Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Google Keep End-of-Life Date Forecasted

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the keep-until-this-time dept.

It's funny.  Laugh. 164

An anonymous reader writes "A smart aleck journalist for UK's Guardian newspaper has turned the tables on Google by compiling data on 39 of the company's terminated projects, summarized in a table and bar graph. The mean lifespan of the doomed products turns out to be almost exactly 4 years, which led Mr. Arthur to conclude that your data would be safe with Google Keep — until March 2017, give or take a few months. Of course, this assumes that Keep is destined to be one of those products and services that wouldn't be Kept, or rather 'didn't gain traction with users' in the familiar lingo of Google marketing."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Don't scroogle me, brah (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250687)

Don't get Scroggled!

headlines write themselves! (5, Funny)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251291)

I'm going to forecast the headlines:

"Google doesn't keep Google Keep"

"What's keeping Google from keeping Google Keep?"

"Keep on keeping: Google keeps Google Keep (for now)"

Re:headlines write themselves! (1)

DragonTHC (208439) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251941)

love the language.

But seriously, the submitter is a moron who had a slow news day.

Keep is tied directly to docs and drive. So, your data isn't going anywhere.

and nothing of value was lost.

Re:headlines write themselves! (4, Insightful)

Junta (36770) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252431)

Even docs and drive aren't guaranteed. That's the whole thing with hosting services, they could disappear and there would be nothing you can do about it. So anything on cloud storage provider better be backed up by you, and applications to manage the content should either be free or you should have a persistent license and ability to run not tied to the continued whims and welfare of the vendor.

Re:headlines write themselves! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43252665)

Your points are all valid. However in the case of Keep - Keep is a pretty strong word as the classic use case for this is a shopping list, a note saying "remember to clean the barbecue", etc. Nothing that matters if it is gone - and nothing that needs attention for more than a few days. (The rest of drive is certainly different).

I don't understand all the anger over Google (5, Insightful)

i_ate_god (899684) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250721)

Yeah, I miss things like Code Search.

Well that's the only thing I used really.

But like, no one had to pay for these services. There was no contractual obligation in play. What responsibility does Google have to spend time and money on infrastructure on products that are used by the minority of people?

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (4, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250777)

They don't have to. People are just pointing out that Google has a pattern of introducing services as trial balloons, and then discontinuing them a few years later if it doesn't fit into their overalls strategy. If you understand that and are okay with it, no problem. If you'd rather not have to scramble to find a replacement in a few years in the (not that unlikely) circumstance where the service is shut down, however, you might want to look elsewhere.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (5, Insightful)

jockm (233372) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250923)

People are just pointing out that Google has a pattern of introducing services as trial balloons, and then discontinuing them a few years later if it doesn't fit into their overalls strategy.

There is another term for that: Let a thousand flowers bloom. This is what Google has always done, try things. The things that work, that have an audience that can justify continued operation then they live. The ones that don't fail.

This is no different than how most companies work. The backlash against Readers closure is silly. Products fail, companies pivot, they aren't required to keep things going in perpetuity.

And Google lets you get your data out, which so many other failed products don't.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (2)

idontgno (624372) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251097)

So, your argument is that software is a popularity contest?

Very perceptive. Market share is just popularity. And the unpopular eventually lose, every time.

So the object lesson is: if you depend of a software product, make sure you depend on a popular software product. Otherwise, expect to be inconvenienced (or worse) sooner rather than later.

Potential object lesson 2: don't depend on any one else's software product. That's the point of the Free Software movement. But that requires a degree of technical competence to provide independent support, so that's beyond realistic expectations for the majority.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251427)

You're confusing software with services. Software is not a popularity contest, services are. One of these things you /have/, the other you /use/. It's strange you'd try and equate the two.

Don't like the idea of a service going away, don't use it. If it's not a utility like power or water, critical for basic survival in the modern age, services come and go all the time.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (3, Insightful)

jockm (233372) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251565)

No my argument is that nothing is really ever assured. Anything and anyone can fail. Asteroids hit the earth, fires burn down houses, hard drives die, commercial software can fail to find a market, etc etc etc.

The world of software is littered with the corpses of dead companies and products. It has always been thus. Even free software can end up orphaned and so unmaintained it won't work on modern systems. It is foolish to believe any product will exist forever.

In the same way you should have a good 3, 2, 1 Backup strategy [dpbestflow.org] for your data, you should have a plan for what to do if products you rely on stop working.

I really don't get your point...

Re: I don't understand all the anger over Google (2)

PixetaledPikachu (1007305) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251655)

Well, for free, ad-supported service? Yes. More users means more eyes for their ads

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251733)

Where "That Work" is defined as is good for us to put ad's or use the information.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

jockm (233372) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251847)

Yes google earns money though ads. This isn't news. No one is forcing you to use Keep.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (2)

Grizzley9 (1407005) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251783)

The backlash against Readers closure is silly.

That may be true (I was never a user), but that does not negate the bad PR they are getting from geeks telling normal people about not trusting Google anymore.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

jockm (233372) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251815)

Yeah I am not sure how true that is. If you can show some quantifiable effect, please do. Otherwise I suspect the so called Normal People will just continue to act as they otherwise would. I think we overestimate our influence on them.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (3, Informative)

Grizzley9 (1407005) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252237)

Yeah I am not sure how true that is. If you can show some quantifiable effect, please do. Otherwise I suspect the so called Normal People will just continue to act as they otherwise would. I think we overestimate our influence on them.

Does it affect common users? Yes as I and others that usually vouch for Google are now cautious. They really should have held off longer between the two announcements and added more features to Keep. I won't be using it and will likely be wary of new services and will look to have alternatives lined out to switch current ones. Basically, I'm not as loyal to Google anymore, and that hurts them in the long run as I'm not alone.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (2)

jockm (233372) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252733)

That is a logical argument, not an example of quantified evidence. Show me some evidence that regular users — who either never used Reader or stopped using it some time ago — are more concerned if Google will kill products or services or not; then we can talk.

But I am not interested in arguing about theoretical measurements of angel's tap shoes...

Re: your sig (1)

OneAhead (1495535) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251003)

I don't get your sig. Almost all the public domain works on the kindle are for free (2005 out of 2073 to be precise). It's not that they will get rich charging for this one. Or is the way you phrased it some kind of American pop culture reference?

Clarification (1)

OneAhead (1495535) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251139)

I mean, other than the obvious reference to the first sentence of the work, which doesn't strike me as particularly funny.

Re: I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251819)

I can understand why they end of life things that are ad supported they cannot monetise, ie Reader, however, they also end of life things that they are selling, such as Postini.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250783)

I miss when their web search actually worked properly.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (3, Interesting)

rokstar (865523) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250819)

Conversely there is no obligation to use their services either, which I think is the larger point. Their "responsibility" is to not pissing off a sufficiently large portion of their user base such that they have no interest in trying their new products.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251751)

Worse, the "minority" that uses these products are usually the geeks and early adopters who are disproportionately important in driving technology trends. Alienating them is hardly a good idea -- how much would it really cost to have a small team just dedicated to minimal maintenance of EOL'd products?

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (5, Interesting)

cultiv8 (1660093) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250837)

What responsibility does Google have to spend time and money on infrastructure on products that are used by the minority of people?

It would be nice if they open-sourced these projects and then let the "minority of people" who actually use it maintain it themselves.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251481)

I agree that they are not directly being paid for all the services and products they are bringing to us all the tim. Though, this is no minority we're talking about. I am pretty sure is a big majority actually. And I also agree with "It would be nice if they open-sourced these projects". If they are always standing there "in the name of open source", and actually that's why a lot of google products followers actually follow Google, then why don't they just be real open source? Right now they are showing the world they are not less profit oriented than MS, whom they always fight back.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

Ksevio (865461) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251737)

But a lot of them aren't particularly innovative code wise - they're just convenient because Google hosts them. Google Wave had some interesting stuff in it, so they released that, but there are plenty of RSS aggregators out there and it's easy to code a new one.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (2)

jopsen (885607) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251985)

What responsibility does Google have to spend time and money on infrastructure on products that are used by the minority of people?

