“There is way too much obsession with search, as if it were the end of the world,” said Esther Dyson, a well-known technology investor and forecaster. “Google equals money equals search equals search advertising; it all gets combined as if this is the last great business model.”…They say that Google’s dominance today is different from Microsoft’s in the late 90s when its operating system was a virtual monopoly and nearly impossible to break. In the Internet search industry, “you earn your right to be in business every day, page view after page view, click after click,” said Barney Pell, a founder and the chief executive of Powerset, whose search service is not yet available.
They also say that the market for search simply is too large to resist. Google, which, according to Nielsen, handles about half of all Internet searches in the United States, is valued at an astonishing $141 billion. So, the reasoning goes, anyone who can grab even a small slice of the search market could be well rewarded.
Read In Silicon Valley, the Race Is On to Trump Google from the New York Times and an overview of search firms on the rise from the Read/Write Web. Plus, Is Google ‘The Internet’? from ZDNet’s Donna Bogatin.