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Are Google's Best Days In the Past?

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the they-were-cooler-when-only-we-knew-about-them dept.

Businesses 322

rsmiller510 writes "For a time, everything Google touched turned to gold, but lately a slew of bad press is creating a negative perception about the search giant."

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Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (4, Insightful)

intellitech (1912116) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280704)

..does not mean they can't still turn a profit.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (1, Flamebait)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280750)

Nor does it mean they can't return, possibly better than ever.

*cough*Apple*cough*

Best Days... for who? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280834)

For me? For you? Or for Google?

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280836)

Sergey Brin doesn't have terminal stage IV cancer QED not gonna happen.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280864)

Google would be fine without Larry and Sergey. I don't know how Apple could sell anything without Jobs.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (1, Insightful)

Cheech Wizard (698728) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280908)

Good products that "Just Work" sell themselves.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280998)

Compared to the other products on the market, Apple's only advantage is hype, losing their figurehead Steve Jobs, will put a damper on it.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281184)

Good products that "Just Work" sell themselves.

if only there was a company that sold those

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (0)

oh_my_080980980 (773867) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281354)

Apple...oh wait, you were trying to be funny.....haa....

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (5, Interesting)

Luckyo (1726890) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281496)

There is a subset of that thinking in usability (when studied as science). Textbook example is a sport wrist watch. On one hand, you can have one with a lot of features that can be accessed very quickly and a lot of info on the home screen, but requires a lot of buttons to control functions in a usable way.
Other is aimed at "we want something that just works" crowd (usually senior citizens), and has only one big red button and "just works" (and "illumination" button on the side for obvious reasons).

Reality - it "just works" for people who are willing to limit themselves to limited feature set given by the watch. It doesn't replace the one with many "confusing" buttons, and when it does it does it with a lot less efficiency.

Apple's advantage is that hype essentially steamrolls the "but the other features that are clunky/missing?" argument as hype claims that if iphone can't do it, you don't need it. Never mind that USB connectivity to a PC as an external drive, or ability to see email sender's name right from the home screen without having to go through "pretty" menus (to cite two of several obvious examples) have been a default feature in the smart phones for a long time. Apple is that "one button" watch that "just works" - so long as you're willing to accept that to even access and start timer will take you a lot longer that it would on a phone that does it the way "watch with many buttons" does.

And when hype will eventually run it's course and run out, you'll be left out with reality - that apple's version of "one button it just works" usability isn't all that good when you want to step outside those basic boundaries.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (5, Insightful)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280854)

Google is clearly lacking in some key areas, most obviously social.

Google is still untouched in search. A core internet technology.
The glorified RSS feeds that are facebook and twitter have no relevance to that market.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (5, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281028)

but their search is getting useless. link farms are still not being squashed, and they are allowing SEO scumbags to move results up the list for their clients who 9 times out of 11 dont have anything to do with the topic.

Google needs to do the Iron fist thing on search SEO's and put any SEO trickery or linkfarms at the BOTTOM of all search results. My exclude list for Google searching is getting ridiculously long.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (1, Offtopic)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281272)

My [censored] is getting ridiculously long.

All those penis enlargement ads are good for something at last

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281498)

You clearly don't understand the fundamental problem with "SEO trickery".

Allow me to enlighten you.
Google uses an algorithm to determine the relevance of pages. The problem is that SEO firms have reverse engineered that algorithm to the point where they can manufacture site rankings. As such Google's page ranking system can't tell the difference between a super relevant site, and a site that is lying about it's relevance but has the right answers to all the questions Google knows to ask.

It is similar to how a Rorschach test doesn't work on someone trained in evaluating the test (they know how their answers will be interpreted and can therefore give the answers that will lead the tester towards the conclusion they want to get). Another analogy would be a spy attempting to seduce a mark. Assuming they spy has done his/her reaserch they should know what the mark looks for in a partner and since they're lying they can appear to be the perfect date, while an honest person would likley have some flaw that compared with the fictional persona of the spy will seem less desirable.

