The Best Search Idea Since Google

How Amazon can make money from books you already own.

We tend to think of search requests as generally taking the form of “find me something I’ve never seen before.” But real-life search is often different: You’re looking for something you have seen before, but you’ve somehow mislaid or only half-remembered. You search for your glasses or your car keys. Or, in the case of books, you search for that paragraph about the Russian revolution’s impact on literacy rates that you read somewhere a few years ago. You know it’s in a book somewhere on your shelf, you just can’t remember which one. | “Search inside” could be the perfect solution to this common problem. —Steven JohnsonThe Best Search Idea Since Google (Slate)

Amazon’s “Search Inside” is starting to feel more and more like Vannevar Bush’s memex.