As it happens last weekend I interviewed Google's VP of Engineering,
Wayne Rosing, for an article about Gmail:
Today's New York Times quotes Rosing (and, er, me):
The idea behind Gmail is simple: let people store a bunch of mail
in one place, and give them the ability to search their own mail as
fast as they can search the Web using Google.
Their motto is "Search, don't sort." The idea is to let you keep
a complete archive of years of mail, and be able to pull up any
particular item -- say, a message with an important document attached
-- instantly. You don't need to file into folders.
Here is a VERY insightful article about what Google's announcement
says about their dominant technological base:
Here are screen shots depicting Gmail in action:
Another solution that I've experimented with to address the problem
Rachel raised is using Remote Desktop to a PC running Outlook. There
is an Outlook add-on search engine called Neo that gives you rapid
search capability. (Outlook's built in searching is slow.)
Any approach is going to have shortcomings... The Remote Desktop
approach fails when the PC is down, and is suboptimal over slow
connections. When it does work, it's great. Gmail appeals for
highly mobile folks who don't mind Webmail, but there are privacy
>Is this the more-and-more common situation that Google's Gmail is being set up
> to address (1 gigabyte of storage per user)?