It seems that Google are intent on doing everything themselves.
Last week, they announced Google Squared, barely more than two weeks after the launch of WolframAlpha, a supposedly revolutionary “knowledge engine” that scours the web for information and returns with just the answer you want. Squared doesn’t quite offer the same kind of natural language interface that Alpha boasts (try typing in “How old was Barack Obama on 9/11/2001”), but it aims to solve pretty much the same kind of problems.
Somewhat more surprising to me was the announcement of Google Quick Search Box, a blatant rip-off of Quicksilver. That stings, because Google actually invited its creator, Nicholas Jitkoff, to do a Google Tech Talk about it back in 2007. It turns out Google must have liked it a lot, since Jitkoff is now part of the Google Mac team and creator of QSB, the philosophy of which is “search without effort” (replacing Quicksilver’s “act without doing”). I suppose that makes all the ripping off okay, though a quick (Har!) mention of QS in the announcement would have been nice, just as a shout out to its many fans.
In the meantime though, I’m excited to try out QSB, which is apparently significantly faster than QS, and should enjoy much stronger support in the coming years. If you’re on a Mac, why not try it out?