Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Google

Company Overview




Our name



Founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin named the search engine they built "Google," a play on the word "googol," the mathematical term for a 1 followed by 100 zeros. The name reflects the immense volume of information that exists, and the scope of Google's mission: to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful.



Search



When you visit www.google.com or one of more than 150 other Google domains, you can find information in many different languages (and translate between them), check stock quotes and sports scores, find news headlines and look up the address of your local post office or grocery store. You can also find images, videos, maps, patents and much more. With universal search technology, you can often find all of these things combined in one query.



Of course, there is a lot of information in the world that is not yet online, so we're also working to get more of it digitized, such as in Google Books or the Google News Archive. We also know that whenever you search the web you want it to be as fast as possible, with all your favorite websites at your fingertips, so we offer software like Google Toolbar and Google Chrome to help you browse the web quickly and easily.



Search is how Google began, and it's at the heart of what we do today. We devote more engineering time to search than to any other product at Google, because we believe that search can always be improved. We are constantly working to provide you with more relevant results so that you find what you're looking for faster. To that end, we've added services such as personalized search, which tailors results for you if you are signed in to your Google account.



Ads



As a business, Google generates the majority of its revenue by offering advertisers measurable, cost-effective and highly relevant advertising, so that the ads are useful to the people who see them as well as to the advertisers who run them.



Hundreds of thousands of advertisers worldwide use our Google AdWords program to promote their products and services on the web. Advertisers bid in an open and competitive auction to have their ads appear alongside the search results for particular keywords. They can specify the geographic location and time of day for their ads to appear. As a result, people see ads that are so useful and relevant that they become a valuable form of information in their own right.



Since we believe you should know when someone has paid to put a message in front of you, we distinguish ads from search results or other content on a page by labeling them as "sponsored links" or "Ads by Google". We don't sell ad placement in our search results, nor do we allow people to pay for a higher ranking there.



In addition, hundreds of thousands of partners, from bloggers to major online publishers, participate in our Google AdSense program. This program delivers ads from our AdWords advertisers that are relevant to the content or search results on partner sites. The AdSense program enables advertisers to extend the reach of their ad campaigns, improves partners' ability to generate revenue from their content, and delivers relevant ads for their users.



In addition to our core AdWords and AdSense programs, we offer a number of other services to advertisers, including various advertising formats on YouTube, Google TV Ads, as well as online ad serving and management services through DoubleClick. Finally, we aim to make advertising more measurable and efficient with free tools for advertisers such as Google Analytics, Website Optimizer, Insights for Searchand Ad Planner. These tools help advertisers to analyze their campaigns, test them, and make them more efficient and effective.



Apps



We build web applications, or "apps", to make it simpler for people to share information and get things done together. Gmail, Google Calendar, Blogger and Google Docs help people communicate and collaborate more easily, whether planning a wedding, building a business itinerary or just keeping friends and family up to date. The information is stored securely online, accessible from any device with a web connection. And because it lives online, it's easy to share with a group of collaborators. Everyone in the group can work on the same material at the same time, even if they're working in different buildings, countries or continents.



Today people want the same ease of use on their work computers that they have on their increasingly powerful personal computers. This is why we offer businesses a suite called Google Apps. It's powerful enough for large enterprises (we use it across all of Google, in fact) but simple enough for mom-and-pop businesses too. We're continually improving Google Apps, so you always have the latest version without worrying about maintenance or upgrades. And it's much less expensive than most traditional software. Google Apps is designed to fit the way people naturally live, work and socialize, so they can focus on what they're doing rather than worrying about maintaining the software.



We built Google Apps from the ground up for today's connected world. Our infrastructure is designed to keep our users' data safe and secure and to make our apps fast and responsive. We firmly believe that on the web, your data belongs to you, and should be portable: when you use Google Apps, you can export your mail, documents, photos or calendar entries whenever you like.



Mobile



You should be able to access all of Google's services wherever you are – even if you don't have a computer nearby. We make it easy for you to use your favorite Google products, from Google Maps to YouTube, right from your phone. As mobile devices become increasingly central to people's lives, we work hard to find new and better ways to help you get the information you need when you are on the go.



