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So whats google up to?
Old 12-22-2005, 12:22 PM   #1
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So whats google up to?

I watched a story a little while back on googles proposed second stock offering, where the newsfolk were scratching their heads wondering what google will do with all their money from the ipo and the second offering...i think its 7 billion or something like that?

Maybe I'm just too quick to connect the dots, but I see google putting out metropolitan wireless internet access for free, a large scale email system that has plugins to allow you to store files on it, and discussions of google offering web based applications for word processing, budgeting and so forth.

So whats the leap from that to google becoming essentially the broadcast television of the internet? Offer everyone free wireless access, email, applications and web search. The catch being you have to watch advertisements, either generic or targetted, the entire time, just like broadcast tv? Optionally offer a premium service where you pay extra for additional goodies and/or a little less or no advertising?

Basically cut almost every non-content provider out of the system. You wouldnt need much hardware at home except for an access appliance with a screen, keyboard and network connection. You wouldnt need operating systems, applications software, and all the service and support required.

The folks who make high powered and/or high density servers and networking hardware would benefit. It would all but kill microsoft, intel and the rest of that ilk.

Is it feasible?
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 12-22-2005, 01:37 PM   #2
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Re: So whats google up to?

Google has tons of projects and lots of plans, but I'm not sure how they can keep making money with it. I've heard lots of speculation, and they have the money and power to pull a lot of it off. MS is on shaky ground, but then again so is Google. That's the thing with IT services these days: it's too easy to copy what someone else is offering and compete with them.

I'm not sure why you think Intel would hurt. IBM and Sun are more likely to win out in a high density market shift, but Dell or more likely HP could whip up some Intel-based stuff pretty quick. (Ah, I see...Intel and Dell live on volume, and this would kill volume after the initial ramp-up.)

I still don't forsee network appliances being big in the near future, though. For whatever reason, people want a fully functional PC/laptop. I certainly can imagine a situation where network appliances win the day, but that should have happened already and didn't. Maybe it will happen when production technology evolves to flexible displays with embedded wireless feeds: a permanent media magazine/newspaper/web browser. (We're getting closer, by the way.)
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 12-22-2005, 05:21 PM   #3
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Re: So whats google up to?

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Is it feasible?
Where do we sign the NDA, and what's our cut of the profits?
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 12-22-2005, 05:26 PM   #4
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Re: So whats google up to?

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So whats the leap from that to google becoming essentially the broadcast television of the internet?*
Content. The delivery medium will be / is a commodity. It is the content that people pay for.
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 12-22-2005, 05:31 PM   #5
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Re: So whats google up to?

The advertising was where I was going with it. The tv folks manage to put up a lot of shows based on untargeted advertising to an unknown audience. Last time I saw the #'s, people were spending more time online than watching tv. You give them the access and apps for free, paste them with targetted ads they can respond to, and charge through the wazoo for the advertising and feedback.

Its bad for intel, dell and so forth, because I dont need much of a computer at home (the old thin client brouhaha) and I dont really need to change it unless it breaks.

There arent a lot of apps that demand more...digital video manipulation, 3d fps games...a few other items. I think many people might get by nicely on an appliance hooked to a set of services. Not businesses, but home users.
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 12-22-2005, 08:41 PM   #6
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Re: So whats google up to?

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I think many people might get by nicely on an appliance hooked to a set of services. Not businesses, but home users.
Questions I've been asking myself for a while include why have people not already latched onto PC appliances? Several have been offered, and they've pretty much flopped. It makes perfect sense for me for a majority of PC users to get the same bang for less buck with an appliance, but it hasn't happend. I agree it makes perfect sense, but it ain't happenin' so far.

And I would expect business to benefit sooner from a thin client perspective previded they either have the bandwidth or push app servers closer to the user. My company flopped this idea when they decided to farm all the app servers at HQ. It would've worked with the original plan for distributed servers. Ah well.

But if someone can provide me the answer as to why this (thin client / appliance computing) will succeed in the future when it hasn't already I would appreciate it.
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 12-23-2005, 08:51 AM   #7
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Re: So whats google up to?

Absolutely true, appliances havent caught on at home or at work so far.

