Powerset, any chance you'll ever launch?

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Once upon a time, AltaVista was the best search engine on the Internet. Then they got sloppy, and Google blew past them.

We’ve been hearing forever, it seems, that Powerset will do to Google what Google did to AltaVista. How that’s going to happen, we’re not really sure.

Powerset had another swath of puff pieces scribed about them after their latest public appearance, at the TechCrunch 40 conference. It sounds like Powerset has done some interesting things with natural language search.

You won’t find out for yourself, though. Powerset’s current home page invites people to sign up for their oh-so-limited beta test. At TC 40, they announced they would make their technology available for testing on Powerset Labs.

That’s another page with a ‘submit your email here’ box. So they’re two for two on setting up invite pages, but a big zero on putting something out there that people beyond their West Coast coterie can see.

If there’s a company positioning itself to be flipped on launch, Powerset sure looks like the top candidate. Fan the hype, build the buzz, show some controlled demos to people who’ve bought in to the message, profit.

While we’re waiting for, you know, an actual product, there’s always the Powerset Flickr stream. Ooh, screenshots, how exciting!

Powerset, any chance you'll ever launch?
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