There is no solution to that problem. At best Google can change their algorithm thus forcing the "SEO scumbags" to start over, but they will start over and they will again succeed. In truth the fact that it's taken this long for it to happen in the first place is rather commendable.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (3, Informative)

Kjella (173770) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281558)

People need search engines. You can bitch about it all you want, but unless there's a different company that can squash SEOs better than Google, they'll still own the market. And looking at hitslink they have a very stable 85% of the market. Unless you're seriously suggesting it's so bad that people will not search the Internet at all?

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (2)

ADRA (37398) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281580)

And yet Google still remains my #1 used web site online. Some may only ever browse what others point you at, but I actually go out and find things. farms and SEO and the like may make searching more annoying, but it doesn't reduce my need to do so. Facebook or the like will never supplant that need.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (2)

getNewNickName (980625) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281450)

Sure, Google is still king of search, but it hasn't been able to get much traction in other areas (e.g. social networking). The article was written from an investment point of view not technological. As an investment GOOG has been disappointing for the past few years compared to other tech leaders. So this begs the question whether or not its "best days", as an investment, are past. It still remains to be seen whether Android will be able to contribute significantly to the company's revenue growth. The key word is growth, MS still continues to make tons of money, but their future growth prospects remain dubious which is reflected in their stock price.

just because their best days aren't past (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281336)

Doesn't mean that their competitors wouldn't want to refer to google as dead or nonexistent.

In the meantime, google has had it's screwups, and had it's successes, and is doing far better than it's competitors because competition is fucking lazy and doing a bad job. Surprise? Not really.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (1)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281406)

The Microsoft strategy of relevance.

Re:Just because the "best days" are in the past.. (1)

Daniel Phillips (238627) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281416)

Speaking as somewhat of an expert on the subject there is no question that Google has changed from the hypergrowth, exciting, quasi utopian place it was. But similar to an adult reaching maturity its best earning years are still before it. Google's vaunted ethical standard has, ahem, issues, but to suggest these problems are on the scale as Microsoft would be deeply wrong. Google's corporate DNA still includes ethics as a driver, unlike some other companies I could mention (Sony, Microsoft, I'm looking at you). I still own all my Google stock, that should tell you everything you need to know about my opinion of GOOG's future earning power. Like Microsoft before it, Google was once and is no longer the first choice employer for top ranked new grads. Unlike Microsoft, Google's corporate culture has not degenerated to the point of complete dysfunctionality, though there are signs it may head in that direction in the absence of enlightened reforms driven proactively from the executive suite.

Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (5, Insightful)

Anrego (830717) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280708)

My perception:

They are no longer the cool new guys tearing up the internet and being a company for the people. They are big, diversified, making money hand over fist, and have attracted the requisite controversy, criticism, and bad press that comes with being big and diversified and making money hand over fist.

Despite everything, I still see them as one of the good guys. I think there’s always a severe whip back when you suddenly discover something that you thought was awesome is now merely ok. Google looks terrible when compared to what it was, but compare it to everything else and it looks pretty damn good.

And (flamewar time) I continued to be baffled over all the flack they got over the stupid wifi thing. They came clean, admitted everything, co-operated with the investigations and people still tore them 12 new ones. Personally I think they should have been commended for admitting they made a mistake rather than going into full on cover up mode.

To get back to the topic, it really required a definition of “Best”. Are they ever going to be the cool trendy upstart they once were: probably not. Are they going to continue making money hand over fist and growing like a spider until you shave with google razor blades: entirely possible.

As for not innovating I still think they’ve got it in them. They’ve had a string of bad luck, and they’ve failed in the social area but I suspect they’ll pull something killer out in the next little bit.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280804)

You're applying common sense.
Silly rabbit.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280856)

And (flamewar time) I continued to be baffled over all the flack they got over the stupid wifi thing. They came clean, admitted everything, co-operated with the investigations and people still tore them 12 new ones. Personally I think they should have been commended for admitting they made a mistake rather than going into full on cover up mode.

Maybe that reaction is why companies tend to go into cover up mode. If they really did make an honest mistake, what do they gain by fessing up and cooperating vs trying to hide it? The answer is nothing, and I think Google probably learned a bad lesson from the whole ordeal.

