Alta Vista adds language-specific searching

Digital says its renowned AltaVista Search engine now deals Web results by language.

The firm said that the multilingual capability is only available on the worldwide AltaVista Search Network, which now has two new mirror sites: AltaVista Asiawide based in Malaysia, and a Southern Europe and Latin America site based in Spain.

Using the tool gives users access to language-specific sites in 25 languages including Chinese, Hebrew and Lithuanian. Unlike most search engines, it looks for language content rather than purely the country where the server holding the Web page resides. Digital believes about a quarter of all Web content is not in English.

"By allowing users to choose language-specific search results, AltaVista makes the Web much more accessible to users throughout the world, particularly those whose mother tongue is not English," said Ilene Lang, Digital vice president for AltaVista in a prepared statement.

Digital recently reined in plans to spin off Alta Vista as a separate operation.