Reno - 6:36 am on Nov 22, 2011 (gmt 0)
Too bad they hide it away to make sure nobody accidentally uses it.
Google has a huge advantage with the public at large, which has to do with the vast majority of people not knowing the difference between intentional search (default) and verbatim search (well hidden). Most users go to Google, put in the query, and one second later they start looking at the results. They don't even marvel any longer how incredible it is to get all those results in the wink of an eye. It's just what they expect Google to do, and Google does it immediately & dependably.
So the new verbatim search is the bone that Google is throwing the 1/2 of 1% that may care enough to look for it, but for everyone else, it'll be whatever it will be (intentional or whatever), and the public will come to expect more of that until the engineers change it again, then they'll gleefully expect that too. It won't matter how it works or what it's called, as long as it's from Google, they'll be happy.
Google certainly knows that's the case, so they can try whatever they want, whenever they want, and as long as the results are not disastrous (bringing back nothing but adult sites no matter what the query, as an extreme example of "disastrous"), we should assume that they'll follow the plan that Eric Schmidt announced, which is to know what we want even if we don't know what we want. That's the plan, and they're sticking to it.