July 9, 1997 2:05 PM PDT

Alexa makes the Web history

Confused or swamped Web surfers will soon have yet another tool at their disposal as the Alexa Internet Web navigation service goes into beta next week.

The new service is run by the creators of the Internet Archive, a project that aims to document and store Web pages, Usenet records, and shareware for the historical record.

The Alexa client is a toolbar that sits at the bottom of a browser as the user surfs the Web. Once downloaded and installed, the Alexa client will use a bot to analyze each Web site visited. The information it gathers will then be displayed on the toolbar. Alexa will relate information on the site's traffic, where the site is physically located, the number of pages it contains, and when the site was last updated, according to a company spokesperson.

Alexa will also display relevant links to other sites by analyzing the paths of previous visitors. Alexa will add the URLs it analyzes to the Internet Archive.

The software will be available to download for free from the Alexa Web site. The company would not comment on how it plans to bring in revenue.


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