It would be nice if they open-sourced these projects and then let the "minority of people" who actually use it maintain it themselves.

True, on the other hand some of these projects can't... Because they are based on complicated infrastructure... Google Code search for example...
Anyways, we have seen Google open source etherpad, when they closed that service...

I also hate it when a service I use is closed (Google Reader for example), but at the end of the I respect Google for innovating and trying out different things, and that includes admitting that something was only a partial success, or not a success at all..

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

Zorpheus (857617) | about a year and a half ago | (#43253013)

Or maybe charge people for these services?

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250855)

They're free to stop it at any point, true, and it's they're decision, true but the thing is, they yank stuff out of under their user's feet without little to warning and totally arbitrarily.

Use the core services, Search, Gmail Maps and maybe Drive, all you want, but for the rest, tread lightly, because they could be pulled tomorrow. Even terminating Google Translate, which is super useful, wouldn't surprise me at this point.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251079)

There, Their, They're

Three different words with three different meanings.

Go get yourself some that THERE edgeumikation...

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251951)

There's only one 'e' in edgumakation, moron! :-)

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (2)

mungtor (306258) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250969)

What responsibility does Google have to spend time and money on infrastructure on products that are used by the minority of people?

Google's time and money is what it probably comes down to. Somewhere deep in the accounting department they figure out that the quality of data they are mining is not enough to offset the actual cost of running the service. It's true that a larger user base would create a larger data set and therefore be more likely to be profitable for them, but if it's just a different representation of the same data there really isn't any point. They can figure out what we're interested in from Search, what we actually buy from the email receipts in our Gmail boxes, etc. A new service like Keep might give them new information, but if not there's no reason to continue it.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250985)

Why did people get angry about New Coke? They didn't have to purchase the product.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251817)

Why did people get angry about New Coke? They didn't have to purchase the product.

Because for a while, original / classic Coke, was not available and replaced by the perceived inferior product.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (3, Insightful)

SirGarlon (845873) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251007)

But like, no one had to pay for these services.

It's not about licensing cost, it's about migration cost.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

sribe (304414) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251045)

What responsibility does Google have to spend time and money on infrastructure on products that are used by the minority of people?

None whatsoever. Entering into such a deal, where the other party obviously has no obligation to you, is a bad idea--and that's largely the point here, even if obscured by the clever attempts at humor ;-)

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (4, Insightful)

grahamtriggs (572707) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251063)

Oh, I get the point that we are not entitled to use these products, because we aren't paying for them.

But there are two points, really:

1) Anger is a way of expressing that people do actually care about the services. If they shut them down with nobody saying anything, then they are right. Conversely, if lots of people kick up a fuss, maybe they see that they are wrong (in thinking that people don't use it).

2) And this one is particularly pertinent to things like Google Sync/Exchange ActiveSync. Just because users aren't paying for the services, doesn't mean that they wouldn't. If I had the option to simply upgrade my Google Mail to a paid apps account / simply pay to retain the features that they are cutting from the free account, then maybe I would. I would *certainly* pay for a "Google Apps for Home", which kept Google Reader, EAS (upgraded to work with Outlook 2013), etc.

But they don't offer that option. That I don't pay for these services, isn't my fault in not seeing the value. It is their fault in providing the option.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (3, Insightful)

afgam28 (48611) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251065)

There was no contractual obligation in play. What responsibility does Google have to spend time and money on infrastructure on products that are used by the minority of people?

There's no contractual obligation for users to put on a happy face either. The fact is that it's kinda annoying when a service that you've come to rely on gets shut down.

