Rating What's Hot:
The Search works just as you would expect it to right out of the box. You type into the box and as you type each character it progressively refines the search. The results are instantaneous. If you want to refine to certain media types or categories then you can use simple drop-down boxes.
The Big Box of Art (410,000) gives you the ability to add your own images into personal collections that can also be searched. There's no way to merge other clip art, such as that from Microsoft Word, but that's not unexpected because there appears to be no standard for clip data files.
The thumbnail images are very small (64x64 pixels) and not sufficient in size to make any decisions. In addition, there appears to be no temporary caching of the bigger images, so if you want to look at images on different CDs you have to continually switch back and forth. When you insert a new disc there is a large delay as The Big Box of Art (410,000) and Windows AutoPlay compete to open the drive. In this case, it's obvious that AutoPlay should have been temporarily disabled by the application; Windows provides APIs to allow developers to do this.
The progressive search feature causes one odd quirk. Until you type a space, it doesn't know that you are looking for a single word. For example, if you type in CAT you may be surprised to find pictures of CAThedrals, mousetraps (keyword CATch), serving dishes (CATering), and animal skulls (CATtle) mixed in with your cats. Once you discover that hitting the space bar fixes the search to CAT it's not a problem, but for a while I thought the search was useless.
Over half the claimed 410,000 images come in the web graphics and animated GIF categories and these are not integrated into the main search and graphical browser. Instead, there is a link that opens up your web browser along with security warnings about Active content. There is no search functionality; you have to browse and guess where the images you want may be.