The Washington Post prints something of a Sunday rumination on how search engines might evolve, a rather flippant piece of magazine writing that reads like a poorly edited Wired rant from the early days (I should know). Overall the piece bothers me – it takes search seriously in word, but the tone finds a way to be dismissive at the same time, and only gives a cursory answer to the question it sets up (what might search look like in the future). The set up illustrates what I mean:
Only now in the bright light of the Google Era do we see how dim and gloomy was our pregooglian world. In the distant future, historians will have a common term for the period prior to the appearance of Google: the Dark Ages.
Well, in fact, I’ll warrant that when historians look back at this era, they’ll disagree. But enough about that. The piece does provide an interesting signpost of popular culture: our most respected institutions of journalism are trying to make sense of this phenomenon as more than just a business story. Thank God.