[sociate] Google Desktop Search, X1 and Lookout

  • From: "Jerry Michalski" <jerry@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "Sociate News" <sociate@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 30 Oct 2004 11:04:37 -0400

David Weinberger posted recently that
<http://www.hyperorg.com/blogger/mtarchive/003213.html> he still likes X1
better.

For completely different reasons, after trying both  <http://www.x1.com/> X1
and  <http://www.lookoutsoft.com/> Lookout (the Outlook plugin that
Microsoft recently acquired), I'm pretty happy with Google's new
<http://desktop.google.com/> Desktop Search. 

X1 is overwhelming. It shows me all my files of every type, including files
in my spam folder that I have no desire to see. I thought I excluded those
from indexing, but they keep showing up. Because its UI premise is to narrow
down the search, starting with all your files, X1 feels like a huge program,
especially if you like to keep your application windows large. Then X1
insists on separating my files into different search buckets for e-mail,
files and such. Why? Why do I have to search several times? And why do
searches so seldom find the files I really want to find? Problematic.

Lookout is a little better, but it works on Outlook contents only, and it
isn't all that quick. Its startup delay is a little annoying, but the
re-indexing bothered me more. I could have set Lookout to re-index less
often, but every couple hours, just when I needed my CPU most, my whole
machine would slow to a crawl for long lazy minutes. When I had to rebuild
my machine after a disk crash, I didn't reinstall Lookout.

Google Desktop Search is a pleasant surprise, understated and powerful. It
doesn't promise that much, then quietly overdelivers. One of the unexpected
features shows up the next time you run a normal Google search of the Web:
your local results are summarized as the first search result, with the
Desktop Search icon in the margin. It indexes limited file types, doesn't
preview your files, etc., but having Google-speed search of your own desktop
is sweet. It changes your world view a little to have useful search at hand,
as with Gmail.

Microsoft, how come the $5 billion you spend every year on R&D couldn't do
this?


posted by Jerry Michalski at
<http://www.sociate.com/blog/archives/2004_10_01_archive.html#10982208181412
0377> 11:01 AM

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