At this week’s Searchology conference at its headquarters in Mountain View, California, Google announced its move to what the company calls “Universal Search” — the integration of images, video, and other data types (who would ever have thought that “news” was a data type?) into what was formerly just the results page for Google text searches. With Universal Search, if you want to know about a particular movie there is a fair chance the top results may actually INCLUDE the movie, in its entirety.
Universal Search is Google’s attempt to destroy its major competitors who, like Gorbachev in the waning years of the USSR, have to follow suit and start spending money they don’t have if they want to even appear to still be in competition with Google. This means for these companies more software development, more sweeps of the web, as well as the greater likelihood that among their top results will be pages located at Google properties like YouTube.
Read Robert Cringely’s thoughts on Universal Search as well as coverage from C|Net and relevant news affirming that it’s OK to use thumbnail images in search results.
Contribute your knowledge of “Universal Search” to the Whats New Media Wiki.