Monthly Archives: June 2009

WolframAlpha: Not Really a Revolution

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As the graph via TechCrunch perfectly illustrates, WolframAlpha has not revolutionized Search… at all. It is a very nice concept, but far from delivering any real everyday value other than being somewhat useful to find numeric facts.

By comparison Bing has resulted in a good surprise to put pressure on Google monopoly in Search. No Search Revolution, but at least some good competition. That is excellent news for all of us.

An today’s news of Bing Travel launch look very promising.

No More Bing for China

bingxxx

NYT, GigaOm, and others attribute to the 20th anniversary of Tiananmen the fact that Twitter, Blogsplot, YouTube and many other sites are not accessible from China these days.

Even the brand new Microsoft search engine Bing is now blocked!!

I wonder if the cause of Bing blockage will not have anything to do with the fancy feature of Bing playing video thumbnails as you move the cursor over them. Taking into account that porn is censored in China and that YouTube videos were perfectly watched from Bing (and YouTube is blocked in China since March), there might be an additional reason for Microsoft’s search engine black-out. See the picture above via TechCrunch and put yourself in the shoes of a chinese censor. Wouldn’t you block it too?

China is a country where the collective good is well above individual rights. Chinese perfectly accept to have only one child by law. And Chinese do not mind censorship as long as the system allows the economy and standards of living to keep growing  as they have during the past years. 

Any Chinese who is really interested in bypassing censorship can easily do it with plenty of VPN services available in Internet, like FreeGate. In reality, very few of them care.