Did You Mean Katia?
The first time I heard about Exalead was when the company was recently acquired by Dassault Systemes to “provide a new class of search-based applications for collaborative communities“, in the words of CEO Bernard Charles. So you can imagine my surprise when a search for “CATIA” on the Exalead World Wide Web search engine asked me “Did you mean katia?“. Furthermore, the first entry on the first page pointed to www.catia.ws, a domain name held by a cyber squatter trying to earn money hoping that search engines like Exalead will drive traffic to his one page web site containing advertisements. And there is more. The official home page of CATIA was nowhere on the first page of Exalead search results. Neither was a link to the CATIA Wikipedia page. So I looked on the second page of search results and couldn’t find links to 3ds.com either. Absolutely amazed I continued to the look at the other pages of search results. I stopped looking on the 10th page when I found links to LinkedIn pages of people named Catia.
Needless to say, a search for “CATIA” on Google listed the CATIA home page and Wikipedia page right on top of the search listings. Come to think of it, the Google Ads appearing on Exalead search result pages were more helpful that Exalead’s own search results. Some search engine this.
I guess this is 135 million Euros ($195 million) well spent by Dassault Systemes. Especially considering that they bought SolidWorks for about $310 million back in 1997.