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Monday, November 21, 2005

Cringley On Google's Domination

Robert Cringley has an interesting piece on how Google will dominate the Internet:

There will be the Internet, and then there will be the Google Internet, superimposed on top. We'll use it without even knowing. The Google Internet will be faster, safer, and cheaper. With the advent of widespread GoogleBase (again a bit-schlepping app that can be used in a thousand ways -- most of them not even envisioned by Google) there's suddenly a new kind of marketplace for data with everything a transaction in the most literal sense as Google takes over the role of trusted third-party info-escrow agent for all world business. That's the goal.

All this is based, of course, on Google's proven network and hardware expertise. Have you seen Google's Search Appliance? They ship you a 1U prebuilt server. You connect it to your network, fill out a simple configuration screen, and it scans and indexes your web site (or sites) for you. Google monitors and manages it remotely, and sucks up the data and adds it to theirs. You just plug the thing in and turn it on. It just works. You need do nothing else to keep it running. Google understands how to do this stuff. Microsoft definitely does not.

And there lies the differences between the two companies. Last week, I wrote about Windows Live and Office Live as Microsoft's best attempts at pretending to be Google. And Google will do those kinds of applications, too. But they'll build them atop a network infrastructure that Microsoft can't match.

Worth a read if you have five minutes. But the recent breach of Gmail might put a damper on the scenario that Cringley has laid out.