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Google's Patents Reveal Strategy To Beat Microsoft 453

linumax writes "According to 'The Google Legacy,' history is about to repeat itself. From the article: 'Microsoft today is where IBM was years ago. And Google is in a position to do to Bill Gates what he did to IBM. The result could be a new industry kingpin. Arnold, author of The Google Legacy, said in an interview this week that it appears that Microsoft doesn't understand Google in much the same way that IBM didn't understand Microsoft 20 years ago. "It will be the Googleplex from 2004 to 2020 - a network paradigm," said Arnold. "It will be enabled by Google's approach to innovation."'"
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Google's Patents Reveal Strategy To Beat Microsoft

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  • and then... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Rui Lopes ( 599077 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @08:44AM (#13692694) Homepage
    in 2020, everyone in /. will be bashing google. History will repeat itself.
    • Re:and then... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Barryke ( 772876 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @08:54AM (#13692725) Homepage
      Indeed, we will bash Google in the (be it near or far) future. I'm perfectly convenient using their 'tools', but when i think of what their future innovations will mean to my privacy it scares me.
      • Re:and then... (Score:4, Insightful)

        by kubevubin ( 906716 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:00AM (#13692747) Homepage
        Are you referring to the "privacy" that is already being gradually eaten away at (thanks to the government), anyway? At least Google is a little more upfront about it, and their invasion of our privacy isn't in the same way that the government (and God only knows who else) is attempting to invade our privacy. Google is supported by advertising, and I really don't mind the way that they're going about creating a more personalized brand of advertising. It's not as though they're using any of the information that they're collecting to persecute anyone.
        • by BewireNomali ( 618969 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:25AM (#13692840)
          You're a subpoena away from persecution in a Googleplex world, buddy.
          • by shokk ( 187512 )
            The President Google 3000-node cluster does not appreciate your comments. Your bank accounts and information have been erased, and a SWAT team will be sent to your door to collect your lifeless body. Have a nice day, and don't forget to click on some AdSense ads before we kill you.
        • At least Google is a little more upfront about it, and their invasion of our privacy isn't in the same way that the government (and God only knows who else) is attempting to invade our privacy.

          Google is about as upfront about it as the government. You know they have a lot of information about you, but they won't tell you what it is. Actually, in that sense the government is in some ways better - you can file a freedom of information act request to find out just what it is the government knows about you

      • Re:and then... (Score:3, Insightful)

        by cortana ( 588495 )
        You're worried about _Google_?

        Do you carry a cellphone? :)
    • by ashwinds ( 743227 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:02AM (#13692752)
      .... only difference is Google will /. /. and bring it down
    • by aurb ( 674003 )
      And Microsoft will be in the same position as IBM is today... I mean will support Linux, be cool, and everything...
    • by LiquidCoooled ( 634315 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:38AM (#13692889) Homepage Journal
      Also, in 2020, everyone on slashdot will still be saying "this is the year for Linux on the desktop".
    • Re:that depends (Score:5, Insightful)

      by symbolic ( 11752 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @11:05AM (#13693263)
      If google manages to become as disgustingly predatory as Microsoft was, then yes, history will probably repeat itself. However, it's possible that Google could shepherd in a new paradigm (actually, an older paradigm that has been reworked), and still maintain a decent set of ethics. I'm not certain that being a scumbag of a company is a requirement for success.
    • Re:and then... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by fermion ( 181285 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @11:56AM (#13693494) Homepage Journal
      Many have been concerned about google for quite some time. They have been quiently and not so quietly consuming the advertised-paid-for search market, thier algorithm is aging and increasingly easy to attack, and many portal products, like froogle, seem to be in a constant beta state, while other products like toolbar seem less like a useful and more like an intrusive ploy.

      What is most worrying is that few seem to be worried about the lack of real compitition. Given google declinng result quality, where is the compitition. Though the results seem to be getting no worse, there must be better ways to do searching. However, with MS pushing thier solution, and Google seeming like the new big thing, I gues no one wants to fund it.

      So just like 15 and 20 years ago when many of us were saying that MS was good for some things, not everything, and the market should encourage options, history is now repeating itself when we will give up diversity for some immidiate percieved simplicity.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 01, 2005 @08:45AM (#13692698)
    That's OK. According to Baldy, Google will not be around long enough to enjoy it. i'll+kill+google%22&btnG=Google+Search []
  • Not really accurate (Score:5, Interesting)

    by arkham6 ( 24514 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @08:46AM (#13692704)
    Comparing MS and IBM is flawed imo. IBM was the big company before the rise of personal computers that felt it was unstoppable in its world, and did not have the foresight to see that personal computing would someday overtake server style computing. They truely thought that only big corporations would need computers.

    MS on the other hand is aware, paranoid actualy that they will be dethroned. While their leaders may act out in stupid and juvinile ways (throwing chairs anyone?), they are aware of the problem and will fight tooth and nail to keep from being dethroned.
    • by ty_kramer ( 262524 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:19AM (#13692818)
      Microsoft's paranoia will not be enough.

      Their intractable problem is that they're chained to their Windows/Office franchise. Every new technology they consider must first be 100% guaranteed not to harm Windows and Office. It's a rear-guard action, one that will absolutely cause them to fail in the next five to ten years, assuming the network will eventually trump the desktop. In a world of fast wireless everywhere, it has to. And that world will be here within the decade.

      The beauty of it (and horror, if you're Gates) is that a public corporation really has no choice but to protect its cash cows. If Bill were as smart as he thinks he is, he'd have split his company up a few years ago. Heck, he could have used the antitrust trial as cover and whined publicly while getting his company reshaped in a way where it could compete in a network-everywhere world. Maybe split into Windows, Office, and MSN companies, all free to compete the heck out of each other. Sure the stock would have taken a hit at first. But right now, the Office company would be selling bunches of Linux Office licenses. The Windows company would be coming out with a lean, mean Linux-based Windows. The MSN company would be neck and neck with Google in terms of web-based applications. And the combined stock prices of the three companies would be smoking the currect MSFT price. Gates would be so much richer than he is now, it would be astounding.

