This post has been a long time coming. This is a topic that I have been intending on writing about, however, every time that I sit at my keyboard and look for direction, it always seems to get lost. What I am trying to say, it is hard to be negative (not that this is intended to be negative) about long standing resources that have redefined a market that is as diverse as the Internet. But, as with most things, they age and sometimes go away. The Netscape browser will be discontinued the first of February, AOL has shifted to an advertisement based business that may be cut up and sold off to the highest bidders and Google is no longer just a search engine built on advertising.
When looking into what Google is really about, it is hard not to look at their own philosophy. It has changed a bit (minor changes) since it’s publication, but the root of the statement has stayed pretty consistent.
Here are the “Ten things Google has found to be true:”
- Focus on the user and all else will follow.
- It’s best to do one thing really, really well.
- Fast is better than slow.
- Democracy on the web works.
- You don’t need to be at your desk to need an answer.
- You can make money without doing evil.
- There’s always more information out there.
- The need for information crosses all borders.
- You can be serious without a suit.
- Great just isn’t good enough.
Does Google subscribe to these still? Here are my thoughts:
- Yes, Google has maintained their simple design and accessibility to users with helpful information that is easy to access.
- Yes and no. Google sites search as their primary focus, but with the addition of other products like Gmail, Blogger, Orkut, Google Talk, YouTube, Picasa, Knol and others it is clear to see that providing information is not the “one” thing that they are focused on.
- Yes, Google has proven that they are consistently the fastest to return results.
- Not really. Google has changed, and continues to change the way of web democracy with different determining factors that are not always based upon a democratic model. (Google OS, SEL, TechCrunch)
- Yes, and Google has worked very diligently to provide their search services to mobile platforms and such.
- Yes, but are their efforts truly good throughout? Some speculate that their intentions are not this, but like many giants in industry like Wal-Mart, when you get big, your intent is always in question.
- Yes, Google has done a great job at bringing more information than just web pages and sites to the SERPs and adding to their index is a still happening.
- Yes, information does cross boarders, classes and so much more. The one thing that Google has added is the ability to translate a given page into your language.
- Yes, Google’s campus is teaming with (Google) t-shirts and jeans. But does a suit make you act differently? Of course, the fact that Google is a group of people that think differently and don’t want to break down the barrier that traditional companies have used in the past, like formal wear. Actions always speak louder than words. Plus, when people are comfortable, they tend to speak from their passions. Passion has always lent itself to ingenuity in my opinion.
- Yes, Google continues to build upon itself with additional services. Similar to AOL and Yahoo, Google has become a social portal on the web.
What’s next for Google? are they the next “big brother?”
Will they actually reinvent search? Personalize or universal?
Will relevancy go by the wayside in light of recently published information? or currency?
Will they continue to reinvent themselves as the years pass?
Will their focus continue to move away from search? maybe towards profit?
Will they become “evil?” or are they already?
Has the fact that they are now a public company change the way they act or are perceived by the public?
Can they keep their luster in the eyes of users? and stockholders?
I guess time will tell!
Feel free to share your thoughts!