Google, oh Google, what would we ever do without you?
One may suppose that this question is addressed to the Google founders: Sergey Brin and Larry Page. While one question is fairly rhetoric, the other has a genuine sense of foreboding attached to it.
Larry Page has lost his voice. Don’t fret, people. According to the various sources at Google, he still continues to lead the company. Now, whether this condition of his is serious or not is unclear. He missed Google’s annual meeting and is going to miss two further engagements.
While Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google, is making light about Mr. Page’s illness, there are few in the Silicon Valley who seem to think anything about this matter is funny. The reason, you ask? The demise of Apple CEO, Steve Jobs is fresh in their minds for the reason that very little information was disclosed by Apple about his condition. We wish Mr. Page a speedy recovery and hope that his voice is heard again soon.
Let’s get to the rhetoric bit now. Two words: Google Glass.
It is an augmented reality head-mounted display. It is a hands free display of information that is currently available to all smartphone users and it allows for interaction, via natural language voice commands. Project Glass is under development at Google X Labs, which has worked on other futuristic technologies such as the “Self-driving car”.
Though not a new idea, the very good thing about this product from Google is that it is smaller and slimmer than previous head-mounted displays. Future designs may allow integration of the display into people’s normal eyewear.
Sergey Brin, the showman that he is, decided that the best way to unveil the wearable computing device to the world was by showcasing a live sky-dive by an employee sporting the device. Everyone at Google seems to be pretty excited about the potential of Glass. It isn’t expected to be on sale soon, but when it does, it may soon take the world by storm.
On the other, lighter side of things, Gmail has finally overtaken Hotmail in terms of number of active users. This was long coming and inevitable.
Interestingly, according to ComScore, as far as home and business use of email services is concerned, Hotmail remains at the top with 325 million unique visitors and Yahoo follows with 298 million and Gmail comes third with 298 million. The ComScore numbers do not take into account, smartphone and Internet café users, which cause a discrepancy. And it is this discrepancy that makes Gmail the #1 email client in the world. Good times these, for Google, it seems.
Lastly, Google Maps now goes in-door in the UK. This means that once you are inside the location, you can use Google Maps to find what you are looking for, like in a museum for example, you may find where a certain display is put up. Pretty darn amazing, we say.
While the overall trend suggests that the dominating style of running your company is now passé, and that cooperation and integration is the new ‘in’ thing, looking at how Google is going, one could really say that they still look to dominate our very lives with their revolutionary ideas.