“Today’s screencast is a 90-second short film that demonstrates Simon Burns’ astonishing finding that desktop search has been right under our noses for years — built into Windows but then crippled by weird design choices. In the screencast you’ll see how even when the Windows indexer is enabled, a search won’t use it unless you prefix the search term with an exclamation point. You’ll also see the ancient and obscure Windows indexing administration tool in use. It’s bizarrely named ciadv.msc and tucked away in the system32 directory, but if you point a shortcut there you can bring it to life.
…This week’s column explains how these odd circumstances arose. Even though it’s water under the bridge now, I can’t help wondering how the desktop search market might be different today if something like this screencast had been widely available three or four years ago. Audio/visual narration of software behavior makes connections in our brains that don’t happen when we just hear about software, or read about it, or see static screenshots.”