Google Live Query
In Saturday's NYT, there is an article about Google's Live Query, which "shows updated samples of what people around the world are typing into Google's search engine. The terms scroll by in English, Chinese, Spanish, Swedish, Japanese, Korean, French, Dutch, Italian - any of the 86 languages that Google tracks."
Full article: Postcards From Planet Google
By Jennifer 8 Lee, New York Times
28 November, 2002
While you have to visit Google's HQ to see Live Query, the publicly available version of this is called Google Zeitgeist, which "tracks search patterns, trends, and surprises according to Google."
Also, as MikeMedia points out, "Buried on the second page of the article is this mention of the darker side of Google—it knows who you are:"
Searches are logged by time of day, originating I.P. address (information that can be used to link searches to a specific computer), and the sites on which the user clicked. People tell things to search engines that they would never talk about publicly - Viagra, pregnancy scares, fraud, face lifts. What is interesting in the aggregate can be seem an invasion of privacy if narrowed to an individual.
Tuesday, December 03, 2002