In the event you haven’t discovered this new entrant into the world of search engines from Wolfram Research, the eponymous company of Stephan Wolfram, makers of Mathematica, a widely used mathematical software tool.
According to the folks at Wolfram Research, the goal of Wolfram|Alpha is nothing less than “…to collect and curate all objective data; implement every known model, method, and algorithm; and make it possible to compute whatever can be computed about anything.” In short to know everything about everything everyway there is to know it and to make the information available to you.
As a result of that goal, Wolfram|Alpha search results are very different than Google’s. In the graphic below a search on Baylor University in Google and Wolfram|Alpha are presented side by side using the Wolfram Alpha Google addin for Firefox.
As you can see, Google returns links to pages about Baylor, starting with the official web site, Wikipedia articles and articles from publications. Wolfram|Alpha on the other hand, returns Baylor’s location, age, student population, population of home town, etc. Very interesting.
I find both types of queries so useful that I intend to run the Wolfram Alpha Google addin, unless and until somebody decides it violates their IP. Bah.