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Wolfram Alpha: The Beginning

Launch Issues and Varied Opinions

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Wolfram Alpha launched on Friday night after much anticipation. The search engine, which began generating most of its hype a couple months ago experienced problems right out of the box.

 Many users trying to see what all of that hype is about were met with fail messages referencing 2001: A Space Odyssey. Some have been forgiving of this failure, considering that the project is in Alpha, but opinions were mixed among those who experienced Wolfram Alpha without a hitch.

Wolfram Alpha (impressed)

Wolfram Alpha (not impressed)

 Comments from around the web say things like:

-  "Wolfram is useless. Can someone please tell me why wolfram is better than Wikipedia?"

- "I asked it how many miles around the Earth was, and it didn’t know. Why did they waste so much time/money on this, again?"

- "A lot of the mathematical proofs and descriptions of algorithms on Wikipedia are surprisingly well written. You’re telling me Wolfram Alpha can replace that? In fact, Wikipedia is a completely different type of service."

- "Wolfram alpha search engine is a genius."

- "Wolfram alpha – its the classic case of overhype. It’s clearly got a use but not for the general public as a search tool."

- "Not understanding Wolfram Alpha at all… Unlikely to become a verb isn’t it? Prefer just searching to ‘systematic computable knowledge’."

- "Wolfram Alpha is a pretty awesome idea and so far its been very fun…"

You can search Twitter of course, and see a broader range of thoughts about Wolfram Alpha. Have you used it yet? If so, let us know what you think about it. Does it have a place in your search toolbox?

Wolfram Alpha: The Beginning
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  • http://connectionsblog.net Yuri

    Expect a Google rival — and you’d be disapppointed. Expect a good reference engine — and you’ll love it. It’s simply not a search engine, though it looks like one.
    Some thoughts on why people care about it along with a “Hello, human” dialog: http://connectionsblog.wordpress.com/2009/05/18/hello-human-a-dialog-with-wolfram-alpha/

  • Guest

    search for 35 USD or 100 RUB or 1000 YEN. brilliant.

    • http://tradingsystems4forex.com/forex-articles/ Forex articles

      Wolfram is am original mathematician and he wants to show that there is a better way than Google. This is a good thing, otherwise this 800 pound gorilla is going to rule the Internet with no counterweight.

  • http://inchoo.net Toni Anicic

    It’s not completely useless. Off course, internet power user will always find better results using search engines / other resources, but for typical internet newbie, this is a great piece of software for finding most of the data a person could ever look for.

  • AaThom

    Web page is pretty much unreadable in Firefox. Guess only InternetExplorer users need apply.

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