Smarter Search with WolframAlpha


UPDATE: How Google will respond to WolframAlpha

Coincidental with the release of the new Star Trek movie is the appearance of WolframAlpha, a search engine capable of delivering the sort of answers to complex questions that Gene Roddenberry imagined all those years ago.

Created by genius physicist Stephen Wolfram, WolframAlpha doesn't just do the Google trick of finding documents that match search parameters -- it accesses a bunch of databases and compiles detailed answers on the fly.

Alpha is being pitched as anything but competition for Google -- it may even be licensed by the big G. But it seems to me this is one way Google's dominance can be challenged, at least around the edges: with specialized search tools that do what the big dog doesn't. And the value of possible enterprise versions is obvious.

Semi-related: Google-based technology for your website.