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HindustanTimes Thu,24 Jul 2014
Google overload badly needs a fix
N Madhavan, Hindustan Times
May 19, 2013
First Published: 23:42 IST(19/5/2013)
Last Updated: 23:46 IST(19/5/2013)

I confess I am confused. What exactly is Google supposed to do?

Amid and after its roaring developers conference last week, the search engine giant was in the news for various things.

It was in the news for Google Glass, its futuristic wearable computer that is giving the creeps to privacy lovers.

It was in the news for launching All Access, an online music service that challenges leaders like Pandora and Spotify.

It was in trouble with UK tax authorities on whether or not it actually sold its products or not.

It just launched its Nexus 4 Android phone in partnership with LG in India.

This is all in a week’s work. And look again, the word search occurs in the above only in a description of the company.

Only a few weeks ago, Google was in the news in India on its attempts to map out cities, where it seems to be triggering alarm bells on how far it can go.

All this is happening just after the release of The New Digital Age by Google’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen, director of Google Ideas. The book, which I am yet to read, outlines the company’s vision on how to change people, nations and business. In short, the world.

About seven years ago, there were jokes about Google being God (or the Devil, depending on who you were) and there is serious humour about this at sites like www.thechurchofgoogle.org that lists nine reasons Google is God, more or less.

Jokes apart, this only shows the awesome might of the extent to which it is blessing the world and/or stepping on toes while touching nearly everything.

We might do well to appoint full-time Google Editors at media companies, or look for a department of Google in governments soon.

Where is all this leading to? Search me, er, Google!


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