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Summary:

Google unleashed the desktop beta on the world today. And as expected there is a huge furor around it. Since I am using Windows XP for a few days, I put it to test against Blinkx. My tests, admittedly very unscientific, show that Blinkx is a […]

Google unleashed the desktop beta on the world today. And as expected there is a huge furor around it. Since I am using Windows XP for a few days, I put it to test against Blinkx. My tests, admittedly very unscientific, show that Blinkx is a Mercedes compared to Google which is like a yugo. Having said that, I think this release has been rushed. Google needs to learn one thing: what works as a web interface doesn’t necessarily work as a desktop UI. Secondly, if you are going to release something, don’t rush it. Blinkx found music files, photos, and all sorts of things on this laptop. Google found limited stuff, mostly Microsoft mail and documents. Getting ready to uninstall already! Here is what others have to say: Kottke, Erik Speckman, John Battelle, Danny Sullivan, Business 2.0, BBC. Rael loves it!

By Om Malik

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  1. I currently use X1, and love what it does for me. I tried Babble, but had firewall issues with it at work, and have been kicking the tires of Google.

    I have to agree with you, though, and found that it is not cutting it. I’ve done searches for people’s contact information – I have a large address book, and it’s easier to search by contact in X1 – and it neither returned emails or a contact card for the people.

    Plus, I’m a security freak – the whole integrated into the Google search page is somewhat scary.

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  2. Agree with you Om. And Blinkx’s unobtrusive interface is certainly a pleasure to use. Plus, I don’t have to open Internet Explorer every time!

    I’ve already thanked Google and sticking with Blinkx!

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  3. Om, I couldn’t agree more. blinkx is a far superior application. Perhaps because it is so successful, the google team rushed out their version. Bad move. I found Google very limited. Blinkx is working for me.

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  4. I hear that. blinkx is king and I’m staying with it. Sorry Google

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  5. Charlie Sierra Friday, October 15, 2004

    I rarely run Windows anymore so I’ve yet to use either service, but allow me to suggest that if Blinkx wants to be relevant and more than just an industry footnote, they should get real serious about partnering with a large audience/sub base player, otherwise their future prospects are slim to nil.

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  6. RE: “Plus, I’m a security freak – the whole integrated into the Google search page is somewhat scary.”

    Google Desktop (GD) runs as a server on your local PC and listens on localhost, which is only accessible locally. The most that is passed to Google is a referrer which could include path information in a document, but that is no more information than you clicking on an external link within a local document. The referrer that is passed to Google is not accessible since only the local PC has access to localhost.

    The search results from a Google search works similar to dogpile.com, which queries multiple search engines simultaneously. The dogpile request to Google is independent of the Dogpile’Äôs request to Overture, MSN and Yahoo for the same search. The information gotten from each search engine is kept separate on dogpile’Äôs server and merged before sending it back to your browser. In the case of GD, a plug-in installed in your browser fetches the results from google.com’Äôs index and your local GD index and merges the results before displaying it ’Äì a very clever design.

    BTW, you can make your GD index remotely searchable using port forwarding, but if someone compromises your system it’Äôs your fault for opening up remote access. If you do need secure remote access to the GD index you can install sshd on the PC and do port forwarding over an encrypted ssh tunnel.

    I have never tried Blinkx, but I’Äôve had bad experiences with applications that attach themselves to the title bar of all of your applications so I am a little hesitant. GD more than satisfies my needs.

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  7. Blinkx would be great if it worked…doesn’t seem to want to search my NAS drives…and doesn’t find my email on a remote drive…

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  8. i think blinkx right now works only with the desktop hard drives and the web. i think you should drop them a note and check with them about when they will announce NAS support

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  9. Om…Thank You…that explains that problem…sure would be nice if it worked with NAS as I keep everything there…makes it a lot easier.

    rt

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  10. by the way i tried with firewire and USB drives, and it works just fine with those drives. strange but i think they can extend the utility by scanning the network drives.

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