I heard a hint about this potential "competitor" to Google in a 10-second spot about a program that was supposed to air last Friday on NPR.
I never heard the program, but was reminded to look up "Alpha" (or was it going to be "Alfa"?) and "search engine" on Google.
Sure enough: That's right: Wolfram|Alpha--or WolframAlpha!
I don't see why NPR wanted to correlate it with--or against--Google. It seems to have a very different purpose: it doesn't do searches; instead, it does amazing calculations and manipulations of data.
Check it out. And see what it does by trying some of the "few things to try" over on the right-hand side of the page.
I tried it with my birthday, my current hometown, and some of the other raw suggestions they suggest (including some on the "more" page--like "1 apple + 2 oranges" . . . and some alternatives, that didn't work).
It seems rather limited at the moment, and not everything seems to be working. (Their introductory video, for example, isn't working as I write this.)
I don't have any burning uses for this engine quite yet. But I can see how it might prove very valuable for a number of scholars!
For more information, check out their FAQ page.
The potential is great, but we'll have to see how things pan out in the future!
Not super pleasant (to put it mildly), but educational . . . - *I originally published the following post in my personal blog. I am now (in 2016) republishing here those articles from my blog that have to do with the f...
3 years ago