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Thursday, February 09, 2006

Google Desktop vs 3.0

Over here I predicted:
...within the next 12 months, we are going to see the introduction of a global network-based operating system (OS) that will allow the provision of all services - and more - that you are currently used to. Storage space, applications, games, multimedia and the internet will all be available via this single OS.
I also referred to a Google OS over here.

Lo and behold, we now have Google announcing that they are bringing out the latest version of Google Desktop, which has a new feature called 'Search Across Computers' (hat tip to TechCrunch). This allows you to search your documents and web pages across any computer, by storing that information on Google's servers.
In order to share your indexed files between your computers, we first copy this content to Google Desktop servers located at Google.
(This copied information is not part of Google's search engine servers, and therefore unable to be found by any random web searches.)

This is the beginning of what I was talking about, allowing the storage of your files on the internet, accessible from any computer.

And only 5 months after I made my prediction...


Posted on 2/09/2006 07:37:00 PM Backlinks

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Anonymous Nikos said...

Thye should stick to what they do best....making search engines.

2/09/2006 11:03:00 PM  
Anonymous lee pletzers said...

It's a move in the right direction.

2/10/2006 03:01:00 AM  
Blogger Alan Howard said...

Nikos, you're so behind the times. :-) What they do best is not just search engines any more.

2/10/2006 07:02:00 AM  
Blogger Chancelucky said...

I think all tech companies have plans to essentially transform into "operating systems". I remember when Sun developed Java, there was a lot of talk about how JAVA would morph into a web-based OS and portable applicaiton source. Oracle has also had similar dreams with Ellison's talk a decade ago about diskless computing.

I like interoperability, but I also feel its important that individual systems preserve a certain level of autonomy. I wouldn't want to have to depend completely on programs, networks, servers, etc. for my machine to do routine tasks. Too much possibility of Big Brother, too easy to sabotage, and too vulnerable to data manipulation.
But I'm being very theoretical about how the architecture of the system also needs to reflect political concerns.
that said, Google 3.0 is pretty intriguing and exciting.

2/10/2006 09:24:00 AM  
Anonymous Jag Singh said...

Isn't the new GDS engine also a primitive file-sharing architecture? I mean all you'd have to do is rename one of your files to .doc (or anything currently accepted by the "Search across all your computers" feature), and you could theoretically give access to your files (by way of your username/password) to someone else, all without having to worry about a slow connection?

2/10/2006 12:54:00 PM  
Blogger Alan Howard said...

You could be right Jag, and it might even be something that will be taken advantage of by Google in the near future, by creating a G-Sharer or something, that allows you to share files with authorised people.

2/10/2006 12:59:00 PM  
Blogger NightFallTech said...

I wonder how it would deal with a 4.2 GB DVD image renamed to .doc...

2/10/2006 05:39:00 PM  
Anonymous Nikos said...


Here is an interesting article on Google's attempt to outdo Mafiasoft in it's attempt to take over the world.

2/12/2006 03:02:00 AM  
Blogger Alan Howard said...

It's backwards-thinking, paranoid, change-hating fear mongering that attempts to prevent anything from moving forward. And yet, moving forward is always the best thing for us, otherwise we stagnate or go backwards. Now, I do know that some - many - people are happy to stagnate or go backwards, but luckily, those people are not the ones who are driving 'evolution'.

There was all kinds of fear mongering about Microsoft, about Google, about Google advertising, about Google Desktop Search, about this, that and the other.

Regardless of the fear-mongering, paranoid change haters, we're still going to be moving forward with technological evolution.

The world is full of dumbarses who haven't got a clue. Those who have a clue will protect their privacy while still making effective use of these tools. Those who don't have a clue will suffer. This is the way of things, throughout history.

2/12/2006 11:32:00 AM  
Blogger Chancelucky said...

I may not have a clue, but there are ways to move forward without a single centralized interdependent system.

The oil busines is an interesting example of an infrastructure that has become unnecessarily monolothic. One can argue that the world is more vulnerable as a result.

I have no trouble with the notion of storage and applications not existing in the same physical space as the user and essentially being delocalized.
It's also important to maintain a certain variety within any system. It's generally recognized that biological diversity has intrinsic value. I just happen to believe that "information" diversity matters as well.
IN science fiction terms, the closest metaphor for the informational "gaia" that has been the vogue for the last 15 years is the Borg. As much as some members of that collective can be quite attractive, I prefer an approach that preserves and protects individuality.

2/12/2006 12:35:00 PM  
Blogger Alan Howard said...

I don't think the oil industry can be analogous to the IT industry though. Having a centralised system for the internet would be advantageous for the following reasons:

1 - having a single profile available per user, accessible anywhere around the world, on any computer. It's like being able to log into your own computer, from anywhere.

2 - having a centralised system avoids downtime through ineffective antivirus protection. Instead of having millions of individual computers at risk of virus or hacking, you have only one. It makes it much easier to keep up to date with the latest protective software, etc.

3 - and really, the only people who are afraid of losing their privacy are only those people who have something to hide! The government or large corporations are not going to care about the average joe blow. They're on the lookout for certain key words and phrases that the average person doesn't use, and which, if the government finds those people using those key words, will only make the world a safer place for the rest of us!

That's my opinion.

2/12/2006 04:10:00 PM  
Blogger NightFallTech said...

the oil industry is unnessecarily monolithic?, I'm not sure thats true, aside from the limited geographic locations for oil resources, the cost involved in prospecting and setting up drilling operations quickly prices any new competitors out of the market, and thats not because of anti-competitive behaviour, it's because of the realities of the resource involved!

2/13/2006 02:23:00 PM  

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