I hate to say it, but most consumers and voters are short sighted idiots.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (1)

Anrego (830717) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280924)

I think Google probably learned a bad lesson from the whole ordeal

Yup. And anyone watching as well. I have a feeling no one is going to be as open as they were about a mistake again for quite some time.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (1)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281542)

Google only fessed up because of inquiries from the German government. You can bet that you would have never heard about it otherwise. I can't believe people actually buy Google's story of "accidentally" archiving 600GB of personal data for four years.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (2)

dstyle5 (702493) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280874)

You had me at fried potatoes...

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (0)

thijsh (910751) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280916)

It all makes sense (except the title, hmmm potatoes...), and while I totally agree with your opinion about Google as the company, Google as the #1 simple search provider is over and in the past... A lot of people are jumping ship to any of the large list of competitors, I personally started using duckduckgo [duckduckgo.com] because of the privacy and simplicity for example.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (1)

Reapman (740286) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281210)

"Google as the #1 simple search provider is over and in the past"

Oh? Who's the #1 simple search provider? Duckduckgo? Considering I've never heard of them, I doubt that. May be some argument with Bing or Yahoo but I SERIOUSLY doubt they come close to matching Google for searches, much less surpasing them. Duckduckgo sounds like an interesting competitor, and competition is great, but I think your overstating Googles decline in Search. That would be like saying because I use Ubuntu (love Ubuntu btw) Microsofts days as the #1 OS provider is over and in the past.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (1)

thijsh (910751) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281534)

No, Google does just does not really qualify as 'simple' anymore. Once too many features are added it is not the #1 simple search by de-factor elimitation. I did not claim duckduckgo is the new #1, because that is a personal preference and clearly not decided by any majority like you point out. It's just that the thing that made Google great is exactly what it sucks at now... they may still have a huge search volume (and so does Bing), but that is beside the point. People who want a basic search and get to the best results fast are looking for the next Google...

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (1)

Anrego (830717) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281418)

Dunno if I'd say they're finished as the #1.

Certainly I think google and bing are going to go at it bare knuckle .. but I think google stands a good chance at staying on top.

That said, I think that #1 is probably going to get a lot smaller. Lots of those no-name search engines are becoming practical, and you are seeing a lot of people saying "I use x for y specialized reason" these days. duckduckgo will probably never get to the top, but it can certainly nibble on it.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (1)

AlXtreme (223728) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281428)

Thanks for the tip.

I was using Clusty before it got Yippified, after that Scroogle. I'll give duckduckgo a try.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (1)

SmilingBoy (686281) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281590)

Why is it that in various forums incl Slashdot in recent months, duckduckgo is always mentioned when it comes to search (invariably with a link)? I don't think they are that special to warrant that attention; they seem to be mainly using bing results.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280934)

I agree with a lot of what you said. Especially the part about Google not being as great as when it was a start up, but still being pretty good. At least for me, I still have positive thoughts when I think of Google as opposed to some other tech companies, like Microsoft. Maybe it's just carry over from older days or because they talk a lot about open source, but I still like Google.

Also I feel like this article was solely written to attract attention. The title and beginning of the article paint Google to look like it might be crumbling and at the very end he goes back on himself and says that they are still an amazing company. It felt like he was writing a sensationalist article to get page views and I didn't really appreciate it.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280994)

Bad press means, they kick the ass of competitors willing to pay persons to smear them. In the beginning they had no real competitors.
Just look at the Smartphone. For Google that is just a trick. For Nokia it was vital.

If they want an open confrontation with Microsoft they can, just for fun. Put 30 Mio annually on Wine development [winehq.org] and Windows is obsolete within 5 years. Or 50 Mio annually on Libreoffice [libreoffice.org] and the Microsoft Office cash cow would get slaughtered.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (2)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281380)

But neither of them are that helpful to Google.

Mucking around with Office was a huge waste for Sun. Google is doing similar, but with a real chance at gaining from it (their docs). Perhaps if they could get truly seamless integration with the desktop app, and their cloud, it could be a win. But, I would think it's unlikely OSS is going to want to do that.

Wine could actually be something for them, as at least for now, Linux tends to default towards google searches (usually through the distro). Still, the money gained by people getting Google default - the money paid to the distro could be less than losing some to MS, but what they get comes fully to them.