      But Bill is shackled to Windows/Office. And he's not brave enough to radically remake his company in a form that can compete in the 21st century. And if he were, he'd probably face 1000 shareholder lawsuits when the stock price initially plummets.

      Game over, it's just a matter of watching it unfold.
      • You nailed it (Score:3, Informative)

        by lheal ( 86013 )
        I hope you get modded up. I would add that Microsoft is a top-down company, a cult of Gates and gold. The troops really believe in the vision of Windows and Office everywhere, and the culture refuses to accept anything else.

        Free software will kick their assets.
      • by rtb61 ( 674572 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @10:20AM (#13693044) Homepage
        It is already to late for any changes to microsoft to have any great significance in it's future. They are confused, disorganised and trying to go in too many directions at once. They are attempting to defeat four adversaries at the same time, IBM in service, google in search, open source in core software programs and sony in game consoles (the future lounge computer). All that has really happened is the management of microsoft started to believe their own publicity (industry geniuses) rather than reality (lucking out, being marketing trolls and abusing a monopoly).

        Microsoft have a history of copying every one else and never really originating anything. This means always playing catch up and this was fine where the could abuse their IBM and Intel provided OS monopoly to cripple a competitor but when it came to search and the internet it wasn't possible even with internet explorer and it's pre-configured favoratism to msn search (of course it is too late to block access from internet explorer to google). The big thing was MSN search did basically suck, it had such a bias to paid advertisers in front of user experience that it was basically useless and drove people to google (no different to the others that threw away their market leadership yahoo ,alta vista, ask jeevs, infoseek i.e. greed driven stupidity)

        Why the jounalists continue to ignore the impact of "do no evil" and the basic underlying respect for the end user in preventing greed from killing a business in the highly competitive internet search enviroment I do not know (perhaps it doesn't sound good or sell marketing product or promote profits over customer experience). Google had no free ride, they competed for users by providing a better more reliable search experience and won. They are just expanding the services whilst adhering to the principles that made succesfull in the first place.

      • by bmajik ( 96670 ) <> on Saturday October 01, 2005 @10:23AM (#13693059) Homepage Journal
        Why do you suppose a Linux Office would do well ?

        - 1) the facilities available on linux/X windows to make something like office are lacking. It's not an intractible problem, but you've got a lot more richness in the Windows platform that the Office team would need to get from _somewhere_

        but, the much bigger issue is:

        - 2) Nobody is going to pay for Office on Linux. People that run linux on the desktop are not interested in buying anything from Microsoft. They're usually not interested in buying anything at all, software wise.. but certainly not from Microsoft. I don't see Office for Linux driving linux adoption, so i don't see lots of new customers coming to the space either.

        I might entertain the idea that Microsoft would work better split up. But most people that make this argument assume that a split-microsoft will produce Office for Linux. I don't think it will ever happen. To be honest, a large part of the comments on this story are about how google will win with server/web centric apps, etc. How would Microsoft investing heavily to make a thick-client app for a minority player primarily used by a market of people who hate paying for software and hate microsoft more than Stalin, be a good, moneymaking move ?

        It is illustrative to look at the MS products for Macintosh. The availability of Office/Mac has not had some staggering effect on Mac penetration. One reason MS makes mac products is that lots of Mac people are more than willing to buy software.. they already paid too much for their computers, and 95% of stupid utilities for macs have been pay-ware (not as much with OS X inheriting a large unix base and unix attitudes about homebrew development.. but historically speaking), so the Mac user traditionally has been extremely willing to pay for software, thus making it a market worth considering.

        When the # of people willing to pay for Office/Linux, times the selling price (call it $199 (ha ha)) is larger than the cost to develop it, Microsoft will make Office for Linux. I don't see that ever happening.

        • Companies buy MS Office licenses. Probably the vast majority of MS Office licenses. And that's not likely to change just to facilitate a switch to Linux desktops. But it's also not likely to change just because some of their users are running it on Linux instead of Windows (if a Linux version existed). I think that if a company's MS Office site license included both Windows and Linux versions, the resistance to allowing at least some of their users to switch to Linux desktops would be reduced. So, Office fo
      • by IntlHarvester ( 11985 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @10:57AM (#13693229) Journal
        Every now and again you stumble on a Score 5 post which seems to have been routed in from Bizarro World. And you get tidbits of wit-n-wisdom like this:

        + Microsoft's greatest strength (Windows/Office Monopoly) is actually their greatest weakness. No really. They have a direct channel to push technology into stuff that everyone buys and uses, but it will ultimately fail because they can't sell "Ad-Words" or something.

        + Linux is the answer to all Microsoft's problems -- they only way they can handle the current non-factor of the Linux desktop is by coming out with Linux Office and Linux Windows, which wouldn't really improve their situation but Linux is like cool and stuff and isn't that a good enough reason?

        + 10 years from now, Microsoft will be in trouble. They might make two trillion dollars in that period of time, but I will eventually be proven right.

        Ultimately these sorts of posts sprout directly from the melancholy and frustration you see in the Linux Advocacy world as reality has sunk in. Linux has not been competitive in any meaningful sense on the desktop. Microsoft does not have any huge immediate structural problems that would cause them to collapse (as boldly predicted by ESR and others in the late 90s). In other words, there's no real end in sight. At least not one you can count on.

        Ultimately there's not a lot of insight in "Game Over Microsoft ... eventually". Eventually this will be true, the world will change, corporations rise and fall. But that doesn't change the current situation one iota.
        • Nice retort, but I must say it is rather cruel to shove this whole 'reality' thing into people's faces, especially on a site like this one. They might even discover there's more to life than the licensing scheme of their chosen operating system!
        • by po8 ( 187055 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @02:21PM (#13694118)

          Point by point:

          • Microsoft's greatest strength (Windows/Office Monopoly) is actually their greatest weakness. No really. They have a direct channel to push technology into stuff that everyone buys and uses, but it will ultimately fail because they can't sell "Ad-Words" or something.

