functionality on the Internet, according to the announcement.

“We believe that the integration of Vicinity’s GeoSearch technology with Northern Light’s search engine will fundamentally change the way people search the Web,” said Scott Young, Vicinity’s senior vice president of operations. “GeoSearch makes search engine results relevant by making the user’s physical location part of the search criteria.”

Vicinity GeoSearch technology allows users to search the Web for pages that contain physical address or phone number information. For example, a user can enter a query that is equivalent to “bed & breakfasts within 10 miles of 111 Maple Street, Anytown, Anystate 11111.” The result will be a list of the URLs of all pages the search engine determines are about bed and breakfasts and which contain a complete or partial address within 10 miles of that address. As with other Vicinity products, maps and driving directions for the addresses are available.

With the commercial introduction of its patent-pending GeoSearch technology, Vicinity has combined its expertise in geospatial searching, mapping, geocoding, databases, and large-scale systems integration with Northern Light’s strength in search technology.

Vicinity’s geographical search capability provides Northern Light users with an integrated search experience that allows their searches to go beyond the confines of the Internet and include products, services, and items of interest located in the real world.

Sources: Vicinity Corp., Palo Alto, CA, 650/237-0300; and Northern Light Technology, Inc., Cambridge, MA, 800/804-6533;

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