Google for the Masses

Wait, don't we already have that? ____ ______ states in reference to the Google Search Appliance: The product I wanted was a desktop Google for $20-$99 per year. I'm still reading tea leaves. He goes on to cite former Sun and Novell exec Eric Schmidt's CEO-ship of Google as perhaps motivating them to the enterprise instead of the extraprise (or "extra prize"?).

It's an interesting thought. I remember a client of my sold-long-ago firm, POPCO (motto: the lights are off, but we're still ticking!), showing me Web Weasal or Net Ferret or something back in 1996: it was a desktop app that queried a bunch of search engines in the background and assembled results. Because the queries came from the desktop, search engines couldn't easily lock them out. Other products from other makers (free and fee) followed, but they never caught on.

I'm not sure exactly why. It might be the newbie issue. A desktop search program is something that everyone might want to use and then you support a million people who don't know how to program their VCRs (but can magically type illiterately into an email message).

What I think ____ is talking about (help me out here) is Google's power turned towards indexing files on a local hard drive. I find that a different sort of business than what Google is in. Pushing their search into intranets via hardware is an extension of their mighty power. Pushing their optimized routines onto heterogeneous hardware and platforms makes them a consumer software company. (____, you run a consumer/professional software company - do you really want to wish that on Google?)