            It is starting to fail now, but for a different reason. Governments don't like businesses to control them. In particular, governments don't like foreign businesses to control them. Every time Microsoft tries to use its channel these days, they're hit with sanctions of various kinds. Every time they try to extend their reach into a new market, they're slapped down in various ways. In the not-very-long run, this is a problem for them. How happy do you think Microsoft is about what's going on in China? Europe? Massachusetts?

          • Linux is the answer to all Microsoft's problems -- they only way they can handle the current non-factor of the Linux desktop is by coming out with Linux Office and Linux Windows, which wouldn't really improve their situation but Linux is like cool and stuff and isn't that a good enough reason?

            A relatively easy and inexpensive way for Microsoft to confuse the issue on open formats for data storage and interchange would be to release its office suite for Linux. An incredibly difficult and expensive way to hinder open source in cannibalizing the applications market would be to provide a proprietary module for Linux that permitted running all Windows apps properly. I don't see large benefits to the Linux community from either approach. The office suite has already been re-commoditized by open source. Ditto for the browser. Nothing Microsoft will do in either space can undo that. Microsoft has a reasonable amount to gain from getting their products onto open platforms, and the open source community has little, as near as I can tell. Whether they embrace Linux or fight it, though, they have a genuine problem in the application space.

          • 10 years from now, Microsoft will be in trouble. They might make two trillion dollars in that period of time, but I will eventually be proven right.

            Sometimes changes happen quickly in the computer business. Sometimes they are very slow. When you have more than $80B in the bank, bet on slow. That said, Microsoft is fighting a three-front battle right now, and on every front it's against their own customers or potential customers. The open source folks want to ignore them, at best. Governments want to neutralize them. Google wants to eat their lunch. Any one of these three are a formidable adversary. I think you'll be surprised how much decline you will see in a short time if Microsoft doesn't find a way to quickly and effectively cope with at least one of these three threats.

      • by east coast ( 590680 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @11:25AM (#13693356)
        one that will absolutely cause them to fail in the next five to ten years

        I've been hearing this very mantra out of the Linux/open source community for years. Microsoft is still as strong as they were then. I heard great stories about how an OS called Linux was going to be mainstream and the revolution was going to happen quickly and, seemingly, out of nowhere. Now the same Linux crowd, probably out of frustration, is looking for Google to destroy Microsoft. Oh well, I guess in a few more years I'll still be hearing the samething about some new shinny trinket.

        If Bill were as smart as he thinks he is, he'd have split his company up a few years ago.

        As true as this statement may be (and I'm not even sold on that), why do you take Gates as a fool? You may think Gates is a thief or a fraud, fine, but to underestimate Gates is a bad thing, if you see him as an enemy. It's odd how much of the /. crowd seem to think Gates is an idiot when he's the one sitting high on a mound of gold in his vast empire and those of the slashdot crowd posting are lucky to be moved out of our mothers basement.

        But Bill is shackled to Windows/Office.

        Do you really buy into this web app noise? Not to say that it's not going to happen but not in the next few years. I'm still looking for a web app beyond e-mail that is worth it's time.
        • by doublem ( 118724 )
          We've been hearing about the approaching power of the web app since Java and Netscape first cozied up to each other.

          It hasn't happened.

          Let's be blunt, web apps are slow loading and clunky compared to the average locally installed application, and it's likely to remain that way. Even broadband won't resolve the issue. Actual bandwidth will have to get to 100 MegaBit before most users will consider a web app fast enough to use.

          And even then we hit the old "Switch to OpenOffice" hurdle. Specifically, most u
      • by e2d2 ( 115622 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @11:34AM (#13693394)
        Their intractable problem is that they're chained to their Windows/Office franchise

        When you got 40 Billion in liquid you aren't chained to _anything_.

    • by idlake ( 850372 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:43AM (#13692908)
      IBM was fully aware of minicomputers and personal computers and the threat they represented, and they did everything they could to stop them taking away market share from them. IBM was paranoid and well-informed.

      In part, that's why IBM picked both a rather substandard hardware design and a rather substandard vendor to supply the operating system (IBM didn't have a choice but to go outside for their software--they were under antitrust scrutiny). This was no secret at the time--how badly the PC architecture and Microsoft's operating system sucked, and what IBM's motivations were, was obvious the day the PC was released.

      And it worked as IBM intended: it took 15 years for PC software to catch up with the state of the art of the mid-80's. That translated into a lot of extra sales for IBM's mainframes, servers, and workstations. Of course, the PC business ended up being bigger and more important, but even if IBM had know that at the time, they couldn't have acted on it.

      And Microsoft is about to repeat this. Microsoft would have to cannibalize their operating system and MS Office businesses in order to move ahead, and there is no way they are going to be able to do that.
    • No, the matter of the fact is that Microsoft is not aware of the problem. They know that Google is a problem, but they don't know how to solve the problem because they have the wrong question.

      Here are the things that Microsoft does not understand.

      1) It's about the community, not the company. Microsoft believes that if they offer compelling technology then people will buy it. The reality is that people have "good enough" and buy into things that make their lives interesting, (VOIP, Google Earth, etc)

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 01, 2005 @08:46AM (#13692706)
    Microsoft write an operating system and Office suite - their cash cows.

    Google's cash cow is google adwords and google adsense.

    Where's the competition between the two? where's the overlap in markets with REAL income, not late 1990s tech bubble crap that doesn't actually bring in $$ to the companies.
    • by DeadSea ( 69598 ) * on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:08AM (#13692777) Homepage Journal
      Microsoft is slowly losing their cash cow of operating systems and office software. Linux and open source software are poised to take over this area. Microsoft sees Google moving into new markets that they feel they should have been able to monopolize as well.