Google doesn't have a responsibility to provide free services to everyone but it is in their interest to build trust amongst their user base. Otherwise no one is going to invest any time into things like Google Keep.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251111)

I think one realistic reason for the anger is that Google doesn't choose to make these products open source or work with the tech community to migrate to another solution. Instead, they just kill them off. Reader, for example, would have been an easy thing to migrate.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251143)

Funny that you mention google code search. I was doing some open source contract work for a company on a code search project. It was much better than the existing code search sites and better than Google's offering (IMO). Google code came out and the project shut down. Too bad really, since there were some great ideas on the roadmap but we figured Google would improve over time. Competing with Google is difficult and they don't have to worry about meeting payroll.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (5, Interesting)

drcln (98574) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251149)

There was no contractual obligation in play. What responsibility does Google have to spend time and money on infrastructure on products that are used by the minority of people?

It's not hate, its disgust at the stupidity of it all. Google created these ancillary products to draw people into the Googlesphere, and it worked. As someone from Google has said "The lifetime value of a Chrome user is enormous." Google's ancillary projects drew in people and Google prospered.

In the short term, Google can kill the products that are marginally effective in drawing in new eyeballs, but that sound you hear as they cancel projects that drew people in is the sound of people heading for the exits. That smoke is from the burning of bridges.

Google's near sighted cancelation of today's well liked projects is erecting barriers to acceptance of its future offereings. Google's real product is people, and Google is polluting its product stream with disapointed people who are tiring of learning to use a tool only to have it taken away. Not a good long term strategy.

I won't be using Google+, or Google Docs, or or Google Drive, or Keep, or Google's NIK software, or Chrome, and definitely not a Chromebook, since any of these can disapear or be rendered unusable on a whim.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251363)

I won't be using Google+, or Google Docs, or or Google Drive, or Keep, or Google's NIK software, or Chrome, and definitely not a Chromebook, since any of these can disapear or be rendered unusable on a whim.

The last item is most important - unlike most products, the chromebook costs real money. If google throws a switch on their side (in 4 years, or 10 years, or whatever) the chromebook becomes a paperweight. I wonder if when you buy a chromebook if you get some guaranteed period of service?

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

TCPhotography (1245814) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251557)

The solution on the Chromebook end is to install Linux - and as of now they still have a switch on the laptop (under the battery in my Cr-48) that turns off verified boot, allowing users to install any OS they want (that will run on the hardware - Win7, Chrubuntu, and OSX have been shown working in the wild).

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251709)

that's not a real solution though, because if you've been using the chromebook for several years then all of your work and workflow are going to be in the google ecosystem. if they shut that off, then sure you can install linux or whatever, but that's the same thing as getting a new computer. you're stuck at starting from square 1. So the problem of losing your computer still exists, with the benefit of computer recycling / lower up-front costs for a new computer.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

rts008 (812749) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252285)

Doom!.......Catastrophe!.......End of the World!

Sheesh, back up your data already.
It doesn't matter if it's Google, or Sixpak Joe's Data Shack, or any other cloud service here.
If you aren't backing up your stuff, then it all is at risk, and it's your own fault if you lose stuff...no different from a HDD failure in your PC.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

N0Man74 (1620447) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252601)

that's not a real solution though, because if you've been using the chromebook for several years then all of your work and workflow are going to be in the google ecosystem. if they shut that off, then sure you can install linux or whatever, but that's the same thing as getting a new computer. you're stuck at starting from square 1. So the problem of losing your computer still exists, with the benefit of computer recycling / lower up-front costs for a new computer.

Exactly! You should never switch switch to a new OS and ecosystem, because it isn't possible to move and convert data from one system to another!

I've thought about transitioning to a Linux, Mac, or Windows PC, but it was bad enough getting fooled into making the transition from DECB to OS-9 ecosystems on my TRS-80 CoCo 3!

It's just not worth the hassle.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252917)

I sense a note of sarcasm...

seriously, though, I have a stand-alone box (not connected to the internet) in my office running windows XP for a specific application. Neither the application nor the OS will be updated going forward, but I'll be able to run these XP-only processes forever. For chrome, once it's gone, I'm forced to transition. This is a MAJOR difference about chrome that people dont recognize! We talk about not investing in cloud applicaitons, but what about an entire cloud computer!!!

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (3, Interesting)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251211)

What responsibility does Google have to spend time and money on infrastructure on products that are used by the minority of people?

None.
What reason do people have to give personal information to a company that takes no responsibility over it's products?
Remember; your time and information is only free if it's worthless. You ARE paying Google with something valuable, just not currency.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (3, Insightful)

skids (119237) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251431)

This deserves a car analogy.

Suppose a private individual decides to allow drivers to use some of his privately owned land to take a shortcut to avoid a swamp.

Now suppose there are competing grits delivery companies. Delivery Companes A and B start using the shortcut, and they sell off their SUVs because they no longer have to muck through the swamp. Company C uses the shortcut, but since he cannot trust it to stay there, he holds on to the SUVs. Company C goes out of business because Companies A and B don't need to buy as much gasoline since they do not have SUVs, and they underbid company C for new contracts.

Then the private individual decides he wants to close the shortcut to build a large statue of Natalie Portman.

The business of grits delivery being one with tight margins, Company A and B cannot afford to buy SUVs on such short notice. Company A goes bankrupt trying to finance SUVs, and Company B just stops grits delivery to people that live on the other side of the swamp.

Now nobody on the other side of the swamp has any grits at all. Sure they all saved a few pennies on 4AM deliveries of hot grits in the meantime, but it wasn't worth going cold turkey.

The moral of the story is that building something useful but ephemeral, especially if the stability of that thing is unpredictable, destabilizes markets by playing on their inherent vulnerability to human greed and shortsightedness. There may be zero legal obligation to ensure the stability of the service, and your standard disclaimers in the EULA that you can end it at any time may protect you from any sort of legal action, but for a company with a "do no evil" motto, marketing, advertising, and then killing such a product tends to produce consequences far from their stated ideal.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251525)

"What responsibility does Google have to spend time and money on infrastructure on products that are used by the minority of people?"

What about the users who spent time and money relying on those services? Google will lose users over this, as users don't want to spend time and money on a service that may not exist in a few years.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (1)

SirGarlon (845873) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251549)

Since you don't understand the anger, let me, or rather Charles Schulz, draw you a picture [wikia.com] .

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (2)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251677)

people didn't even have a chance to pay for them.
that's the gist, it seems so random from user point of view.

people gave flack to gm for cancelling ev1 too. some people liked it, but gm didn't want to bother with it.

Re:I don't understand all the anger over Google (2)

Junta (36770) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252409)

What people *should* take away from this is that the fad of software as a service carries an extreme risk. Sure, for things highly contingent upon networking effects (e.g. mail), SaS doesn't really change the dynamic. However, for things like RSS reading, document editing, photo editing, and so on and so fourth, with all other things being equal, it's better to pick the offline capable model where you still have capability no matter what the vendor decides to do or if the vendor fails completely.

thanks but no thanks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250723)

I'll stick to Evernote thankyouverymuch

in other words (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250773)

Some guy averages 39 numbers and makes a bar-graph. News at 11:00.

Re:in other words (1)

mark-t (151149) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251105)

Indeed.

I was reminded of a scene that I saw I don't remember how long ago now, I think it was a Dilbert comic, or something similar... where there was some guy's presentation that was totally boring everybody, until he mentions that he has a graph, and then when pulls out a large form cardstock sheet with a colored pie graph and bar chart from his folder and puts it on the easel where he is doing his presentation, he suddenly has the undivided attention of everyone in the room, as they say "oooooooooh" in unison, evidently being completely wowed by the novelty of it.

I wish I could remember where I saw that though... it might have even been a cartoon or comedy on TV.

