May 18, 2007

google as cold war reagan

I like the Cringely analogy.

Universal Search is Google's attempt to destroy its major competitors who, like Gorbachev in the waning years of the USSR, have to follow suit and start spending money they don't have if they want to even appear to still be in competition with Google. This means for these companies more software development, more sweeps of the web, as well as the greater likelihood that among their top results will be pages located at Google properties like YouTube.

Oh, and this is spot on as well.

There is nothing Google would like better than for Microsoft to buy Yahoo, simply because the assimilation of an acquisition that big would paralyze both companies for months as they struggled to get to know, then to get along with each other as Google surges forward.

Sort of related, I was clicking through the Google common navigation last night just to see how it behaved and noticed a few things, so I took some screenshots.  Imagine that little bar at the top of your browser, and that you just clicked and clicked and clicked your way through. Here's what you would see, starting at

Of note:

  • The switch from search mode to productivity mode when you hit Gmail.
  • The inconsistent use of Mail v. Gmail (I'm sure they'll get this figured out)
  • What ends up under the "more" link is also interesting, but I was too lazy to screenshot that.  Basically, there's a bunch of context switching going on there between search mode and productivity mode.

It will be interesting to see how this top nav evolves as they roll out more of "Universal Search."  Carrying on the Cold War metaphor:  Eric Schmidt is to Ronald Reagan as Marissa Mayer is to ________.