      The good news is that Google doesn't have quite the strangehold on search that microsoft had on OS and office software. The best Google can do to maintain a monopoly is patents which are hopefully less holding than Microsoft's vendor lock in strategy. Nobody has to use the same search as everybody else to be compatible. Any individual is free to choose a search engine. If MSN search and Yahoo get their act together and gave Google a real run for their money, everybody would win.

      • Google must quickly nimble at M$ browser market. The tie to IE for most web services on Windows must be made irrelevant for M$ to be defeated. What I see so far, from StarOffice 8.0 and the buzz with AJAX software is a good start. Google also has its video that requires no video playing software on the computer. The problem is that for StarOffice, it is not that presentable (read beautiful) on Linux as it is on Windows systems so that initial attraction is difficult to come along on Linux systems.
        • If AJAX apps are going to beat downloaded software they are going to have to get much faster. I don't care if thats some innovation in the apps or just the increase of broadband connections, but I would never use a word processor that forced me to wait while it bolded something (at least not when I have an alternative). I would also be a little concerned about what would happen when the internet connection goes down.
    • by cowscows ( 103644 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:41AM (#13692899) Journal
      I think there's a couple big points that the author of the article is missing. If this whole network apps replacing local apps really happens, it's not going to happen the way he thinks it is, for a couple reasons. One reason is open standards. Anyone who makes the switch from MS, a big reason for it is likely to be to escape the file format lock-in that MS inflicted for so long. Corporations won't blindly walk into that again. Along the same lines, I don't think any company, or too many people, will allow all their files to reside on some remote server somewhere. That doesn't make sense for a lot of reasons.

      Second is an economic reason. If you're going to buy some software, wouldn't you rather have a copy of it on your desk, installed on your own machine? I would imagine Google trying a subscription style payment system, which i think people will be reluctant to accept. It just takes too much control away from the user, and gives it to the company.

      But even if all of this does happen, I still don't see Google holding onto any sizeable monopoly for long. Open standards will allow just about anyone to offer a competing system. Google won't be able to pull the same underhanded tactics that MS did. And nobody wants to be subjected to another monopoly.

      Google is just intensely overrated. Yeah, they make some cool stuff, and at one time, they had a search engine that was very useful. But I don't know how far that's going to take them. There's two things that they use to make money right now. Search, (which I don't think they do nearly as well as they used to), and advertisements (spam!). While portable email might be useful enough that people will cope with having it decorated with advertisements, I don't think they'll feel the same about word processors, or powerpoint, or whatever.

      Anything that Google does to seriously threaten MS will mean them venturing away from what they're good at, and into new stuff. Sure, they've got smart employees, they might get it right, but they also might screw it up. The strongest thing Google has going for it right now is its brandname, but that's an easy thing to ruin.
      • for argument's sake - lets assume google make _some_ AJAX word processor..... you'd be able to run the app locally, as perhaps it's open source....bundled with apache? for a local server on the corp LAN? and the public can use the AJAX app on line, and save onto their desktop....on windows, or Ubuntu? Mac or Cell phone, blackberry? Or into their google internet 2Gb storage? Let's hope they use OASIS

        Man, the app - if open sourced - could even be branded with a school logo, or corporate mascot/symbol/porn
        • You should look into the Terminal Services enhancements in Windows Vista. They are allowing single applications to be remoted, very similar to what you can do with X today only with integrated authentication and session management. Furthermore, the Vista client integrates full desktop integration, including drag and drop support and mapping to file types. On a LAN, you can double click on a Word doc on machine A without a copy of Word installed, machine A will search the domain for a server with open lis
    • I've asked myself this. My opinion is that Microsoft doesn't like to be beat at virtually any game. They have MSN, Hotmail, and Messanger. The idea that someone would beat them out, or in this case stay well ahead of them, bothers them. They're paranoid that Google will enter into other spaces. Also, don't discount the fact that Microsoft has probably put a lot of similar technologies in the cooker that Google has been working on. That being said, I'm still convinced that to a great extent they just don't w
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Then, 20 years from now, compuglobalhypermeganet will re-revolutionize the industry by introducing the 'Toster' paradigm; google (and everyone else for that matter) will be unable to understand this company's buisness model, and thus they will become the industries new kingpin.
    • Then, 20 years from now...

      in the year 2525... if Bill is still alive... if Google can survive... they may find....

      If I was more creative (read: had my coffee already), I'd probably be able to crank out a parody. oh well.

  • $180 for a PDF (Score:5, Informative)

    by porksoda ( 253218 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @08:51AM (#13692714) Homepage
    "The Google Legacy" (Infonortics, $180.00 per download) is available in online PDF version only.

    $180 for some guy's opinion on google, go fuck yourself.
    • Indeed. Hate to piss karma points away, but one can't help but wonder how much this author paid to have this "story"/advertisement posted on Slashdot. C'mon....
    • Re:$180 for a PDF (Score:4, Interesting)

      by jtgeibel ( 919471 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @12:04PM (#13693520)
      This is just some guy trying to sell a book. The "news article" is just some publisher trying to draw on the hype around Google to sell this book. The book is actually only available in .pdf format and according to the publishers site [] is: "Written for business readers, especially senior executives of mid to large-sized, knowledge-based corporations".

      Reading the free sample chapter [] it is even more apparent that most of the claims he uses to back up his argument just don't make sense. For example, he claims "Google's ability to read data from many computers simultaneously is reminiscent of BitTorrent's technology." Honestly, there is probably little similarity between an algorithm optimized for reading data from multiple computers and an algorithm optimized to spread the pieces of a file to many different computers so that they can all share in the bandwidth of distributing the file. Rather, Google's technology tries to organize many copies of data across multiple computers, and then balance the load between the cluster while creating additional backup copies of data when one of the computers dies and stops responding. Such a statement sounds good to senior executives at a large corporation who probably do not understand any of the underling technology, and the author seems to only be riding on the hype of other high profile technologies. I don't see skype mentioned anywhere in the sample chapter, but would be surprised if it isn't mentioned in one of the other chapters.

