Google Desktop – Knowledge Mgt on the Cheap

I’ve been using my free download of Google Desktop for about a month now, and have been very impressed with how quickly I’ve been able to find documents I’ve needed.  Instead of searching around all the files in my "My Documents" folder and sub folders, I’ve just quickly typed in a key word, and in seconds have the information I need.  It has been WONDERFUL!  I’ve saved myself a lot of time needlessly searching for information that should be at my finger tips.

Currently the Google Desktop will search for key words in the following documents and programs: 

  •   Gmail
  •   Outlook contacts
  •   Outlook appointments
  •   Outlook tasks
  •   Outlook notes
  •   Outlook journal
  •   Outlook Email
  • Outlook  Outlook Express
  •   Word
  •   Excel
  •   Powerpoint
  •   Internet Explorer
  •   AOL Instant Messenger
  •   Netscape Mail/Thunderbird
  •   Netscape / Firefox / Mozilla
  •   PDF
  •   Music
  •   Video
  •   Images
  • A fairly complete list of applications and file types. This got me thinking… for an individual or small office, why pay thousands, or tens of thousands of dollars for a Knowledge Management system, when you will probably be using it primarily for key word searches to find documents?  Google Desktop will do 90% of what you need it to do for your knowledge management needs.  So unless that 10% is really important you can save yourself a lot of cash.

    You may be concerned about privacy, and the ability of Google, or anyone else, accessing the data on your computer. Google takes pains to point out that none of your indexed information ever leaves your computer. You can read more about Google Desktop’s privacy policy on the Web site.

    I highly recommend Google Desktop.  Now we just need to see the linux version of Google Desktop and I’ll be really happy!


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