techtsp writes: Marcia J. Bates, UCLA Professor Emerita of Information Studies recently explained why Google's birth led to the downfall of AltaVista. According to Bates, early search engines including AltaVista adapted the classical IR methods. At the other hand, Google founders started off with a completely different approach in mind. Google successfully recognized the potential of URLs, which could be added to the algorithms for the sake of information indexing altogether. Google's modern age techniques were a huge boost to those older techniques. Whatever other business and company management issues AltaVista faced, it was the last of the old style information retrieval engines.