But it's not the only game in town: newcomers are pushing alternative models promising to tame the internet using crowd sourcing and "computational knowledge engines."
So is it time to give the big G the heave-ho? Here's silicon.com's round-up of the best of alternative search engines out there, starting with Twitter Search.
When Google is just too slow, why not tap into the fast moving wisdom of the Tweet cloud?
The Twuniverse proved its worth as a primary news source earlier this year, when Twitpic threw up the first pictures of the US Airways jet that crashed into the Hudson River in New York.
Biz Stone and the other creators of Twitter have tapped into the potential use of the site as a search engine able to deliver information almost instantaneously, adding a trending topics panel to Twitter's front page. As a result, Twitterers can now discover which stories have momentum building around them in real-time.
Refinements like TwitterWhere add the ability to search for tweets in a specific area, allowing you to home in on trends and breaking news in a particular geography.
Captions: Nick Heath silicon.com. Andy Smith ZDNet also contributed to this gallery.