Anyways... when I saw the words "summarized in a table and a bar graph", it made me think of that.

Do no Evil? Right... (1, Troll)

pubwvj (1045960) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250787)

I don't trust cloud apps and the like. Google is a prime example of why we should not use these.

Re:Do no Evil? Right... (2)

Nemyst (1383049) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250949)

Wait, discontinuing cloud apps is now evil? Damn, I knew English was a "living language", but I hadn't quite caught on about this one.

cloud future (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251297)

everything is on track to becoming a cloud app. If there is a foreseeable end, we can't it over the horizon yet.

4 years conditional on being terminated (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250839)

It's not really fair to condition on having been terminated before now.

It would make more sense to calculate the median length over all projects, including ones still running (or say projects started more than 6 years ago).

That's the downside of using the Internet like (3, Interesting)

Burz (138833) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250883)

....a set of mainframe services. Re-brand it as 'cloud' all you want-- Over the long term, its not the best fit.

Its better to have locally-running apps that give you a choice of data storage points (especially local and private VPN).

Re:That's the downside of using the Internet like (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251749)

Amen. For a lot of these things, the only benefit of being online is offsite backup. Desktop applications should be written to perform offsite backup conveniently, with minimal fuss to the user. The ability to switch offsite backup providers should be user-friendly also.

The other benefit of being online is a bit more tricky though. That's the "share it with others at a stable URL" function . Traditionally you had to get a domain, etc; blah, blah. That cost money. Now there are many companies providing the "share it with others" function for free; but they ask for advertising and data-mining in return. The "stable URL" aspect is what makes this a difficult problem. If your offsite backup goes down, you can solve that problem by copying onsite files to a new provider. You can't copy the URL. URNs are supposed to solve this problem; but nobody is really using them. A virtually no-cost stable URL that redirected to URNs hosted on potentially unstable locations solves this problem...

Anyway, there are alot of companies in Si Valley that should be 10-page RFCs, not $10 billion companies. Sooner or later, the unwashed masses might figure that out, if the marketing department doesn't continue to succeed in drowning out intelligence.

Seriously, nothing to see here. (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250945)

The mean lifespan of the doomed products turns out to be almost exactly 4 years

And that's just it: The MEAN.

If you look at the graph, there is a slight flat spot there, but really, over all, it's a pretty constent slope all the way up.

Seriously, nothing to see here.

downside of SaaS (5, Interesting)

crgrace (220738) | about a year and a half ago | (#43250951)

This really is a big negative of Software as a Service. When you own something, you can run it forever, even if the developer decides to stop using it.

I have some simulation software for electrical design that was last updated in 1998. Still works fine and gets the job done. If it were on the cloud I'd be out of luck and forced to continually move my data between paid services. Too bad.

Fucked by a cloud (2)

HalAtWork (926717) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251739)

Exactly, look how many companies still run some DOS program in a CMD box on Windows. They're doing so because it's more worth it to them than to develop some new solution. The solution they already had still works. If it were cloud-based then they'd be stuck paying bills that they really don't need to. The cloud is always going to fuck over the people who depend on it.

Re:downside of SaaS (1)

SpaceCadetTrav (641261) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251805)

When you own something, you can run it forever, even if the developer decides to stop using it.

In theory, yes you can keep using unsupported software. The reality is that most companies would ultimately be better off if they were forced to drop it sooner rather than later. It hurts to rip off that bandaid, but it's usually worth it.

Re:downside of SaaS (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43252167)

Why?

We in softwareland like to think that. However, in businessland they see it as a sunk fixed cost (not a recurring fee that comes out of a different budget). It works dont mess with it. What is the cost of just putting it into a VM vs hiring another firm to re-write the custom app (again)? Or worse a recurring monthly cost that someone has to cut a check for every month (and they cut you off if you dont pay on time and idle 10 workers). Oh... you dont have those numbers, just a feel good 'band-aid' analogy. Sure it is a pain for you. But guess what? You got hired for it... You can not answer the questions with 'it costs X to keep maintaining it' vs 'it costs Y to rewrite/cloud it' you will get slaughtered in a proposal meeting. Rightfully so too.

