The New York Times writes about the search for the next Google:
Powerset is hardly alone. Even as Google continues to outmaneuver its main search rivals, Yahoo and Microsoft, plenty of newcomers with names like hakia, ChaCha and Snap are trying to beat the company at its own game. And Wikia Inc., a company started by a founder of Wikipedia, plans to develop a search engine that, like the popular Web-based encyclopedia, would be built by a community of programmers and users.
These ambitious quests reflect the renewed optimism sweeping technology centers like Silicon Valley and fueling a nascent Internet boom. It also shows how much the new Internet economy resembles a planetary system where everything and everyone orbits around search in general, and around Google in particular.
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.