I don’t get Google Base at all. From the announcement: “This beta version of Google Base is another small step toward our goal, creating an online database of easily searchable, structured information.”
Isn’t that just the web, minus the structured part?
Isn’t the whole genius of the web the realization that the structure isn’t necessary?
And isn’t the very reason for Google’s riches the fact that they figured out how to do the “easily searchable” part without the structure? That they figured out that even when a billion people who are definitely not interested in tagging or categorizing or structuring anything just start cobbling together half-broken HTML pages on whatever topics they like that it SELF ORGANIZES?
Google Base just feels like a throwback to the earliest thinking about online systems, like Xanadu or Cyc or CompuServe or something. Or maybe the semantic web people have infected Google and all is lost.