This is partly for speculation, partly to throw my own ideas out there, and partly to see if anyone who knows something might chime in with details. I think a lot of people here agree that Spotlight will bring a huge improvement to how we search for information on our own computers. Finding something in 1 second instead of thrashing the hard drive for 30 seconds will be great. Smart Folders will do to Finder what Smart Playlists did for iTunes -- the possibilities are enormous. But just how far will it go? I've been thinking about how this will affect me, and I've realized a few things about my current searching habits. First, I usually know where I put files I work with on a daily basis, so searches are relatively uncommon. Maybe a couple times a month. Second, I try to make regular backups to CD and DVD, removing data from the hard disk that I'm no longer working with. So when I do search for something, there's a decent chance it's been removed and only exists on a backup disc. So this leads to my first question: will Spotlight be able to index offline media like CDs and DVDs? If not, is it extensible enough that someone could easily write a plugin to do so? My most difficult searches are those when I know what content I'm looking for, but no longer have any idea what I might have called the filename. I keep an online catalog of all my backup discs, but this just stores disc name, file name, date, and a few other bits of information. If I can't remember the filename, I'm not gonna find out which disc it's on. Spotlight could solve this problem entirely if you could insert a disc and select a function to index that disc. Second question: is Spotlight smart enough to look inside archive files, like zip, tar, dmg, iso, or Stuffit archives? Meaning if I have gettysburg.txt inside famous_speeches.zip. will it actually look inside the zip file, extract the text file, and index its contents? My homegrown backup disc cataloging system does this (without the contents indexing, of course), a feature of which I'm quite proud. It'll go as recursive as you want, opening up any kind of archive inside any other kind of archive, and so on. Spotlight needs to do this, but does it now? Final question: Smart Folders are great, but how are they implemented? Specifically, are they a feature of Finder.app, using Spotlight to generate their contents on the fly, or are they embedded deeper in the system at the filesystem level? If the latter, then that's HUGE. Any application will be able to take advantage of Smart Folders, including command line apps. Imagine you make a Smart Folder for all images above 1024x768 in resolution. Then you could point the Desktop Preference Pane to randomize the desktop image from that Smart Folder. Any app could go to Smart Folders for opening new files. The sky's the limit. If it's just a feature of Finder (and maybe other apps that were rewritten to be aware), then that's cool but not nearly as extensible. How far does Spotlight go? I really think all 3 of these features should be in it, but I'm kinda doubtful, at least for the initial release. Kinda makes me wish I had been a paid ADC member so I could submit feedback on this stuff early on and make sure Apple was aware. Anyone have any details (non-NDA, of course )?