A search for a date will give results that include the time difference from today in years, months, weeks or days. It will also list observances for date including births of noted persons. The daylight information for that date is given telling the time of the sunrise and sunset and the duration of daylight as well as the state of the moon for that day. Results for a date, June 25, 1951 list an event listed for that day, "CBS becomes the first to broadcast television in color." A search for Brooklyn, NY yields not only the current population – population: 2.557 million people (2008) but also population growth: 0.4625%per year (2000-08); population density: 34723 people/mi (2000); annual deaths: 16533 people per year (2006) and annual births: 40492 people per year (2006).
Founder, Stephen Wolfram has found a way to take mathematical concepts and figure out a way to pull different types of data together and produce a rational result. He explains possible uses of the product in this video posted here.
For Legal Research, however, WolframAlpha is not yet ready according to a post at Three Geeks and Blog which reports that “legal” questions such as these did not yield results:
•Number of lawsuits filed against ExxonA NY Times article states "It is an early working version of a project that has been years in the making and will continue to evolve over years, if not decades. As such, there is much it cannot answer now." So perhaps, one day WolframAlpha can help law students understand the rule against perpetuities.
•Patents held by IBM
•General Counsel of Wal-Mart
•Chairman of Skadden Arps
The two-part video is here: