Wolfram Alpha – “it’s as important as Google”.

The BBC reports today on Wolfram Alpha, "the brainchild of British-born physicist Stephen Wolfram.

"The free program aims to answer questions directly, rather than display web pages in response to a query like a search engine.

"The 'computational knowledge engine', as the technology is known, will be available to the public from the middle of May this year."

Not to prejudge it or anything but my gut feeling is it can't be *that* good because it's named after its inventor. Think of the great internet successes such as Google, Wikipedia, Facebook, Twitter… all names chosen to describe the *service*, not to honour the guy(s) who came up with it. Even the web itself, as Stephen Fry once pointed out, could have permanently contained a reference to its creator Tim Berners-Lee with the prefix 'tim' (standing for 'The Information Mine') instead of the good old 'www' that we have all come to know and, er, love. But it didn't.

Anyway, I'll be keeping an eye on http://www.wolframalpha.com/ over the coming days…

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