Taking Powerset for a spin
Powerset's intro to its search.
First up, I was looking for information on the RIM-Apple war for the prosumer. A term that Wikipedia didn't carry much of. Thus far, Powerset looks like any other search:
Google nails it right away. But note that we're talking Wikipedia vs. the Web.
Next up, I was poking around for Bill Gates and Steve Jobs together. One item about semantic search may be user habits. I generally search on nouns out of habit. A semantic search could include Bill Gates stands next to Steve Jobs.
The Google result shows how it's critical for Powerset to index the Web. That means Powerset will need a lot more funding or be acquired, an outcome that would make a fine exit strategy.
Where Powerset comes in handy is big generic terms and items--the kind of information that's a Wikipedia specialty. My World War II search gives me a nice interface and key verbs that are relevant to my search on a high level.
And you can drill down on those terms. Here's a look at how PowerSet grabs verbs and assigns them meaning.
While Powerset is great for browsing I already know what I'm looking for--Italy's botched attack on Greece. Here's a look at the Powerset breakout on Greece in World War II. If this were a Web search I'd expect to find a lot more references. For instance, I'd expect some information on how Mussolini had to get bailed out by Hitler.
For comparison's sake I search on Google to find more information. Two Wikipedia entries lead the page. These items didn't surface on Powerset.