- The average person does not want to debug their computer. We prefer instead the idea of a person typing something in and Google -- or someone else -- figuring things out for you. But very few things are organized around that principle of simplicity; we love and appreciate the complexity in technology but people using the internet really don't want that. When you see an ease of use breakthrough, it's such a wonderful thing.
As obvious as this sounds, simplicity is not the focus of Google's competitors. For example, My Yahoo is focused on customization, an approach that requires a lot of work from its users. MSN Search leaked a design that seems headed toward more knobs to twiddle and more complexity. And even though Google knocked off AltaVista with a simple keyword search that just worked better, smaller competitors these days such as A9 and Snap.com seem to be focusing on complicated interfaces with lots of little buttons to push.
But Google gets it. The computer should help you, not require work from you.
Update: The Economist is running an article, "Keep it simple", that claims, "The next big thing in technology... [is] the conquest of complexity."