I will say, it was the sponsorship money paid to Firefox that spawned Chrome more than anything else. Google was paying Mozilla lots of money every year (Mozilla gets 100 Million in search royalties). I don't know what Chrome costs, but it appears pretty reasonable they the reduced search royalty could fund the developement. At least for a while Chrome was primarily eating Firefox's market.

With an improved Wine, unless they make a real solid distro too, there won't be the reduced royalty that come with Chrome.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281002)

And (flamewar time) I continued to be baffled over all the flack they got over the stupid wifi thing. They came clean, admitted everything, co-operated with the investigations and people still tore them 12 new ones. Personally I think they should have been commended for admitting they made a mistake rather than going into full on cover up mode.

I won't flame, but question that you got the timeline right. As covered extensivly in European press at the time, Google only came clean after the German authorities demanded to audit the data - which they did despite Google already assuring them that no private information were being collected.

From BBC News: [bbc.co.uk]
"Google has been the subject of scrutiny from data protection agencies around the world, following news that software in its Street View cars collected personal information.
This was revealed following a request from the German data commissioner to audit all the data being collected by Street View cars "

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (1)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281594)

That's the big fact that constantly gets ignored. I've seen it claimed more than once by people on Slashdot that Google were the ones who "came clean." No! Google at first denied that they were scanning any personal data -- only after being pressed by German regulators did they finally admit that they had scanned and stored 600GB worth of personal data over the course of four years.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (1)

BuR4N (512430) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281214)

I agree with much of what you say, but diversified is not something I would label Google, they sell ads, and it accounts for +90% of their revenue, then they have a small cloud operation going, but if anyone would eat into their ad business they would be toast.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (1)

bemymonkey (1244086) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281218)

I could hardly agree more.

In addition, as a heavy Google user (Android and about a dozen non-Android Google services), I've got to say that they're still innovating at a pace that's dizzying at times. Hell, 2-step-verification nearly gave me a nerdgasm... the latest Android version of Google Maps... Honeycomb...

I can't wait for more...

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (1)

gstrickler (920733) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281238)

Google Razor, the fast shave available.

Try new Google Instant Razor (beta), it starts shaving as soon as you pick it up.

Re:Fried Potatoes and gravy with garlic and spices (0)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281518)

And (flamewar time) I continued to be baffled over all the flack they got over the stupid wifi thing. They came clean, admitted everything, co-operated with the investigations and people still tore them 12 new ones. Personally I think they should have been commended for admitting they made a mistake rather than going into full on cover up mode.

How could you be baffled over it? It doesn't make you pause a bit that this technically-minded company--the biggest internet company in the world--somehow accidentally scanned and saved people's data for four freaking years? They only came clean after inquiries from German regulators and claim they were totally unaware of the 600 GB of data they had collected up to that point. Seriously?

If they were any other company, you'd be tearing them a new one. Could you imagine the uproar if Apple had done it? They can't even set restrictions for App Store submissions to their own platform without a cadre of whiny haters showing up to tell everyone how evil their "walled garden" is. Google can sniff people's WiFi data for four years, yet Google fans don't bat an eye.

It depends (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280738)

...on what happens in the future.

Gee! (3, Insightful)

hjf (703092) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280752)

Gee! Some attention-whore journalist/blogger (I think that's redundant) claims google is dead, it MUST BE TRUE!

I won't believe it until Netcraft confirms it.

Waiting for that 404 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280808)

Then I'll start to think it has happened. Until then, there are plenty more worthwhile targets for journalistic venom.
Oh wait, we have had our Apple Sucks quota for the week.
Ok, they've moved on to Linux sucks.
Whatever next? Microsoft sucks? Nah. They know who pays them bar bills.

Re:Waiting for that 404 (1, Funny)

DrgnDancer (137700) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281240)

Whatever next? Microsoft sucks? Nah. They know who pays them bar bills.

And man can Microsoft pay a bar bill. Went to Supercomputing06 in Tampa. Microsoft rented an entire (small, but upscale) *mall* for their show party. Everything was free: live music all night, open bar (and not just well stuff, Bombay Sapphire and tonic? Sure!)... It was awesome. Of course, I still didn't want to buy their cluster computing OS, but it was a Hell of a party.