      Plus his "unauthorized snapshot of Google's computing framework" makes absolutely no sense and the second figure shows the "fission occurring" as Google's "software engineering for higher performance" and "hardware engineering for reduced costs" come crashing together. Is this guy for real?

      What he has is guesses about some of the exciting things that Google might be developing, but I do not believe history is about to repeat itself and turn the tables on Microsoft, or that Microsoft is in any danger of being run of out the software industry anytime soon.

  • Google Patents (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Frankie70 ( 803801 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @08:53AM (#13692718)
    From TFA
    "In a broader sense, Arnold believes Google is building a "patent fence around search" technology as the firm moves to codify its unique competitive advantage."

    Is this good or bad?
  • Yeah, yeah (Score:3, Insightful)

    by nagora ( 177841 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @08:53AM (#13692722)
    Wake me up when Google can deliver a good search engine (I know they currently deliver the best search engine, that's not the same thing at all).

    To say nothing of the fact that Microsoft got a free ride from IBM to their current position; I can't see MS doing the same favour for Google, can you?

    And finally, why would anyone want to rely on a net connection to be able to write a letter, or trust a remote company to hold their data, or basically use any of these web-technologies pundits keep claiming are the next big thing? The world of users was ebullient when it shook off the shackels of having to connect to a mainframe to do work; why would they want to give that freedom up? Normal users, that is - I can see some attractions for stupid PHBs in companies. Google Maps is good, but would I rather have it running on my machine? Damn right I would!


    • by fish waffle ( 179067 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @08:58AM (#13692736)
      Google Maps is good, but would I rather have it running on my machine? Damn right I would!

      No, i don't think you would. You would probably find it a bit of a resource hog.
    • Erm I still have to connect to a central server to do work same as almost everyone else, unless your company doesn't have email, allows users to keep important documents only on your machine and no-one ever prints anything. Also companies are realising that the mainframe model was actually quite good since if you upgrade software you only have to do it on the server(s) not on a few thousand pcs.
    • Re:Yeah, yeah (Score:2, Insightful)

      by PGC ( 880972 )
      "And finally, why would anyone want to rely on a net connection to be able to write a letter, or trust a remote company to hold their data, ... " Because it's so easy and oh so handy ... anyone with half a brain wouldn't trust a remote company to hold their data...too bad most people have less.
    • Microsoft got a free ride from IBM to their current position; I can't see MS doing the same favour for Google, can you?

      Google runs on Internet Explorer, which is free with Windows.

    • Re:Yeah, yeah (Score:2, Insightful)

      by metricmusic ( 766303 )
      why would anyone.... trust a remote company to hold their data

      I'm not gonna answer why because everyone will have their own reasons but what I can say is theres not a shortage of them. These are the same people who use web based email and they will be the same people Google targets already (but not exclusively).

      As to:
      " rely on a net connection to be able to write a letter"

      I wonder hwo many google/hotmail/yahoo users type their letter in notepad and then paste it into their browser before sending.
    • Re:Yeah, yeah (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Pastis ( 145655 )
      > why would anyone want to rely on a net connection to be able to write a letter,

      why would anyone want to rely on electricity to be able to type a letter?

      why would anyone want to rely on a typing machine to be able to type a letter?

      why would anyone want to rely on ink to be able to write a letter?

      why would anyone want to rely on rock to be able to carve a letter? ... progress ...

      think universal remote access
      think ultra thin client
      think always connected
      think reduced costs
  • He thinks Google is tuffer than Microsoft. Buy his book to find out if he is right.
  • by Nahooda ( 906991 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @08:58AM (#13692738) Homepage
    During my studies in history I've learned that history _never_ repeats itself. Simply because if there's a situation _similar_ to one from the past there are a lot of factors that are simply completely different.


    Dennis B. Schramm
  • by backslashdot ( 95548 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:02AM (#13692750)
    By selling advertising? Great for google. But what about me? I'm going to be inundated with advertising and products that never come out of beta? Or will they release "Google OpenSolaris"? Oh, maybe they'll introduce "for pay" google? That's when I switch to yahoo.

    Anyway, if I was Microsoft .. I'd be shitting bricks over Apple.

    When they release OS X for x86 that can install on general computers, people will be screwed. Corporations may switch to Apple because there won't be fear of single vendor hardware lock in (no need to pay $$ for xpensive replacement parts). And most damning for microsoft the overall cost of Windows will have to drop to $49.99 resulting in mad revenue decline.

    Plus due to Napster's totally lame advertising, and mp3 player competitor's lack of design ability, Apple will make buttloads of $$ off entertainment devices like how Sony did in the 80's and 90's. Only way Apple can lose momentum is if the price of flash drops to $1 or less a gig. And they have to compete with $9.99 mp3 players.
    • in parent post I meant to say microsoft will be screwed .. not people will be screwed. People will benefit obviously!!
    • Not gonna happen... for the same reason people didn't switch to Linux, Beos or any of the others.

      Desktops are a natural monopoly - you want to be running what everyone else is running, so you can read their documents, etc.

      Not to mention the OSX integration with active directory sucks donkey & it isn't even going to get a look in in business until that's sorted (even on tiger, the only thing they really support is login.. and even that's half-assed - OSX doesn't treat the user as 'real', so they can't sh
  • Microsoft today is where IBM was years ago. And Google is in a position to do to Bill Gates what he did to IBM.

    I have no doubt about it, especially in light of Google's recent prolific production of popular services that are eating away the marketshares of multiple internet giants while still maintaining the same clean interface that got the brand in the dictionary! By the way, if you're in the game of slingin' securities, have a look-see at what the article's implications are to GOOG's and MSFT's stock p

  • by Andy_R ( 114137 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:04AM (#13692759) Homepage Journal
    Simply ship Internet Explorer with a adblock feature that blocks Google's ads, then Google's revenue stream gets turned off overnight.
    • by Phleg ( 523632 ) <stephen&touset,org> on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:52AM (#13692951)
      This is modded *interesting*? Google would clearly win a boatload of cash in a lawsuit, Microsoft would have the worst PR nightmare of their career on their hands, and it wouldn't work to begin with since Google can just change the DNS name of their ad servers.
  • This all sounds like a rehash of the AOL strategy or making customers believe their product "is the internet". I have a hard time beleiving that a new competitor can make a market with the same strategy in this jaded consumer market. Bandwidth really isn't an issue until the video content on the web is as plentiful as the text content. And I don't see that happening any time soon.
  • Google and Privacy (Score:5, Interesting)

    by HateBreeder ( 656491 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:08AM (#13692774)
    I wasn't really worried about Google's intentions until I've seen the latest "features" they added to their homepage.

