Based upon the results I've seen from Askjeeves lately for several searches, I would venture to say that a kindergarten class project would do a better job. I've completely lost respect for this once fine engine.
Lycos.com will use the Oneplus technology from iPhrase on their finance section only. The way I read it it has no effect on regular websearch at Lycos.
Visiting the iPhrase [iphrase.com] site makes clear the company is specialising on finance search . Customers so far are TD Waterhouse, Yahoo! Finance, Charles Schwab. Also LexisNexis.
To see the iPhrase technology in action you may go to Yahoo Finance [finance.yahoo.com]. Playing around a bit with that I got the (first, preliminary) impression, it works mostly by stripping everything but predefined phrases from the natural language query. Ex: "How are Overture stocks doing?" gives exactly the same results as "Overture".
iPhrase believes the deal could lead to additional business with Terra Lycos for some of its specializes sites.
This implies that they are looking at a wider implementation. With a fair sized deal there, and plenty of VC, I would suppose that a major dev cycle is in the offing. Ask have precious little competition on the "natural query" front