Re:Gee! (2)

Anne_Nonymous (313852) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281154)

Tragedy today, as former leading search engine Google was eaten by wolves.

Re:Gee! (1)

idontgno (624372) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281422)

Really.

Is this the first time the "Steven King is dead" slashtroll got onto the front page? Seems to me it isn't, but I may have mercifully forgotten specifics.

Re:Gee! (1)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281606)

I bet you'd consider the article a piece of accurate journalism if it was favorable to Google.

"a slew of bad press"... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280774)

...isn't the bad part; the facts behind their intelligence gathering and data mining and that they share a bed with certain governments are.

oh rly. (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280780)

You expect me to take a google critique seriously from someone running asp.net?

Re:oh rly. (5, Interesting)

SQLGuru (980662) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280852)

Actually, it look more like Classic ASP. I don't see much in the source that would indicate otherwise. (ASP.NET tends to be -- isn't required, but tends to be --- .ASPX, not .ASP).

So, not only is the guy running on the Microsoft stack, he isn't even that current in it. I'm not sure I'd put too much creedence in any topic he discusses.

Re:oh rly. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281152)

I'm not sure I'd put too much creedence in any topic he discusses.

But whyever not? CCR rocks, man, and at least we'd have some bitchin' lyrics to distract us from the crappy, specious article.

Or did you mean credence? ;)

Re:oh rly. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281466)

Absolutely, SQL Guru! You should scrap something that just works and make it the latest and greatest so that people will respect your opinion!

-- MongoDB

Article Summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280794)

Are Google's best days past? They might be! Maybe not.

Whats with the google articles today? (4, Insightful)

Reapman (740286) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280800)

To answer the summary: No

I'd elaborate, but decided to go with the same depth this "summary" provides.

Re:Whats with the google articles today? (2)

DrgnDancer (137700) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281292)

I think this was actually more informative than the article. Let alone the summary. "People in Egypt are not naming their babies "Google" therefore it is dying." ?!?

Re:Whats with the google articles today? (1)

heptapod (243146) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281426)

Gotta be a conspiracy since there were two JRR [slashdot.org] Tolkein-related [slashdot.org] articles posted yesterday!

Marketshare (4, Interesting)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280812)

Not to rip on an article that's just a bunch of one-sentence summaries of other articles and a saucy eyebrow-raise, but the 1% drop cited in the article is in search marketshare. The total value of search ads went up by about 10% in the same period, meaning that Google's revenues almost certainly grew over that period. It's just that they grew slightly more slowly than the newcomers.

Re:Marketshare (1)

magus_melchior (262681) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281080)

That's about the same level of detail and attention span as the typical day trader, who chases after the latest get-rich-quick scheme that flashes something shiny or sexy.

Nuance and sense are not part of that thought process, unfortunately.

WTF? (4, Insightful)

doubleplusungodly (1929514) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280814)

A pretty large majority of the article went into arguing that just because Google lacks good social networking tools, it is declining. What kind of logic is that?

Re:WTF? (1)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281024)

Hell if I know. When I found out that was his "reasoning", I stopped listening to him. Oh noes, only social networking sites can run a successful business! Because people aren't raving in the streets about how great Google is, they're on death's doorstep! This author is an idiot.

Re:WTF? (1)

kiwimate (458274) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281068)

If you see social networking as being a genuine paradigm shift rather than just a segment of the market, then it's pretty solid logic, actually. It's the same kind of logic that said Microsoft had no choice but to bolster their game when it became apparent they were lacking on the internet side of the game, back when Netscape Navigator was king.

* And yes, I used the word paradigm because it's appropriate in this context. Don't attack the supposed buzzword; respond to the argument I make, please.

Re:WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281560)

Paradigm isn't a buzzword, "paradigm shift", on the other hand, is.

And paradigm shift in what context? You can't just say social networking is a paradigm shift with absolutely zero context. What paradigm(s) are you talking about? This is why buzzwords get criticized. They distract from the fact that the person using them doesn't know how to properly form an argument and probably doesn't know what they're talking about.

