Michael Gartenburg has a blog posting entitled Is Google doing what Microsoft couldn't with their new search bar? where he writes
As Yogi would say, "it's deja vous, all over again". When Google introduced the newest version if their toolbar, it seems they added a feature that sounds very similar to what Microsoft wanted to do with SmartTags. Apparently the new software will create links in web text that will send you back to Google sites or sites of their choosing. If I recall correctly, there was a huge outcry over the SmartTag feature. Even petitions. How come there is no outcry here? Is it because Google does no evil?
Like I said yesterday, who needs a new browser to do stuff like this when you can co-opt IE with a toolbar?
This is one of the key differences between Google and Microsoft; perception. I am glad to see Google imitating one of Microsoft's innovations from a few years ago. After all, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. As can be expected Dave Winer is already on the offensive.
Personally, I can't wait to see how much cognitive dissonance this causes the Slashdot crowd.