At trade shows, I used to go on about how much information the Google Search Appliance could discover on an organization's intranet. Turns out, that promise can be about as exciting as telling people how much lint they can find under their couch. For many companies, the official intranet is a relatively tiny set of company-approved web pages containing such gems as the cafeteria menu and company holiday calendar.I realized that here at Google, we use the term intranet to refer to an entirely different beast – a mash-up of content that includes literally anything that's accessible over our corporate network. Our Google Search Appliance hoovers up employee file shares, product team databases, marketing Wikis and engineering blogs and adds them to our internal searchindex. As a result, I can quickly find everything from recent sales presentations to product launch plans right from the search box.
Your organization probably has these content sources and more, but may not refer to them as part of the official intranet. Maybe we just need a new word to get us on the same page. Something like “Enternet,” for Enterprise-network, could work. So next time you're looking for that revised customer proposal or product launch plan, consider taking a wing dip at the intranet and then rocketing over to the Enternet to get the freshest organic content...I like it.