Social networking is clearly not replacing Google. Social networking is a new medium for human networks which have existed since we developed language and formed social networks by talking to each other. Such sites don't somehow suddenly make Google irrelevant. Such an assertion is absolutely absurd. Tell me the last time you used Facebook as your general search engine. When was the last time you used Twitter to find driving directions?

Re:WTF? (1)

calmofthestorm (1344385) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281446)

(begin all caps) zomg social networks are going to replace email, search, im, subversion, ssh, and dynamically loadable kernel modules!!! singularity lol! (end all caps)

Social networking is clearly an important and growing field, but let's try to keep things in perspective.

even his face seems like the face of the troll (1)

mapkinase (958129) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280818)

http://img.lightreading.com/internetevolution/RonMiller.gif [lightreading.com]

look at the smugly smile.

Re:even his face seems like the face of the troll (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281552)

Why did he choose gif over jpg for a photo?

What the heck is Google? (5, Funny)

aplusjimages (939458) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280820)

Never mind I'll just Yahoo it.

Re:What the heck is Google? (1)

waldonova (769039) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281034)

Is Yahoo a verb now? That's my measure of a good search engine. I remember the heady days when things were Alta Vistilated.

Re:What the heck is Google? (1)

Torvac (691504) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281196)

OMG let me yahoo that for you i mean
http://lmgtfy.com/?q=is+yahoo+a+verb+now [lmgtfy.com]
and to be totally funny google returns as No.1:
"Is google a verb now? - Yahoo! Answers"

Re:What the heck is Google? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281340)

I don't know if Yahoo is a verb now or not. I should Dewey Decimal it.

Re:What the heck is Google? (1)

calmofthestorm (1344385) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281456)

not sure, let me Bing that for you on Google.

TEH GOOGLE IS LIVING IN THE PAST !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280828)

Happy and I'm smiling
walk a mile to drink your water
You know I'd love to love you
And above you there's no other
We'll go walking out
while others shout of war's disaster
Ohwe won't give in
Let's go living in the past

Once I used to join in
Every boy and girl was my friend
Now there's revolutionbut they don't know
what they're fighting
Let us close our eyes;
outside their lives go on much faster
Ohwe won't give in
we'll keep living in the past

These guys got a Grammy, beating out Lars and Co, ??

Re:TEH GOOGLE IS LIVING IN THE PAST !! (3, Funny)

PeterKraus (1244558) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280884)

As a proper Tull fan I can only reply - the flute is a heavy metal instrument!

Youtube (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280844)

They certainly took the glory out of youtube with their lame advertising.

Re:Youtube (1)

redemtionboy (890616) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280894)

You mean by turning it into a profitable business? Or should things remain like twitter and just be a giant money pit for the pleasure of the proletariat.

Mentality (1)

redemtionboy (890616) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280846)

Google is successful and will continue to remain successful both in a quality product sense and a fiscal sense because of one thing, they continue to think like a startup instead of a conglomerate. Things like 20% time have been major assets to their success, and as long as they keep that focus on fresh ideas from within, Google will continue to be successful. A few stumblings here and there aside.

that is what happens... (4, Insightful)

Mr.Fork (633378) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280862)

...when you have the best search engine, tied to the best internet ad support, tied to great free thought-provoking-industry changing office products, map tools, tool bars for your browser, chat tools, phone tools, and it all comes from ONE company. What else can you do when everyone is watching every move, ever senior management comment, every action?

Then again, it does beg to ask, is this typical media bullsheit with typical negative stories that are solely geared towards making money rather than a balanced approach to news reporting? When does the news cross the line when it starts focusing on areas that it's owners have a vested interest in ensuring their 'enemy' is bashed at every opportunity? Is this really a sponge-worthy story?

Re:that is what happens... (0)

fermion (181285) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281204)

It may be the best search engine, but that does not mean it is good enough. I just did a search looking up generic topic that has to do with utilities and government permitting. On all search keywords, the top links were advertising spaces with no information, and the most of the rest were ad pages set up individual companies, though related to the search. Somewhat relavent information was half way down the page, but the search did not turn up any good results. This has happened to me a lot lately.

