Software, Digital Content, Geopolitics, Economics & More from of a Libertarian Serial Expat and Entrepreneur
In: search engines2 Jun 2005
This graph is definitely impressive. Kudos to the Google team for creating so much wealth, and to people buying at IPO time. I’m not one of them, I thought it would rocket and crash, so I’ve given up on pretending I know anything about what I’m talking about in this industry. Or is the stock market delusional and I’ll be proved right in the long term? For all those years I felt Yahoo could make a big "software comeback" if they wanted to, and it’s exactly what’s happening, so maybe I’m only half a buffoon. That and I did write before the IPO it would take time to burst the Google bubble.
In any case, I’m now using Yahoo as my primary web search engine (still using Google for news). Results seem slightly better. A query on, say, "gaming mouse" doesn’t put something written six years ago in the first spot, as is the case on Google. And there’s less spam. As I’m using Firefox to initiate queries the barrier to exit is zero and retraining is minimal, as Yahoo mimicked many of Google’s tricks. With Firefox I’ve given up on the Google toolbar and never looked back.
Google is to web search what Hotmail was to webmail a couple years ago: not a major innovation in a long time, and more spam by the day. Ripe for replacement, and you don’t even need to change your email address. It seems obvious Google hasn’t got a clue about how to properly handle commercial sites and tell apart those with relevant content from the rest.
Now that I have a whole omelette on my face with the GOOG explosion, I might as well reinstate my bearish outlook on the company! The lasting, defensible position? I don’t see it, and the market is becoming big enough to warrant more focus and resources from competitors. Contrarily to the slavish reporting and blogging around, Google is not the first company run by smart engineers each doing their own thang. The paramount example was Bell Labs within AT&T, an organization that has delivered orders of magnitude more innovation and hardcore research than Google probably ever will. Or think of Xerox. Look at where they are after market conditions changed under their feet, it’s not a pretty picture.
Many companies have too many marketers and too few engineers in charge. Google will prove to have tipped too far in the other direction.
I'm CEO of an online/mobile trade publishing firm in the marketing and defense verticals. We strive to make news and data digestible and useful in an environment that is noisier by the day.
This personal blog mixes my thoughts and interests on politics, business, publishing, software, and more. Over the years I have posted items that turned out spectacularly wrong, and a few posts that better stood the test of time.