Google is launching Google Desktop 3 Beta, including features that make finding and sharing information easier for users in general.
With this version, Google have added new ways for users to customize the Sidebar, share information with friends, and search for content - even remotely.
With Desktop 3, users can now customize and view any combination of personalized information (photos, weather, news, maps, stock quotes, and more) anywhere on their desktop, not only on the sidebar. Users can undock panels from the Sidebar and place them directly on the desktop.
A new feature, Search Across Computers, is an advanced feature designed for people who regularly use multiple computers. It helps users access information from all of their computers from any location.
This new version also allows users to share content from their Sidebar with a friend, including news, websites, games and more. Interesting information in the Sidebar can be emailed to a friend's inbox or sent directly to a friend's Sidebar using Google Talk.
But if all this information is supposed to be secret, users can lock Google Desktop searches with a Windows password. Search lock helps users prevent other users of that computer from being able to search files.
Other new features include: advanced search forms for helping users build advanced queries, spelling suggestions for users' queries, the ability to disable indexing, the addition of zip file indexing, and an improved preferences page.
Additionally, new Google Desktop APIs enable the development of Sidebar panel plug-ins that leverage the product's new communication and sharing capabilities.
Google Desktop is a free downloadable application and runs on Windows XP or Windows 2000 with Service Pack 3 or newer. The new version is currently available in English but will be offered in 15 international languages by the end of the quarter.