    You might have noticed the: "Personalized Home" thing at the top left of your browser.
    In order to implement this feature, Google, obviously needs to know who is actually looking at the page, so that it could then personalize it - therefore, you need to "Sign In" to use the page.
    To me, this seems like a way to masquerade their true intentions.
    By "Signing in" you're actually letting Google know more information then it requires...
    You're not only "Personalizing" their homepage, but you're actually creating a mapping between a "user" and a "search".
    In other words, Google would now have the ability to know (same account as GMail) which user looked for what - beyond GMail (where they know what each user read).
    If you combine all this data, you get a HUGE database containing personal information.
    You'd be surprised how much one could learn just by looking at another person's search queries.
    I'm sure that in the following years Google would unveil many more features that would practically lead to them having access to ALL of our personal information.
    They're just taking it slowly, one step at a time.

    This seems to me like a privacy nightmare.
    Are we to let Google have all this information, while we sit aside, hoping they'll protect our data based solely on our good faith?

    Remember, that by not using their services, you're private information is not protected.
    It's enough that 1 person would have your contact information on his GMail account, another would have your e-Mail and some questions you asked. Google would just have to cross-refer and find whatever they like.

  • I don't think so (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Kawahee ( 901497 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:16AM (#13692809) Homepage Journal
    Google rules the web, Microsoft rules the desktop (and has a sizeable arm in the server market). I think it's fair to say that Google isn't all that related to Microsoft. Sure, Microsoft and Google have overlapping interests, but Microsoft's main income comes from Windows, and from Office.
    Does Google have Google OS? No.
    Does Google have Google Office? No.
    Does Google have free email? Yes.
    Does Google have a search system? Yes.

    Where Google competes with Microsoft, it succeeds, where Google doesn't, the industry is owned my Microsoft. And don't say OpenOffice or StarOffice or Linux is going to be killing MS anytime soon. StarOffice 7 was an MS Office killer, what happened to it? Nowhere. StarOffice 6 was an MS Office killer, what happened to it? So was version 5. Linux is meant to be better, but it's not gaining inroads in anywhere but the server market. It might be getting ready to approach the desktop market, but it's not going to do it successfully. And in the server market, Linux servers are used less than Windows servers (35% Windows, 35% Unix, 30% Linux, FreeBSD's in there somewhere SOURCE: /. article). Linux is a Windows killer, we don't see Windows being used less. We see that people are stopping the switch to Firefox, switching back from Linux, staying with Windows and Microsoft Office, despite these "MS-Killers". Google will stay, but it's not going to compete with Microsoft unless it starts an OS war.
    • Re:I don't think so (Score:5, Interesting)

      by HikingStick ( 878216 ) <> on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:32AM (#13692863)
      Does Google have Google OS? No.
      Does Google have Google Office? No.
      Does Google have free email? Yes.
      Does Google have a search system? Yes

      I believe these questions need some revision:

      Does Google need an OS? No!That's the real beauty and the real threat of Google. Microsoft still assumes that everything needs an OS. Google is proving time and again that the OS is nothing in the long run. Google is acting on something Microsoft considered a threat 10+ years ago--that the Internet may become an OS unto itself (not in the true sense of OS, but in the sense that its platform negates the need to run a proprietary OS like Windows).
      Does Google have the technology to release Google Office? Yes! Blogger already shows that you don't need a client app to have a robust word processor. The same is true for spreadsheets, presentations, and messaging (which they already have). The weak link would appear to be a DB, but the deployment of a web-based database engine would not be too difficult for them.
      Can Google enhance it's email system to provide the functionality of Outlook? Yes.
      Does Google have a better search system? Yes!
  • by kclittle ( 625128 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:20AM (#13692821)
    Oh, no! MS will fall to the wayside, just like IBM! Alas, such a fate!

    Uh... IBM's revenues for 2004 were in the $96B range, with profits in the $8.4B range. l [] Pooooor IBM, Pooooor MS...

    • They make that much money from OS/2?!

      I kid. You make a good point. Many folks who consider themselves techno-literate seem to think that the computing world is defined by wintel pc's and that everything else is a stunted offshoot of that. I hate to think what kind of genesis story these people would come up with if we had an apocalypse and had to start over: 'In the beginning was the IBM PC and it was good. But the most powerful of the gods, the one called Gates became jealous of the PC and slew it and it

  • by tcoady ( 22541 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:20AM (#13692823)
    From TFA He notes that Google's RTG feature already implements some 70 percent of the functions of Microsoft Office;.

    What is that? The real time guardian in talk? Nothing obvious here: []

  • by G4from128k ( 686170 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:20AM (#13692824)
    IBM thought they were king because they thought hardware was the real source of value. MS proved them wrong as Windows/Office software became the standard and PCs became commodities.

    MS thinks they are the king because they think software is the real source of value. Google is out to prove that services (search, gmail, froogle, adwords, etc.) are the real source of value.

    MS knows this and is trying to get into services, but I wonder if MSN search et al are the OS/2 of the day -- a dinosaur's attempt to compete on a changed playing field.

  • Their motto (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Crixus ( 97721 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:21AM (#13692825)
    Well... let's just hope the Google motto rules the day.