We're also focused on enabling others to innovate in the mobile space. Working closely with the Open Handset Alliance, we developed Android, the world's first fully open platform that any mobile developer can use and any hardware manufacturer can install on a device. Android was built with the web in mind, and we believe that it will help drive innovation so that more people can use better and cheaper mobile devices to access the Internet.



The road ahead



A lot has changed since the first Google search engine appeared. We have grown and expanded our offerings from a single service to dozens, often in as many languages. We now have thousands of employees and offices around the world. But some things haven't changed: our dedication to our users and our belief in the possibilities of the Internet itself.
Google


Google Inc.

Type:  Public (NASDAQ: GOOG, FWB: GGQ1)

Industry:  Internet, Computer software

Founded:  Menlo Park, California (September 4, 1998 (1998-09-04))[1]

Founder(s):  Sergey M. Brin
Lawrence E. Page

Headquarters:  Mountain View, California, United States

Area served:  Worldwide

Key people:

 Eric E. Schmidt

(Chairman & CEO)

Sergey M. Brin

(Technology President)

Lawrence E. Page

(Products President)


Products:  See list of Google products.

Revenue:  ▲US$23.651 billion (2009)[2][3]

Operating income:  ▲US$8.312 billion (2009)[2][3]

Profit:  ▲US$6.520 billion (2009)[2][3]

Total assets:  ▲US$40.497 billion (2009)[2][3]

Total equity:  ▲US$36.004 billion (2009)[3]

Employees:  21,805 (2010)[4]

Subsidiaries:  YouTube, DoubleClick, On2 Technologies, GrandCentral, Picnik, Aardvark, AdMob

Website Google.com



Google Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG, FWB: GGQ1) is a multinational public cloud computing, Internet search, and advertising technologies corporation. Google hosts and develops a number of Internet-based services and products,[5] and generates profit primarily from advertising through its AdWords program.[2][6] The company was founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin, often dubbed the "Google Guys",[7][8][9][10] while the two were attending Stanford University as Ph.D. candidates. It was first incorporated as a privately held company on September 4, 1998, with its initial public offering to follow on August 19, 2004. The company's stated mission from the outset was "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful",[11] and the company's unofficial slogan – coined by Google engineer Paul Buchheit – is Don't be evil.[12][13] In 2006, the company moved to their current headquarters in Mountain View, California.



Google runs over one million servers in data centers around the world,[14] and processes over one billion search requests[15] and twenty petabytes of user-generated data every day.[16][17][18] Google's rapid growth since its incorporation has triggered a chain of products, acquisitions and partnerships beyond the company's core search engine. The company offers online productivity software, such as its Gmail e-mail software, and social networking tools, including Orkut and, more recently, Google Buzz. Google's products extend to the desktop as well, with applications such as the web browser Google Chrome, the Picasa photo organization and editing software, and the Google Talk instant messaging application. More notably, Google leads the development of the Android mobile phone operating system, used on a number of phones such as the Nexus One and Motorola Droid. Because of its popularity and numerous products, Alexa lists Google as the Internet's most visited website.[19] Google is also Fortune Magazine's fourth best place to work,[20] and BrandZ's most powerful brand in the world.[21] The dominant market position of Google's services has led to criticism of the company over issues including privacy, copyright, and censorship.
History

Main article: History of Google



Google's original homepage had a simple design since its founders were not experienced in HTML, the language for designing web pages.[24]Google began in January 1996 as a research project by Larry Page and Sergey Brin when they were both PhD students at Stanford University in California.[25] While conventional search engines ranked results by counting how many times the search terms appeared on the page, the two theorized about a better system that analyzed the relationships between websites.[26] They called this new technology PageRank, where a website's relevance was determined by the number of pages, and the importance of those pages, that linked back to the original site.[27] A small search engine called Rankdex was already exploring a similar strategy.[28] Page and Brin originally nicknamed their new search engine "BackRub", because the system checked backlinks to estimate the importance of a site.[29][30] Eventually, they changed the name to Google, originating from a misspelling of the word "googol",[31][32] the number one followed by one hundred zeros, which was meant to signify the amount of information the search engine was to handle. Originally, Google ran under the Stanford University website, with the domain google.stanford.edu. The domain google.com was registered on September 15, 1997,[33] and the company was incorporated on September 4, 1998, at a friend's garage in Menlo Park, California.



