Via Webmaster World, Google has released the latest version of its Google Deskbar. It is similar to Google Toolbar where it tries to integrate Google with the operating system user interface. However, instead of adding a toolbar to everyone's browser of choice - Internet Explorer, Google Deskbar adds a new toolbar to your Windows taskbar. Here's my screen shot running Google Deskbar 0.5.81 Beta on Windows 2000 SP3.
It allows you to press [Win]-G to come directly to the query box, and [Shift]-F1 to bring up the "mini-browser", which contains an embedded IE. It also offers customisation of short-cut keys so that it does not need to always invoke Google search - it can take arbitrary URL with parameters substituted with your query string. I can see it very useful to use Google Deskbar to invoke multiple search engines from one single place.
And Google Deskbar has solved the reason why I have not used Google Toolbar in the first place - because I don't browse the web in IE. Google Deskbar simply fires up the web browser of your choice - be that Mozilla, Firefox, Opera or well, Internet Explorer. Viewer itself sits in the memory at around 600kb, or around 2-3Mb when the mini-browser is opened, which is not too bad.