Friday, November 28, 2008

Future of Search

I used to get into heated debates all the time about the relevance of 2nd life.  My point was never that 2nd life itself would be a major online force but that it was a precursor to the future of search.  If you pay attention to how search is integrating into so many different apps you start to get a picture of where it is heading.  Take Google Earth for instance, you have the beginnings of search integration with maps, satellite imagery, three dimensional space.  Then take 2nd Life where you have businesses introducing real product that you can buy in a virtual world, with an avatar that you created.  If you think about the internet even 15 years ago, before the first visual search engine (Mosaic) it was just black screen with text.  Then it became two dimensional.  Now take Google Earth, 2nd Life and Search and combine them.  Let's say you enter your body type, height, weight, features, upload your picture, etc and create a perfect avatar of yourself.  Now you go to search, look for your favorite clothes store, walk down a street in Soho with a Google Earth type app and then walk into a store with a 2nd life type app, try on clothes with your avatar and buy.  This isn't too far off in the future.  A blog post that I saw today predicts something even cooler with a future wireless device.  

Check this would be a phone with a clear screen that you line up with a city scape, it scans it and tells you what the building is and integrates search with this.  So the final element would be making all of this mobile and using proximity apps to guide you to and give you information on certain locations.  All of this is VERY close.  We are talking within five years my feeling is that this will start to show up widely and have a relatively high adoption rate.  


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