What makes Google and other search engines so valuable is that they capture people’s intent—what they are looking for, what they desire, what they want to learn about. But they don’t do a great job at capturing what people are doing or what they are thinking about. For thoughts and events that are happening right now, searching Twitter increasingly brings up better results than searching Google.

The rumblings are getting louder about this important aspect of Twitter. No one is saying Google is going away anytime soon, but the real-time Web (new hashtag #rtw ?!?) appears here to stay.

Will Google or another major player have to buy Twitter soon? What would be the consequences?