If you’re a Windows user (and I am not, so this is not a firsthand look), you might check out the new Google Deskbar, which came out this past Thursday. It’s an interesting bid to move beyond the browser and challenge MSFT directly at the Windows level. Definitely watch this space.
From the Google FAQ :
“The Google Deskbar is a Windows application that lets you search using Google anytime your computer is on and connected to the Internet — even when your browser isn’t running. Google startup search puts a search box in the Windows taskbar at the bottom of your screen and displays your search results in a small pane that rises above it. It provides instant access to information on the web, no matter what application you’re using.”