In the spreadsheet the graph still does not have trendlines on scatterplots. That is not a critical feature, but it has been in every spreadsheet since the 90's.

Maps still do not have directions for highway travel primarily. On some trips the side roads can be dangerous, and it would be good to avoid them. Likewise, there is not social option to review roads as Google now allows us to review services. Obviously no profit in it.

This is what the article is saying. It is not being biased, it is stating fact. Google is fat and happy so innovation is not going to happen. Stating this fact is bullshit negative stories. It is a problem. If Google search is not going to work, then who is going to make it? If Google is not going to innovate as MS innovated MS Office during the 90's, then who will? If Google social services are primarily to support the primary ad business, is that value to consumers?

We the people have no vested interest in any corporation. We want stuff and only care about who is providing the best good enough stuff. If a company stops providing the best good enough stuff, they will be less relavent. It is in the interest of the people to ridicule companies that have stopped innovating, since that will either cause them to start innovating or open up the door to competition. No one gets a free ride just because you did something interesting last week. Ask myspace, ask AOL, ask general motors(well, if you employ enough high school dropouts you do get a federal grant). But really, if my search does not return good result, what good is Google to me?

Google's Bad Press (1)

thestudio_bob (894258) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280876)

Google's bad press? Well, they do want to be like Apple. It comes with the territory.

Not a great article (5, Informative)

Jim Hall (2985) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280892)

I read the article (it's not that long) but let me save you the trouble: it's not a great article. In fact, it's pointless. You don't need to read very far before he presents his conclusion:

While Google is still clearly riding high in the general consumer market, it seems to have lost its innovative edge, the one variable that always seemed to help it stay ahead of the market. But whether the company has peaked or not is still an open question.

Emphasis mine.

So the tech writer (Ron Miller) doesn't know either. He presents both sides, and seems totally unsure about what he's talking about. To summarize the article:

  • Facebook and Twitter got the tech attention during the Egypt riots, not Google. [Not sure what his point is, here.]
  • JC Penney's tampering with their search results
  • Google might lose ground to vertical search in the future
  • Google dropped 1% in comScore

But:

  • Google still controls 2/3 of the market, and 1% not a trend.
  • Google doing well with Android
  • Bing not a threat
  • It's all about perception, anyway.

So yeah, this was a pointless article.

"Bad Press" == MS sponsored smear campaign? (3, Informative)

walterbyrd (182728) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280904)

Quick! Someone tell m$ (1)

phonewebcam (446772) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280932)

They need to create a search engine.

Depends on what Google does. (1)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280956)

Google's not dead yet, and as long as they continue to dominate search and a few other niches(Maps, email), they'll be alive.

This would be like asking if Apple's best days are in the past when they were going through their revolving door of CxOs. If asked then, the answer would've been overwhelmingly "yes."

Re:Depends on what Google does. (4, Insightful)

0123456 (636235) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281018)

Google's not dead yet, and as long as they continue to dominate search and a few other niches(Maps, email), they'll be alive.

The problem is that they're trying to dominate search by making it 'smarter', with the end result that it increasingly sucks. Most times I look for anything out of the ordinary using very clear search terms I end up with 90+% of the results being crap I don't want because it 'intelligently' decided that I wasn't looking for what I was asking it to search for.

So I'm definitely looking for a better alternative for searches which isn't trying so hard. Yeah, I know I can put magic characters in the search thing so it actually searches for the thing I asked it to search for, but I shouldn't have to do that.

Best USENET archive days are long-gone (1)

davidwr (791652) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280964)

I can't speak for the rest of Google but the days when I could rely on its USENET archives are long gone.

Anyone else remember the pre-Google dejanews.com?

Whoopdeedoo (1)

cstanley8899 (1998614) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280970)

It's a search engine. Who cares? Honestly, Google has to be the most overrated company in U.S. history. Perhaps it is more like "People stop caring as much about overrated company". In that sense I have to say "Congratulations America!"

what does old friend Chris Dibona say? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35280974)

He was a /. editor and now has some fancy title at Google. They should ask for his "responsible opposing viewpoint", Weekend Update style.