Sometimes it is better/cheaper just to keep using the sunk cost item. Sure its old, creaky, ugly, and a pain to use. But it gets the job done. Sometimes it is better to toss it out. Until you analyze it you can not say 'most companies would ultimately be better off'.

Sorry to be harsh but in businessland they talk money. Not feel good 'its better trust me'. That is for the sales guys.

The Guardian's forecasting methodology (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250961)

doesn't require a Ph.D in mathematics, statistics, or computer science to understand, but may be at least as accurate as many of the projections presented in Mountain View conference rooms.

If you aren't paying for the service... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43250981)

If you aren't the one paying for the service then you are not the customer - you are the product.

Re:If you aren't paying for the service... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251559)

I don't pay your mom. Burn!!!

Self-fulfilling prophecy, anyone? (0)

OneAhead (1495535) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251031)

(n/t)

And this is listed as funny? (1)

BabaChazz (917957) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251069)

Why?

In all seriousness, despite the weakness of the statistics (33 points does not make a universe, particularly with such widely scattered data), this is simply a codification of the reluctance many feel about trusting vital data to Google. It's interesting to note how many projects Google has shuttered, and the lengths of time they were live. I do appreciate the fact that the author has provided his raw data so that we can draw our own conclusions.

Re:And this is listed as funny? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251127)

To get more data points, we need to wait x more years for Google to kill x more products.

companies discontinue software (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251107)

APPLE:
Shake
Color
LiveType
Cinema Tools
Soundtrack Pro
DVD Studio Pro
Final Cut Server
MICROSOFT:
Microsoft Plus!
Microsoft Money
Microsoft Music Central
Microsoft FrontPage
Microsoft Works
Creative Writer
LAN Manager....and so on.

Re:companies discontinue software (4, Insightful)

BLToday (1777712) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251197)

You can still keep using the old software and your data. In Google's case, once the service is gone so is your data. Think of it this way, Honda discontinues the RSX they don't go and blow up all the RSX they've sold. The time, data and energy you put into an online service is your investment and when it's discontinued you lose that investment.

Re:companies discontinue software (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251697)

you could still use frontpage to create sites.. if you wanted. you can still use your works package from 2001. there's no mandatory activation, no shit like that. you could even use them on your windows 8 installation.

(not so with older apple sw though, you'd need to have an old apple too).

Google abbreviated (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251157)

Don't be evil to just d'evil

Except Your Data Will Still Be Safe... (2)

dr4g0nnn (2873537) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251185)

Keep uses Google Drive, so your data isn't going anywhere.

Re:Except Your Data Will Still Be Safe... (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251703)

well technically drive would be shut down a while before it, on average.

I predict a re-branding of it within 5 years anyways.

Re:Except Your Data Will Still Be Safe... (1)

interion (1139257) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251865)

Keep uses Google Drive, so your data isn't going anywhere.

When Google Notebook shutdown in 2011, all of the data was automatically exported to Google Docs, which was later replaced by Google Drive in 2012. So now all of my notes are stored in Google Drive, but that isn't doing me any good because Keep wont read them. If Keep eventually shuts down, sure the data might survive, but will anything be able to use it?

Re:Except Your Data Will Still Be Safe... (1)

IANAAC (692242) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252295)

So now all of my notes are stored in Google Drive, but that isn't doing me any good because Keep wont read them. If Keep eventually shuts down, sure the data might survive, but will anything be able to use it?

Does search in GDrive not work for you? If it's searchable (and already stored in GDrive), your data is still usable.

For me, search within GDrive is the main reason to use it (well, and archival). It's faster than my desktop search.

