Nobody likes to be called a dummy by a dummy.

Google Desktop

Anybody got any info / played with this newbie?

http://today.reuters.co.uk/News/NewsArticle.aspx?type=internetNews&storyID=2005-08-22T042055Z_01_KNE215524_RTRIDST_0_OUKIN-UK-GOOGLE-DESKTOP.XML

BTW the link in the article doesn't work. This one does:

http://desktop.google.com
Permalink trollop 
August 22nd, 2005
blah blah
Permalink son of parnas 
August 22nd, 2005
My #1 unhappiness with Google Search v1 (apart from the ridiculous lack of security on multi-user systems) was the use of the browser as the interface, which was terribly inefficient and unintuitive. This looks much better. I wonder if they fixed security.
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
August 22nd, 2005
I primarily use Desktop search for searching e-mails.Copernic Desktop which I have been using so far, did not allow me to
a) Choose the fields in search results
b) drag a mail from search results and drop it as an attachment into a new mail.

With Google Desktop claiming MS Outlook integration - I was hoping this would be resolved. Not so. All the Outlook integration does is to save me a click to open a new (copernic/google) window by providing the search box within Google. OTOH I still need to click to close the results window Google Desktop opens.

The other gripe being that I can't seem to get the Google Desktop added to the Firefox search engine box (inspite of tinkering with the SRC file).
Permalink ShyK 
August 22nd, 2005
Hmm...thanks, trollop. I didn't realize they'd changed the interface. Downloading now...

I'll be interested to see how long the "everything in the universe has to be a web app" trend continues. I agree that not everything works best in a browser.
Permalink bionicroach 
August 22nd, 2005
providing the search box within Google

should read as
 
  providing the search box within Outlook
Permalink ShyK 
August 22nd, 2005
Okay, sanity check - is there any way to indicate where I want the index files to reside? I didn't see it in the install or settings...

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 22nd, 2005
Is that for desktop search 2.0?

Pretty annoying that it's an after-the-fact plugin...

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 22nd, 2005
also annoying is the fact that the sidebar News Tab is not picking up the choices I have set up on the Personalize Google page.

and that the Weather Tab does not have anything for cities outside USA.

Klipfarm - http://www.klipfarm.com seems to be much ahead in terms of a desktop dashboard
Permalink ShyK 
August 22nd, 2005
But less annoying than bugs or inconveniences in MS products that are never patched by MS and CAN'T be patched by MS customers. ;-)
Permalink muppet 
August 22nd, 2005
It looks like this version stores the index, by default, in the user's application data folder, so it's actually per user (rather than system-wide, as it was in 1.x). Much better.

Regarding weather, it accepted "Burlington, Ontario" fine, so while the dialog implies that it is US specific, it did accept Canadian cities.
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
August 22nd, 2005
"and CAN'T be patched by MS customers."

Google Desktop is open source?

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 22nd, 2005
As it was a plugin, I assumed it was using some sort of API for third parties. Now I see it's a Google-authored plugin.

Still, they 'fixed' it with a plugin for people who wanted that functionality.

How often does MS offer new functionality for a product in a free patch?
Permalink muppet 
August 22nd, 2005
>it did accept Canadian cities.

Mumbai/Bombay errors out though.

"The zipcode or city/state "Bombay, India" is invalid. Please re-enter."
Permalink ShyK 
August 22nd, 2005
InfoPath 2003 SP1
OneNote 2003 SP1
Windows XP SP2
Windows Desktop Search
Windows Media Player

That's the off the top of my head list.

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 22nd, 2005
:-)

Still waiting for that package, Philo.
Permalink muppet 
August 22nd, 2005
Yeah, yeah. Had a little outpatient surgery that threw the month of August for me.

"Back to normal in 48 hours" my ass...

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 22nd, 2005
That's what they always say about my colonoscopies.

:-D
Permalink muppet 
August 22nd, 2005
What I don't understand (and this isn't just a snarky remark, Philo) is why Microsoft doesn't just fix the built-in search in Outlook? I presume this is why they bought Lookout (which also implies that they admit Outlook's search functions suck) but it seems like they could have integrated Lookout's functionality by now and bundled it into a service pack.

Instead, Google has now included an Outlook plug-in with Desktop Search 2.0 that replicates the functionality of the Lookout one, so as a result, I just un-installed Lookout...
Permalink bionicroach 
August 22nd, 2005
http://desktop.msn.com/
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
August 22nd, 2005
I've been enjoying Spotlight on my Mac.

Unfortunately the Tiger upgrade CD that came with my daughter's mac mini didn't include the "Optional Installs.mpkg" that is apparently on the full version, which allows you to install x11 for Tiger.

All of my x11 apps are now broken and the Tiger version isn't available as a download from their site like the Panther one is.

WTF Batman?
Permalink muppet 
August 22nd, 2005
Was that MSN Desktop link supposed to be for me, Dennis? Because that isn't exactly an Outlook service pack is it? It's a completely separate application that most users won't find or understand on their own. (And a case of Microsoft copying Google's solution, who copied the idea from a couple of other ISVs who were doing the same thing before them.)

My question is why doesn't MSFT push down an Office update that just fixes Outlook's built-in search?
Permalink bionicroach 
August 22nd, 2005
Well you could say that Google copied FindFast.exe (the indexer first introduced with Office way back in 95 or 97). Findfast grew into Windows Indexing, a horribly misunderstood and under-utilized indexing and search facility. It is remarkable how much Microsoft completely missed the ball on that one, and you have to wonder why.

Regarding MSN Desktop Search, it's a free download, so I'm not really seeing a big difference between it and an Outlook Service Pack. I'm sure Microsoft doesn't integrate it cleanly in Outlook as they want to save that as a "feature" of the next generation of Office.
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
August 22nd, 2005
Let's see - MS bought Lookout in July, 2004. SP1 came out that fall, which means it was feature complete prior to the purchase.

I cannot comment on what may or may not be in Office 2003 SP2.

But why does it have to be in an official service pack? The functionality is right here:
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=09b835ee-16e5-4961-91b8-2200ba31ea37&displaylang=en

(BTW, muppet - that would be another case of added free functionality. You're welcome)

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 22nd, 2005
Dennis, I think you're on the mark with the "saving the feature for the next release" thing.

Philo -- it should be an "official service pack" or automatic/widely publicized update because the majority of people will never find the free download otherwise, even though the functionality would be useful to them. (I didn't even know about it until Joel posted it, actually.) As Dennis suggested, there are probably business/profit-driven reasons for not doing this, but I personally have installed Lookout for a bunch of folks who would never have found it on their own, and every one of them ended up finding the functionality EXTREMELY useful.
Permalink bionicroach 
August 22nd, 2005
In other words, it's always better when stuff "just works" as opposed to having to manually tweak it.
Permalink bionicroach 
August 22nd, 2005
bionicroach, I agree completely with what you say. However, recognize the situation we find ourselves in - it's out of cycle for an official Office SP. In addition, lookout is a pretty iffy thing to put in a service pack as a "replacement" for Outlook search - there are applications that probably leverage the UI, API, interface, etc. Replace it and you've broken all of them.

As for making it available as an "Office Update" - look at the hell we caught putting the antispyware on Windows Update (despite years of people saying it should be part of Windows)

It's an official release on MS.com. However, it's NOT listed on Office>Downloads>Outlook, which I'm gonna shoot an email out about right now. :)

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 22nd, 2005
Incidentally, I'll give Google Desktop this - it handles multi-monitor nicely. A nice relief. :)

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 22nd, 2005

This topic was orginally posted to the off-topic forum of the
Joel on Software discussion board.

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