In search engine news, Google has released a new product, and it isn't targeting search! Presenting Google SketchUp.
Actually, the product doesn't seem to have been Google's own development, but rather a purchase of a pre-existing product (and the company that built it). The product is entitled SketchUp.
Google SketchUp is a 3d modeling program. You can design houses, buildings, video game graphics and more. It also works with lighting effects, so you can see where shadows are going and such. It's also got a nice little demo of two models created with, namely a city, and a playground set; when you hover the mouse over them, the image zooms and moves around.
My deep thoughts on this development in the search engine industry: 1) It would be funny if someone called themselves Tomato and made some Tomato' Sketchup forums... Google already has forums, but it's still pretty cool. 2) The forums have a weekly challenge which is going to be a massive marketing success, because the challenge lets people get really interactive with the product and build a community around SketchUp. I already see 43 replies to the first weekly challenge, which is to design a chess board. If I participated, my King would be a tomato, and the other pieces would be other vegetables/fruit. The pawns would be sliced olives like those on a pizza. The queen would be one of those plants that eat insects, though. 3) Google is looking to diversify its revenue beyond the world of search. A "pro" version of the software is being sold, as are hard copies of the freely available PDF guide. 4) This is going to help Google index new formats of information and stay ahead of its competitors. They'll have access to the product's coding and to its file format in particular, so... 5) This is bad news for companies already in the graphical modeling business!