Schmidt ? (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 3 years ago | (#35280990)

isnt this why sergei and larry sacked schmidt recently ? because he was taking google away from the principles, and causing anti-consumer scandals ?

bleat! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281054)

Everyone bleat in unison....bleat bleat.

Microsoft's PR firms love to spread this garbage. Eat the garbage sheeple!

Re:bleat! (1)

bazmail (764941) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281102)

Oh god, a google fanboy. Is that even a thing?

They're "The Man" in my eyes (1)

GodfatherofSoul (174979) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281128)

The insane privacy violations, hand-to-mouth relationship with the Feds, crappy search results, blah blah blah. There are a lot of corporations run by douche bags that I'm forced to interact with every day. Will I still use Google? Yes? Do I have my Applehead loyalty to them any more? No!

Re:They're "The Man" in my eyes (2)

Tuan121 (1715852) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281190)

Will I still use Google? Yes? Do I have my Applehead loyalty to them any more? No!

Well, will you still use Google?

Google is not declining (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281234)

I opened up Google Chrome, checked my Gmail, googled slashdot (I am lazy with bookmarks) and posted this comment. As Mark Twain put it, the reports of it's death have been greatly exaggerated.

I am also considering an Android phone or a tablet.

Turned to gold, eh? (3, Interesting)

LeoZ (1180331) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281254)

So everything that Google's touched has turned to gold? Like Gmail where you can't sort emails by sender or by subject? Where emails whose subject lines match existing label filters still end up in the Spam folder? Where searching doesn't always work in the spam folder? Or Google Groups where (last time I checked about a year ago) you couldn't integrate a Google Calendar into your Google Group and, instead, had to use an external link? Or Google Documents where you can't create columns in a text document? Or Google Maps where, up until this year, you couldn't clear your search results without having to refresh the page? My point is that Google starts projects but doesn't finish them. When Google actually decides to focus on completing existing projects then they'll start turning things to gold. Until then....

I would have agreed with this until this AM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281276)

wen I stumbled upon using Google Listen for my new Droid phone and found that I could continue to subscribe and manage my podcasts for free with an app even more idiot proof than iTunes but without all the slow bloat.

As long as they keep giving me the stuff I want for free (or "free") with less annoyance than other companies, the more I'm still thinking of them as "glory dazed"

pishposh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281388)

Google is doing good work with their prediction API, bigquery, apps for government........ its far more than 'search'.

They are subject to the same hate as MS is due to their size and success.

It becomes 'cool' to hate google just as its been 'cool' to despise MS.

to hell with that nonsense.

Chrome and Android (2)

kwishot (453761) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281476)

The numbers speak for themselves:

Chrome release: September 2008
Chrome market share; Dec 2009: 4.63%
Chrome market share; Feb 12011: 10.7%

Android release: September 2008
Android smartphone market share; Q1 2010: 9%
Android smartphone market share; Q4 2010: 33%

/. Effect (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35281488)

Considering their network will go down as soon as the /. effect hits, things could be better.

Once upon a time... (1)

gstrickler (920733) | more than 3 years ago | (#35281640)

Many year ago, I used to bookmark various search engines. Everyone knew Yahoo, Google was only for the "in the know" crowd. If you didn't find it there, you went to Alta Vista, or Excite, or lycos, or some other engine that I bookmarked because I never used it enough to remember the name. I don't bookmark search engines anymore, I just Google it. Even even if I need a Babelfish translation, I Google "babelfish".

Gmail beats yahoo mail. While yahoo seems to do a pretty good job of filtering spam from my yahoo mail acct, some makes it through, and some legit messages go into it's spam folder. I never get spam on my gmail acct, and the web interface is about 2x as fast.

Google Maps beats Mapquest and Bing maps. Fast, reliable, flexible, and easy to read. Not to mention funny (try getting directions from Japan to China or Japan to Los Angeles).

Gee, I guess Google's best days are in the past. How could I have missed that?

Oh wait, Chrome is new, and fast. It's faster than Safari, even on Mac OS. It includes Adobe Flash built-in, so I don't have the Flash Player plug-in installed on my machine for any other browser. If I want/need to use a site that requires Flash, I use Chrome for that site. If it doesn't work in Chrome...actually, I haven't encountered that yet, so I can't say for certain what I would do.

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