The work piece is easy: the only dangled benefit was cost savings and after running a bazillion studies and trying it myself in a fortune 500 company, it actually ended up costing more in direct costs while eliminating some indirect and hard to measure costs. IT just isnt very good at providing customized, personalized "experiences" to the end user. Its why PC's happened in the first place. The thin client model in business is really no different from a 3270 terminal hanging off a mainframe or a vt100 off a VAX. A system outage affects many and nearly entirely, performance suffers at peak usage times, a customer has no way to implement custom apps or customize extensively what they have, and its not particularly mobile or portable. That and theres a dirty little secret companies discover once they're up to their noses in a thin client implementation. PC operating systems and applications dont work well when you scale them to 500 or 1000 users sitting on the same box. Sure some that have been at it a while work ok, but you're entering a strange new and undiscovered world of putting specific pressures on products that is very different from the mainstream. <insert line about being able to tell pioneers by the arrows in their backs>. Then you decide to stop using large scale systems for blades and/or small server 'farms' and discover that it costs you more to manage and update all those machines than you're saving in hardware costs. If that doesnt finish you off, the rashes of user complaints your help desk has to handle will.

But theres a persistence to this that has an interesting root: most of your top echelon IT managers at one time or another may have run the mainframe or minicomputer shop at the company, and they feel very comfortable with the "big box" and/or "having control" of the enterprise.

Granted there are some 'big box' or 'blade' shops that will sell you a package of hardware and software that they've done some testing on and gotten to work. Just look at the prices. Then try to change anything yourself.

The home piece...welllll...a few appliances came out. Webtv (sucked because using the web on a tv sucks). Various MSN appliances (overpriced, small screen, no concerted applications packages in league with Word and Excel, small keyboard, no local storage, no organized online storage). Audrey (mostly the same problems as the MSN appliances).

Remember that most of these came out with four to six hundred dollar price tags at a time when a basic pc cost about the same, they usually tied you to an expensive ISP that didnt offer much in the way of services, etc. Nobody's tried one lately, although this prospective google thing wouldnt require one, once it caught on, perhaps people might find that their next PC might not be a PC at all.

How about $99 for the box or use your own PC, free internet access, free apps, free storage, some premium services for high end apps, local storage, more online storage, and you have to live with ads and answer a few questionaire/surveys now and then?
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 12-23-2005, 12:09 PM   #8
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Re: So whats google up to?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ()
a 3270 terminal hanging off a mainframe or a vt100 off a VAX
Boy, I really miss the good ol' days. NOT.

I wonder if my Sony LCD monitor has a VT100 emulation...
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 12-23-2005, 05:46 PM   #9
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Re: So whats google up to?

Quote from: () on Today at 08:51:38 AM
a 3270 terminal hanging off a mainframe or a vt100 off a VAX

That 3270 and mainframe paid for my retirement - I will remember it fondly. They also had the good sense to retire 3 months after I did.
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 12-24-2005, 09:31 AM   #10
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Re: So whats google up to?

I had my hand in them too. When I first moved into middle management at the job that paid me to ER, I took on all the crap that nobody wanted to "own". Sr. Management saw this as a big positive and I moved up a lot faster than people who grabbed all the cool and trendy stuff. I think at one point I had all of the legacy networking crap, all the old network operating systems, pc desktop hardware, terminal emulation, the mainframe operations in their entirety, and corporate email.

Talk about a bunch of thankless jobs rolled into one...
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 01-03-2006, 09:43 PM   #11
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Re: So whats google up to?

Hmmmmm....the plot thickens...
http://media.guardian.co.uk/site/sto...html?gusrc=rss

Speculation is mounting that Google will this week unveil a no-frills personal computer costing as little as $200

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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 01-04-2006, 04:33 PM   #12
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Re: So whats google up to?

Rumor has it walmart will sell it.

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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 01-05-2006, 01:04 PM   #13
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Re: So whats google up to?

Yep.

Google's PR dude made an attempt to deny it, but if I read my spin correctly he said it wouldnt be a google made unit, but may be a google branded unit made by a hardware partner and sold with both names.
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 01-06-2006, 06:32 PM   #14
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Re: So whats google up to?

I'd still rather have my own computer...
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Re: So whats google up to?
Old 01-07-2006, 08:18 AM   #15
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Re: So whats google up to?

Me too, but a lot of people would rather not have the bother.

Here's your software bundle for the machine
http://pack.google.com/

I thought it'd be a great download for anyone needing some of the basics (like free virus and a better browser) but it looks like symantec stupid'ed out and removed the really useful features from this 'special version' of the browser, like anti-worm, anti-spyware and so forth.

Great idea Symantec...people will try this, get hit with a worm or a piece of spyware and jump to the conclusion that your product sucks by the time the six month free trial expires. But hey, five of the people installing the product decided at install time to pony up $30 for the full banana, and that makes up for it.
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