its simply not true that search is currently in its infancy. Its actually already past maturity and gone to the old folks home. There is simply no way google will ever have an unbiased organic search again. The model is clear, to wean users off the idea of what they expect from a search engine so they can make more and more money off the back of that. Going forward you will not find a giant leap in AI giving you amazing results from the organics. What you will find is more and more intelligently focused results for their own products, less and less choice. And of course more and more ever more loosely related results.
Information will be served from google approved sources such as wikipedia and google circles. You will find all the old mom and pop info sites gone. They will not be found by anyone who deosnt already know they exist. Dont forget search will move away from the desktop and onto life devices such as tv's and phones where most results will just be served on a spoon. Like the often repeated google mantra of the right answer. This will be what people in the future will expect, they ask a question and get one result served, most probably an answer with a commercial affiliation/benefit to the supplier of that result. So the idea of search being in its infancy simply doesnt hold water, for google search means something totally different now.
Yes search did indeed work in the old days. You searched a phrase and got 1000 results focused on what you searched for. Yes lots of spam along with it but lots of right results too. Much like cameras at high isos, if you want a detailed image you have to live with some noise, turn on noise reduction and while you image might look a little prettier you have lost all the detail with the noise reduction.