      Don't be evil. (or something like that)

    However, in a market economy where ruthlessness is required to protect assets, I don't see how Google can compete with a company like MS, WITHOUT being evil. The question it, how will the fallout affect normal people. Will the fallout be evil?
    • Can you define "evil"? It's a word that I've personally only heard used in children's fairy tales and by George Bush. In all honesty, I don't know what "evil" means in real life.
  • I thought this was to be the digital age of openness. That we would be free to use whatever software we liked, because programs can exchange information freely thanks to technologies like XML/XSLT and applications will run on any system because the source is open and modern languages are designed with portability in mind. Why oh why would we put ourselves in the position where single company rules the world again? Its for this reason that I think this guy is full of it. Yes, Google want to gain ground on M
  • by Danathar ( 267989 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:24AM (#13692838) Journal
    Companies that do well against microsoft specfically DON'T try to compete head to head with them. Microsoft's strategy has always been to bait a competitor to compete on their turf and then steamroller them.

    It's been proven that if you create a product that's good, that people want to buy AND you don't sit on your ASS while Microsoft copies and then bundles your product with windows, you CAN succeed and flourish. don't have to BEAT Microsoft in order to win.
  • Get real. There has not been any real innovation for a long time.

    Agreed, there has been a lot of evolution.. But innovation ceased a long time ago.
  • by FishandChips ( 695645 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:32AM (#13692864) Journal
    "According to 'The Google Legacy,' history is about to repeat itself."

    History never repeats itself. I guess this guy is a little optimistic if he thinks folks will pay 180 dollars for a cliche that isn't true in the first place. Ebay is the place to sell cliches, I guess.

    "When you have a problem with Windows, always reformat and reinstall" - what am I bid, $150, $180, $200??!
    "Linux is the wave of the future" - opening at $8, no $10 to the gentleman on my right with the beard and sandals
    "No one ever got fired for buying IBM" - we have telephone bids for $500

    Besides, it's a bit premature to talk about the "legacy" of an outfit that's till in its infancy. Microsoft has $50 billion in cash, annual profits of around $12 billion and a vast monopoly. They aren't just going to roll over, stick their legs in the air and die.
  • by SuperDuG ( 134989 ) <`be' `at' `'> on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:38AM (#13692885) Homepage Journal
    Here's my problem. Well let me list my precursor problems first. 1.) Why is it that everytime someone writes some stupid story about google that it ends up on the front page? 2.) Why is google any more different than any other successful IT company? 3.) The search engine war is never EVER going to end.

    Google is in no way shape or form a Microsoft company. Microsoft is a solid company that makes software, hardware, and a crap-ton of other things. They are not a "one really whizbang product" kind of company. I'm not an MS fan boy by any meas, but lets face facts here, MS is bigger, stronger, and richer than google. No questions asked, they are, period.

    However, this brings up an interesting problem. Everyone thinks that MS is going to fail, but give them time, they have just recently announced that they plan to topple google. Let me remind everyone of some past MS "failures" and company's that "Couldn't be beat". Lets start out a little early ...

    *Cue the flashback music*

    Remember when the PC was something that was really expensive and that no one really knew what to do with except it could be used as a fancy typewriter and play games? Remember when there were a few company's at the time (for this flashback we'll only acknowledge two) Microsoft and Apple. Apple was going to revolutionize the world with the MAC. Moral of the story ... how many Mac's are there in comparison to PC's running windows?

    *Cue more flashback music*

    Remember when Mosaic and Navigator were the best kids on the block for viewing gopher:// [gopher] and http:/// [http] sites? Wow, those were the days. You had to pay for a copy of netscape ... PAY FOR A BROWSER. Life was good, then Mosaic's IP got bought by this weird company called Microsoft. And ... wouldn't you know it, they released Internet Explorer. Well one thing led to another and ... Moral of the story ... how many people use Internet Explorer now?

    *Cue a Billy Joel's We Didn't Start the fire*

    Now we find ourselves in the world of Office suite software. No longer is the office suite a word processor! No! In this world there is email, word processing, typesetting, flyer making, and who knows what else. Anyways There used to be this bastard of a product called Word Perfect (by bastard follow who all owned it ... Novell Corel ... etc) and then there was Microsoft Office. I'm not going to do anything catchy here, but lets face it, no one even really remember Word Perfect or Word Star or Star Office, or any of it. They use Microsoft Office ...

    *Cue the rest of We Didn't Start the Fire*

    Remember when if you wanted a network server, you used Unix or Novel? (Again for arguments sake we'll focus on the big boys). Remember when MS announced it was going to be bigger than Unix and Novel? Remember when everyone was sure that there was no way to ever be bigger than any of the network operating solutions? How many NT/Server 2k0/3 are out there now?

    *Cue something classical ... Aerosmith perhaps*

    Back to a generation some of you youngsters might remember. Remember when the three big players for video game consoles were Nintendo, Sega, and Sony? Remember who sold almost a comparable amount of X-Box's to the PS-2 (by year not in whole). Yup, Microsoft again.

    What I'm getting at is this. If there's one thing Microsoft knows, it knows how to create a market for itself and give the market what it needs. When it wants to dedicate resources to taking something over, it does it, and it does it full out. The new MS search isn't really all that great right now, but lets just look at the facts ...

    Google has gmail, which is pretty popular. Microsoft has hotmail, which is more popular.
    Google has gtalk (or whatever the hell its called). Microsoft has

    • by RoLi ( 141856 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @10:47AM (#13693172)
      Let me remind everyone of some past MS "failures" and company's that "Couldn't be beat".

      Actually many seem to believe that Microsoft "can't be beaten".

      You want some MS failures?

      • MSN was supposed to crush TCP/IP and HTTP and establish Microsoft's own standards. Oh what happened? Now MSN uses TCP/IP and HTTP/HTML like everybody else...
      • Windows on non-x86 platforms failed: On PPC, on Alpha
      • XBox sold only half as many units in the first 6 months as Microsoft expected and caused about 1 billion of losses per year (oh yeah, I know the MS-fanboys see that as a "success")
      • The "Otto"-project, the "HomeR"-project, etc.
      • And of course MSN never became very successful as a search engine

      Sure Microsoft has insane amounts of money, but they are not as godlike as you want us to believe. They are just mere mortals.

