GTE SuperPages.com(R) Service Sets Shopping Spiders Free on Web To Help Consumers Buy Online Effectively

New Shopping Engine Delivers Complete Lists of Online Shopping Sites - An Internet First

DALLAS - Spiders know how to move around a Web. That is why GTE SuperPages.com http://superpages.com, a comprehensive online shopping destination and the leading online Yellow Pages, has them searching the Web for e-commerce-enabled sites so consumers can locate and buy what they want quickly and easily.

Using advanced patent-pending classification technology from GTE Laboratories, GTE Directories Corporation is building a comprehensive, searchable database of all the products for sale on the Web. This database will be the foundation of SuperPages.com's new shopping engine.

The shopping engine, which will be featured in the redesigned SuperPages.com site available at the end of June, will allow consumers for the first time to obtain a complete list of the online storefronts that sell specifically what they are looking for. Instead of searching all sites on the Web, GTE's shopping engine retrieves information from online shopping sites, allowing consumers to quickly locate online merchants that sell a particular product without having to wade through a large number of irrelevant and confusing links.

To begin building this database, GTE recently released several "spiders" onto the Internet. Those spiders are currently searching the Internet for all e-commerce-enabled sites and indexing the products for sale on those sites. "Spidering" and "spiders" are common Internet technology terms that describe the ability to search the Web for information based on a specific set of criteria, then collect and return that information to the entity conducting the search.

"If there is a product out there for sale, our shopping spiders will find it - no matter who is selling it," said Earl A. Goode, president of GTE Directories Corporation. "SuperPages.com will change the online shopping experience by offering an immediate and complete list of online merchants that is tailored to meet the user's specific needs."

GTE's spiders are identifying all online shopping sites based on the presence of key features related to online shopping. Once a site has been classified as e-commerce-enabled, the spiders will index all of the products available on that site. That information will be accessible to users from the shopping engine at SuperPages.com.

Using natural language, users of the SuperPages.com shopping engine can search the entire Web with product descriptions that are as broad or specific as they wish. For example, if a user is searching for a pair of jeans, he or she will be able to go to the shopping engine at SuperPages.com and enter in a description of the desired item, such as "dark blue carpenter jeans with five pockets." The shopping engine will then find all of the Internet sites where the user can purchase a pair of dark blue carpenter jeans with five pockets. Results are returned and ordered based on relevancy. For example, the more closely the online storefront can match the user's specific product request, the higher it will be listed in the search results. From the search results, users can link to either the home page of the selected sites or to the specific Web page featuring the desired item.

Other shopping sites send consumers only to merchants who have signed agreements with them, even if the merchants' products may be irrelevant to a search. At SuperPages.com, consumers will receive complete, unbiased lists of online retailers. All search results will be tailored to consumers' needs.

Developed by GTE Laboratories, SuperPages.com's new shopping engine uses pioneering e-commerce search technology to build a comprehensive database of all products and services on the Web. Since fast response times are critical to consumers, GTE Laboratories developed novel information-retrieval techniques to quickly search through its vast product database and provide results to consumers rapidly.

"Until now, the Web did not offer a quick and convenient way for online shoppers to find and buy the specific items they wanted, so GTE Laboratories developed the shopping engine for consumer use at SuperPages.com," said Renu Chipalkatti, program director at GTE Laboratories. "We continually strive to develop new innovations to ensure that SuperPages.com's users receive the best services."

About SuperPages.com and GTE Directories Corporation

With over 11 million businesses listed and thousands of advertisers, SuperPages.com, offered by GTE Directories Corporation, is a rich, comprehensive shopping tool designed for people who want the convenience of finding information and purchasing products and services online. A leading Internet Yellow Pages service, SuperPages.com receives over 4.5 million visits per month and conducts over 12,000,000 Yellow Pages searches per month. GTE Directories Corporation is a leader in linking buyers and sellers through a spectrum of multimedia advertising solutions, ranging from traditional Yellow Pages advertising to interactive Internet-based services to cable television advertising. The company provides sales and other directory-related services for approximately 2,600 directory titles, including GTE's Yellow Pages directories, in 13 countries with a total circulation of 96 million. GTE Directories Corporation is a part of GTE Corporation, one of the world's largest telecommunications companies and a leading provider of integrated telecommunications services.

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