Saturday, November 13, 2004

MSN beta search

I'll never forget watching Charlie Rose interview Bill Gates in May of 2004. Bill Gates was asked about the Search Engine market and Microsoft's roll in Search. I do not remember the exact answer but it was agreed that the top search engines included Yahoo, Microsoft and Google. No surprise there but what caught my attention was Gate's uneasiness when talking about search and Google. I have been to presentation on Microsoft's campus where the Microsoft employee who presented purposefully did not mention the competition, as if saying another companies name was toxic. All that it did was ruin the credibility of the presenter. The presenter was not the founder of the company. So when Bill Gates looks uneasy about the competition it usually means that he is focused on beating that competitor. He does not like to lose.

Now what does this have to do with the MSN beta search engine. At first glance the MSN beta does not come close to Google or even some of the other search engines. It does have some nice new features (Asking questions or phrases to get an answer and a few others) but it is still a long way from matching or beating what is on the market.

So Google or the other search engines should have nothing to worry about....well today that may be true, but one to three years from now that may be another story. When Microsoft and their founder put their minds to something they usually win.

Remember when Windows NT was first introduced, NT was known as Nice Try, but after a few new releases and a couple of years, NT became the dominant server operating system on the Intel platform.

So do not count Microsoft out, look for Yahoo, Google, and Microsoft to continue to invest and improve search, with a handful of other vendors to emerge in this space with clustering and other technology to improve the users experience.

The real winners will be the users and software companies that can build tools to integrate these search technologies to better improve life and business processes. With so much information on our desktops, corporate intranets, and the web, we will all be better off regardless of who "wins" the search wars.

More on search integration tools later......

Friday, November 12, 2004

Google Blog

Google Blog: "Google's index nearly doubles.
You probably never notice the large number that appears in tiny type at the bottom of the Google home page, but I do. It's a measure of how many pages we have in our index and gives an indication of how broadly we search to find the information you're looking for. Today that number nearly doubled to more than 8 billion pages. That made me smile.

Comprehensiveness is not the only important factor in evaluating a search engine, but it's invaluable for queries that only return a few results. For example, now when I search for friends who previously generated only a handful of results, I see double that number. These are not just copies of the same pages, but truly diverse results that give more information. The same is true for obscure topics, where you're now significantly more likely to find relevant and diverse information about the subjects. You may also notice that the result counts for broader queries (with thousands or millions of results) have gone up substantially. However, as with any search engine, these are estimates, and the real benefit lies with the queries that generate fewer results. "

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Goebel Intranet Toolbar

Goebel Intranet Toolbar: "Goebel Group Inc. Announces the Goebel Intranet Toolbar
A Custom Desktop Search Toolbar for Corporate Intranets - Brings the power of Desktop Search to the Enterprise While Enhancing Intranet Usability

Goebel Intranet Toolbar Integrates Desktop, Intranet, and Web Search. Users of the Custom Intranet Toolbar can search email and other desktop files with Google Desktop Search, the Intranet, and the Web.

Cleveland, OH (PRWEB) November 11, 2004 -- Goebel Group, Inc. a leading integrator of search technology products and services today announced the availability of a new functional browser toolbar that integrates industry leading desktop, Intranet, and Web search tools (Google Desktop, Google Search Appliance, X1, Vivisimo and more) with other productivity resources. Organization are starting to evaluate ways to integrate desktop search into their enterprise business processes. The Goebel Toolbar is a natural way for individuals, teams, and an entire enterprise to integrate the new search technology regardless of vendor. The Goebel Intranet Toolbar offer a way to quickly access information on a persons desktop, a corporate Intranet, and the Web. Custom features include: branding, ability to search multiple indexes/repositories, auto login to corporate email, calendar, and blog systems, password protection for more secure search, messaging and others. Benefits of using the Goebel Intranet Toolbar include: increase intranet usage, enhance intranet usability, increase employee productivity, and it offers another way to communicate with employees.

A free sample version is available for download at:

Thursday, November 04, 2004

SNAP a new search engine

A million searches, and we’ve got to celebrate that!
Filed under:
General— From Bill Gross @ 5:22 pm
We’re going to have a contest, celebrating “finding what you’re REALLY looking for” and to thank you for supporting our mission, which is exactly that. So we’re dreaming up some prizes, and we’ll announce that soon.
Many of you have also asked us for a toolbar (thanks) and we’re working on that now. First we’ll roll out a really simple one, but we have ideas for some great power-user features and we’re working on that one for a second rollout later on.

Custom Toolbar Available at

A few more things we’ve done recently, per your suggestions. We changed the right two columns in the search results, we added icons to the columns, we underlined the column names to call out sorting, we introduced click-back memory and we added the ability to sort via a pull down menu. Thanks so much for all the great ideas, please keep them coming.