It happens (1)

stewsters (1406737) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251217)

It sucks to have a service you use canceled, but if any of those cancelled services were being done by independent people rather than Google, they would have gone bankrupt from making no profit before those 4 years were up. Google just got your hopes up and kept them up longer than others.

Therefore, if you want Google Keep to survive... (1)

Joshua Fan (1733100) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251231)

use it. The more people who do, the better its chances.

One thing after another (1)

Carnivore24 (467239) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251243)

I hope they don't cancel Google Search. I use that hidden gem all the time! This is getting crazy!!

iGoogle (1)

Frontier Owner (2616587) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251251)

I must not use google services enough. I use their mail, calendars and iGoogle. I really like igoogle because in a glance, I see the headlines, here, drudge, and various news sources, also see how my stocks have moved.Sure most of that can be replaced with windows gadgets, but with igoogle, Its accessible from anywhere I log in. My computer, my phone, my tablet.

iGoogle (1)

GigG (887839) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251327)

The started having a banner that iGoogle was going to be turned on in November of 2013 in mid 2011. There is no reason to think they would shut down something like Google Keep without at least that much warning.

Keep Sticky Notes? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43251475)

Four years? I may keep sticky notes for about four hours. Sometimes four minutes.

The data I put here will have a very short relevance. I may love the app in 2017 (TBD), but I won't miss my 2013 sticky notes. If there are people out there hoarding their sticky colored squares, I'd hate to see their desks, or refrigerators.

Although this app uses Google's cloudy back-end, its more for device sync and uniform presentation across services (aka screens) than a personal (eternal) archive. There are better options for data you care about, and I don't mean Evernote.

P.S. I won't be an anonymous coward for long :)

Are they Trending this? (2)

interval1066 (668936) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251599)

I wonder why google trends [google.com] isn't predicting the end of these various Google services?

Struck a Nerve (5, Insightful)

Grizzley9 (1407005) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251753)

Google seems to have reached the tipping point when they cancelled Reader. Now, their main base of loyal geeks are starting to question them, in print no less. This is not a good sign for Google. They are taking a much larger PR hit than just losing some respect from a few Reader users. Granted many of those services likely did need to be cut, or not even started, but it seems they've now pushed enough to where geeks are starting to push back and relaying that mistrust to their non-geek friends.

Re:Struck a Nerve (1)

snadrus (930168) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252357)

Breaking-down the obvious:
- Laymen could get Reader's benefit
- Geeks saw a product that only told Google that some RSS source interested them.
- Those geeks like Google's open-source policy & assumed to unprofitable would become open-sourced.
- Reader wasn't open-source, tarnishing this image.
- A simple open-source promise could save them a lot of hassle.

Unless perhaps Google wants to give free cloud services a black-eye?
It certainly made me consider installing my own jsPerf instance.

Re:Struck a Nerve (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43252595)

Charles Arthur is a flaming apple fanboy though. Any chance he gets (rightly or wrongly) he has a go at them.

Re:Struck a Nerve (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43253323)

I only started using Reader in anger because Google recommended it as the fallback for the soon to be defunct iGoogle.

On the plus side... (2)

Mr. White (22990) | about a year and a half ago | (#43251777)

Google+ launched on June 28, 2011.

They will stop trying to shove it down our throats on estimated June 28, 2015.

We are half way there.

Re:On the plus side... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43252147)

Pun intended?

Irony (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43252153)

I predict there will be jokes about the ironically named "Keep" in 4 years time.

no correlation. (1)

wisnoskij (1206448) | about a year and a half ago | (#43252487)

The graph clearly shows that there is no correlation to 4 years. it shows a wide, fairly even, range. Where a few months is as likely as 10 years.

4 years is the average, nothing more.

Google is doing us a service (2)

xs650 (741277) | about a year and a half ago | (#43253393)

Google is doing us a service by reminding us that online services, data storage, etc come and go. Don't rely on any one company if a service or your data is important to you.

Reality bites and it's good to have an occasional nip like this latest one from Google to remind us of that.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?