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February 27, 2010

Technology has made my life progressively easier and more difficult all at the same time. Access to information has become easier and easier, and with that, the expectation of finding and knowing large amounts of information. What’s a girl to do with the so-called information overload that everyone is talking about these days?

Well, that’s easy, really. Just Google. (After all of my professed love for the company, did you really expect anything else? If you did, well, let me know? I might be missing out on something big…)

Google can help you email. And Google can organize your email and keep you from sending emails without attachments when you mention you attached something. Google let’s you chat. Google can organize your life and send you updates via text and email and popups as to when your appointments are scheduled and can share your calendar with your friends or the world. Google can bring all of the news to one place for you, so you don’t have to visit 5 different news sites every day. Google can gather your blogs and put them together in a seamless reading experience. Google can prepare word documents. And spreadsheets. And presenations. And forms. Google can get you from point A to point B, can tell you the best price on anything you wish to purchase, and can usually find the answer to any question you might have, like whether Coca-Cola originally contained trace amounts of cocaine. (It did, but only trace amounts.)

As I’ve said before and will continue to say, Google makes my life easier. Tremendously so. So why not use it?

The controversy is as old as the day as long: privacy. Books haven been written about Google’s invasion of privacy and its impending world domination; websites are devoted to going “Google-Free.” But what is the hype about? Is it just hype? Or is it something more?

It comes down to this: Google is a company. Companies exist to make money.

Let’s extrapolate a little further. Google provides all of its services free of charge. But nothing is free! Just like physics, in the business world, everything has an equal and opposite reaction. And in the case of Google and all it’s fabulousness and life-simplifying services, we’re trading information (which some might argue is really our privacy). Every time I open Gmail (which, let’s face it, is about 25 times a day, if its not open continually) or use Docs to share a spreadsheet or share an event via Calendar or do any sort of search, I am getting something valuable and giving away something that is just as valuable, at least to Google.

Is the trade worth it? I’d say so. As my dear friend Kenya Ford likes to say, “What you be doing, anyway?”

One Comment leave one →
  1. February 27, 2010 12:01 pm

    Such an easy, peaceful feeling you’ve got here. A cool drink of water for sure after all the yammering we’ve been doing on McChesney and now all the ‘evil’ we’re tried to squeeze out of excellent product development and impeccable engineering.
    Can we just chant together “I believe”…here’s my clicks, go ahead Google watch me discover really cool stuff. O, and thanks for the free ride.
    It’s just a big, wonderful digital library that’s so much better than the Dewey decimal system. After all, libraries kept track of the books you checked out for free all these years…maybe it was a conspiracy to sell your secrets?
    Thanks for the cool breeze of clarity. Check out my blog this week…it’s a thank you letter to LarryandSergey and the ineffable beauty of the wisdom of crowds.

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