Google Deskbar

Google recently launched a beta of the Google Deskbar which “enables you to search with Google from any application without lifting your fingers from the keyboard.” This type of utility is quite useful and allows you to quickly do a search without first bringing up a browser window. In fact, there is already an excellent tool that does this: Dave's Quick Search Deskbar.

Both apps install into the desktop taskbar, providing a field for search entry. When not in use, Dave's will show the full date/time while Google shows a small Google logo. Dave's can be customized with XML files and comes with dozens of popular pre-configured searches (e.g., Amazon, Yahoo, Dictionary.com). Google's can also be customized but doesn't come with many pre-configured searches (other than to Google.com of course). Google's tool has one advantage by bringing up a “mini-viewer” with search results rather than going directly to the browser.

Perhaps due to the privacy concerns about their existing Internet Explorer Toolbar, Google clearly explains during installation what they call “Google Labs Feedback Statistics” — basically, the application will send usage stats back to Google. (See their deskbar privacy policy.)

For now, I'm going to stick with Dave's but I'll install Google on at least one PC to play with it.

[Via Anders Jacobsen]