Globonomics!

Consulting|Technology|International business

The Google story — book review

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Here is my take on the book. I wrapped up reading the book in 2 days flat! I did not put it down. It was enthralling!

Sergey Brin and Larry Page have built the foundation of a ‘larger than life’ concept that began in Stanford when they were PhD students.

The link to their initial research is here http://infolab.stanford.edu/~backrub/google.html

The business of searching for information was quite a daunting task in the 1990’s but not anymore – thanks largely to Google’s phenomenal capability in this specialized field of “search”.

I experienced this first hand during my very first exposure to the Internet/World wide web (WWW) way back in 1998 when I was offered a job by TCS and I wanted to know more on TCS – the company. I went to a cybercafe (run by a foreigner in India) and paid the chap Rs. 40 to surf the web for 1-hour! I had no clue as to how to proceed. I simply remember using Yahoo! search engine on a Netscape browser – those were the heydays when Netscape ruled the roost!

Can you believe that I had my first email id created by my friend (from BITS Pilani) in 1998 at a cybercafe?! To think today, I have two entire blogs (from 2004 till date) and act strange on a day when I don’t see emails! Such is the sheer power of the information age and no one exploited it so far better than the Google founders!

Hats off to them for changing the way we seek information in today’s world!

There is this popular saying that when the Berlin Wall fell, the Industrial age gave way to the Information age! The telecom/dot com boom of the 1990’s gave way to thousands of miles of fiber optic undersea cables that connected the entire world so this information could be processed within the blink of an eye! Want to run a simple test. Some people are able to send emails to their colleagues sitting next to them (say, in a country like India) with the email server located in the USA and before they reach that colleague to let the person know that the email was sent, the probability of that colleague having received that email might be about 99% – provided there are no major corporate email servers/messaging servers that queue etc. for the email and provided there is less traffic!

Type anything on Google and hit “Google Search”. The information is processed, assimilated and displayed to you in order of relevance in the wink of an eye!

This is the raw power/speed of information today!

The Netscape revolution brought the power of the web to the fore that millions of dot coms tried to emulate to make a quick buck.

The takeaway from the book is that the entire Google brand – one of the most powerful brands available on this earth today has been built from scratch through word of mouth advertising! Fantastic!

Furthermore, the work culture of Google is really cool! Not just that, Google decided to not to take Wall Street advise on taking themselves public in 2004 but instead relied on their own auctioning for their IPO (Initial public offering)! These are things I did not know about this behemoth!

I think a course on Google is a sureshot recipe for the International brand management professor teaching managers to build brands and promote them without spending a penny on advertising! The irony is that Google’s entire revenue model is based purely on this very concept of advertising. So while Google themselves did not advertise for the Google brandname to make it what it is today, Google’s existance is based largely on advertising and the power of its simple yet unique concept – “Search”!

Google’s future ventures sound equally exciting with them foraying into online libraries etc.

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Written by Naveen Athresh

April 10, 2007 at 9:27 pm

One Response

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  1. Thank You

    Alex

    April 23, 2007 at 1:05 pm


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