Yesterday, Dassault Systemes, a public company headquartered in Paris, France, announced that it has acquired search engine company Exalead, also a French company, for 135 million Euros. The press release is here. Information professionals are particularly fond of Exalead because of its NEAR command. However, Exalead has always regarded its general web search engine more as an advert for its enterprise version than as a standalone search engine. With Dassault as the new owner, I wonder how much will change with the availability of Exalead as a search engine for those of us not within the walls of one of its customers. I’d like to know what Dassault’s President and CEO Bernard Charles meant by “a new class of search-based applications for collaborative communities.” I’m hoping he’s extending that to the free web.
I’ve been somewhat disappointed by the reviews of Microsoft’s new search engine, Bing, which MSFT is describing as a "decision engine." I began to have the distinct impression that even reviewers who I consider to be extremely tech-savvy, like the Wall Street Journal’s Katie Boehret, hadn’t looked at Microsoft’s Live search engine in awhile. Some of the things reviewers noted as being new, such as the colorful front page with its little information snippets about the picture, have been on Live (the U.S. version only) for quite awhile. On Monday, Greg Notess published a NewsBreak about Bing that clearly demonstrated he understands the nuances of both the new search, er decision, engine and its Live progenitor.
But will people really adopt the word Bing as a verb? I’ll just Bing that for you? Or, Bingo, Bing got me the answer I was looking for? Then, there’s Bada Bing, Bing Bling, and Bing being the cherry on top. Not to mention Bing Crosby, who might be crooning a Bing tune were he still alive. And, apparently, the word has various meanings in Chinese. The chances for punning about this make me giddy.
Not really in the pun category, but definitely in the "having fun with the name" department is the commentary and "press release" from Stanley Bing, the Fortune columnist, at his blog. He expressed “moderate outrage” at the branding of the new search engine with his name and suggested that the two brands come together with Mr. Bing as logo, symbol and spokesman. Note that "Stanley Bing" is a nom de plume.