Romantic Robot Working on it.

11:38 Fri 15 Oct 2004

The Google Desktop

Filed under: Chatter — 11:38 Fri 15 Oct 04

The Google Desktop search engine has arrived. Yea, like wow….
Maybe I’m the only one who keeps a fairly organised machine but why all the fuss about this thing ? I’m in no way pushed for disk space, but do I really need a chunk of it sitting there occupied with an index of what is stored here ? No, I don’t.
Yes the Windows search function is about as useful as the cgi-bin is to WordPress, but the superb freeware program I use – Agent Ransack – does precisely what I want, and fast. It will search and find just what I need – usually scripts / programs for specific values. It doesn’t need to cache results. I have no worries about any aspect of my privacy. I have no worries about registry changes. It works, and works well.

There’s a decent write up on the GDSE over at O’Reilly but it’s this idea of searching.
Searching implies lost, whereabouts unknown, cannot find without help. That’s okay when it’s something (like a bunch of php files) that you have but are not familiar with, but when it’s something you really should be more familiar with – like the contents of your house, or the boxes in the attic, or the images folder on your machine, surely you should just look through them ?
I’ve certainly looked for a certain image and become pleasantly distracted by other family or event images I have come across – doesn’t a search engine remove that ?

Maybe it is just me ….. I know where all my programs store their data, I have cleaner programs set to delete cached data, if I haven’t used a program in a while I delete it. I’ve got loads of disk space but why clutter it up ? My only issue with information is the numerous backup CD’s I have, but again, I’ll find programs on them that I’d forgotten I had, and the GDSE is no use for them anyway.

I just cannot see why the average user can get excited over this program or why it would do anything for them except two things:
1 – Scare them as they realise just how much Windows files away
2 – Allow them to remain, or become, even more lax with regard to keeping their system in a decent order (“Save it anywhere ! Google will find it!”)

I can just see the questions coming …..”How can I get Google to not look in my porn / warez / chat log directories ?”

GDSE ? No thanks.

Update: Google Desktop Search allows users to opt out of sending the company back detailed usage data, but it isn’t possible to firewall it completely.


  1. At first glance it does seem to be a bit “Microsoft” dominated.

    Comment by Stuart — 13:26 Fri 15 Oct 2004 @ 13:26 Fri 15 Oct 04

  2. I guess the fuss is probably because Google has stolen a march over Microsoft, and this could lead to full peer-to-peer desktop searching.

    Comment by Mike — 16:38 Fri 15 Oct 2004 @ 16:38 Fri 15 Oct 04

  3. To be honest, the maker of the product doesn’t matter to me.
    It’s the fact that Google not only percieves this as a need, but also because it does nothing to educate people about good computer practices.

    “Google caused my divorce! – Wife finds porn pics Shocker!”

    Comment by Mark — 18:50 Fri 15 Oct 2004 @ 18:50 Fri 15 Oct 04

  4. Mark if you can find anything in your attic you are a better man than me :)

    Comment by Root — 23:59 Fri 15 Oct 2004 @ 23:59 Fri 15 Oct 04

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Powered by WordPress