    • As far as ad revenue goes, would you people please look at all the things that MS owns that can utilize advertising ... now please ... tell me exactly where google is beating MS at anything.

      Sure, Microsoft can just slap ads into all of their products...Windows, Office, the works. Now who's going to go out and buy Windows, or any other Microsoft product for that matter, when you know it's coming loaded to the brim with pre-installed Microsoft sanctioned adware? I know I'm not.

      My point is that while yo
    • What I think you forget, is that in 1980 there was this company called IBM, they had billions in sales, billions in cash, and any time a large company needed computers they called IBM. Suddenly this little company called MS appeared and changed the rules, and the unbeatable goliath of IBM took about 5 years to fall completely apart into a smoldering wreck. Yes they reorged, no they didn't go out of business, and I don't think MS will go out of business either.

      MS won in the 90's because they made network c
    • Why is google any more different than any other successful IT company?

      It's not, really. I feel pretty much the same way about Google today as I felt about Yahoo years ago. "Geeky name, great products, God I hope they kill Microsoft." Look back in the Slashdot archives. I'm almost sure that Slashdot was saying the same thing about Yahoo, and even Netscape.

      Microsoft (and AOL) killed Netscape. Yahoo just kind of stopped being cool. I'm not sure why, and the management of Google needs to really study

    • Remember when the PC was something that was really expensive and that no one really knew what to do with except it could be used as a fancy typewriter and play games?

      You state that like PCs of today are anything more than fancy typewriters that play games. This is how they're seen by a huge percentage of the computer owning public. I'm sorry but Microsoft Windows didn't kick start the PC industry, DOS did. MS-DOS ran on everyone's PC clones, not just IBM's hardware. This put MS-DOS on just about every PC

  • by Brad1138 ( 590148 ) <> on Saturday October 01, 2005 @09:52AM (#13692948)
    We all like to hate & bash the big guy, Microsoft, Intel, Wallmart... Will we hate Google? Is it possible for a company to be the biggest and not be hated, bashed or vilified?
  • by SpeedyGonz ( 771424 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @10:08AM (#13693000)
    I for one welcome our new search engine overlords
  • by Ex-MislTech ( 557759 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @10:19AM (#13693040)
    1) Web based office suite - Web based total office solution .

    2) IpSCSI RAID storage and remote backup or a variant thereof .

    3) GoogleNET - Dark fiber is currently being bought by them nationwide - the extent of this is not known.

    4) GoogleWIFI - currently a pilot project in bay area, may roll out nationwide

    5) Google IpTV - Multicast/Broadcast video streams that work thru their google video player .

    If 3 of 5 of these fly it is a doomsday scenario for more than just M$ .

    They could become the fastest growing ISP in the US, and could displace cable and satellite TV .

    I don't know if they want to go this big out of the gate, but the google video player debut
    of the matrix sequel played smooth as glass here at my house via the net .

    A long shadow could be cast, and the great would tremble, and a new sun rises over google, heheh .


  • by canuck57 ( 662392 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @10:20AM (#13693043)

    Microsoft has yet to realize that software is now a commodity item. $600++ for the OS and Office is far over priced if they want to remain at the top. The price should be like a book, say $50 like they sell it in China. (less for illegal copies).

    Google is already in the worlds biggest emerging market and presumably making a profit. []

    Microsoft is jealous but it isn't going to change the fact that to compute you do not need Microsoft.

    But imagine if Google came up with that killer app to cluster the whole worlds computer network which is best run on Linux. Or perhaps turn their CPU power into automated remote support for software updates to Linux and charge $19 per year for the service or perhaps free if Google put a single ad banner on the screen. And a user could select from the finest open source to install and run. If their system was stolen they could restore data and setting with their Google account. Now that would turn Microsoft on its end.

    Google has it right, it is about servicing the customers needs for a profit and not DRM butt kissing, perpetual bug fixing, insatiable patching, often crashing and expensive. So unless Google side steps, Microsoft might as well save their dollars.

  • by west ( 39918 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @10:55AM (#13693216)
    Remember that IBM didn't lose it's market, in fact, all the competition in its market segment (mainframes) essentially died out. Nobody cares about anti-competitive practices in that market anymore. IBM simply failed to win the *next* market segment.

    If the analogy really stands up, then Microsoft will own the desktop forever, and all the rest of the competitors in that space will shrivel and die as the market becomes less relevant. The next market (network applications) will overshadow the desktop market.

    It would seem to me that if one was really interested in the desktop market and wanted to see continued competition, then it's quite possible that Google winning the next war could be the worst thing that could occur. Linux could be the next Amdahl :-).
  • by mattgreen ( 701203 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @12:59PM (#13693729)
    As much as MS is decried for being arrogant, Google now seems to be doing the same thing. Statements like "we'll topple Microsoft because they don't understand us" and the implication that, "we're the new Microsoft, the dominant player" point to a culture of corporate hubris. That is a dangerous thing, although I suppose it is inevitable when their stock price is as inflated as it is.
  • by kbahey ( 102895 ) on Saturday October 01, 2005 @03:17PM (#13694329) Homepage
    It was not Microsoft who dethroned IBM. It was the minis then distributed computing that did so.

    IBM was the king of the mainframe: highly reliable and expensive centralized computing that is accessed from terminals.

    The trouble for IBM started with the minis with proprietary operating systems, such as DEC VMS and the like. Then it was the UNIX minis made by several vendors like Sun, Pyramid, HP.

    Much later it was client server computing that finally toppled IBM from the position of dominance they had. There was Novell Netware and Banyan VINES there as well, way before Windows networking was something to go by.

    They changed from the arrogant top player to a much humbled, yet respected company. This was in the early to mid 1990s as I recall.

    Microsoft's role in all this is not that great, apart from providing the operating system for PCs in the client server world.

They are called computers simply because computation is the only significant job that has so far been given to them.