Financing and initial public offering



The first iteration of Google production servers was built with inexpensive hardware.[34]The first funding for Google was an August 1998 contribution of US$100,000 from Andy Bechtolsheim, co-founder of Sun Microsystems, given before Google was even incorporated.[35] On June 7, 1999, a $25 million round of funding was announced,[36] with major investors including the venture capital firms Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Sequoia Capital.[35]



Google's initial public offering (IPO) took place five years later on August 19, 2004. The company offered 19,605,052 shares at a price of $85 per share.[37][38] Shares were sold in a unique online auction format using a system built by Morgan Stanley and Credit Suisse, underwriters for the deal.[39][40] The sale of $1.67 billion gave Google a market capitalization of more than $23 billion.[41] The vast majority of the 271 million shares remained under the control of Google, and many Google employees became instant paper millionaires. Yahoo!, a competitor of Google, also benefited because it owned 8.4 million shares of Google before the IPO took place.[42]



Some people speculated that Google's IPO would inevitably lead to changes in company culture. Reasons ranged from shareholder pressure for employee benefit reductions to the fact that many company executives would become instant paper millionaires.[43] As a reply to this concern, co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page promised in a report to potential investors that the IPO would not change the company's culture.[44] In 2005, however, articles in The New York Times and other sources began suggesting that Google had lost its anti-corporate, no evil philosophy.[45][46][47] In an effort to maintain the company's unique culture, Google designated a Chief Culture Officer, who also serves as the Director of Human Resources. The purpose of the Chief Culture Officer is to develop and maintain the culture and work on ways to keep true to the core values that the company was founded on: a flat organization with a collaborative environment.[48] Google has also faced allegations of sexism and ageism from former employees.[49][50]



The stock's performance after the IPO went well, with shares hitting $700 for the first time on October 31, 2007,[51] primarily because of strong sales and earnings in the online advertising market.[52] The surge in stock price was fueled mainly by individual investors, as opposed to large institutional investors and mutual funds.[52] The company is now listed on the NASDAQ stock exchange under the ticker symbol GOOG and under the Frankfurt Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol GGQ1.



Growth

In March 1999, the company moved its offices to Palo Alto, California, home to several other noted Silicon Valley technology startups.[53] The next year, against Page and Brin's initial opposition toward an advertising-funded search engine,[54] Google began selling advertisements associated with search keywords.[25] In order to maintain an uncluttered page design and increase speed, advertisements were solely text-based. Keywords were sold based on a combination of price bids and clickthroughs, with bidding starting at five cents per click.[25] This model of selling keyword advertising was first pioneered by Goto.com, an Idealab spin off created by Bill Gross.[55][56] When the company changed names to Overture Services, it sued Google over alleged infringements of the company's pay-per-click and bidding patents. Overture Services would later be bought by Yahoo! and renamed Yahoo! Search Marketing. The case was then settled out of court, with Google agreeing to issue shares of common stock to Yahoo! in exchange for a perpetual license.[57]



During this time, Google was granted a patent describing their PageRank mechanism.[58] The patent was officially assigned to Stanford University and lists Lawrence Page as the inventor. In 2003, after outgrowing two other locations, the company leased their current office complex from Silicon Graphics at 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway in Mountain View, California.[59] The complex has since come to be known as the Googleplex, a play on the word googolplex, the number one followed by a googol zeroes. Three years later, Google would buy the property from SGI for $319 million.[60] By that time, the name "Google" had found its way into everyday language, causing the verb "google" to be added to the Merriam Webster Collegiate Dictionary and the Oxford English Dictionary, denoted as "to use the Google search engine to obtain information on the Internet."[61][62]



Acquisitions and partnerships

See also: List of acquisitions by Google

Since 2001, Google has acquired many companies, mainly focusing on small venture capital companies. In 2004, Google acquired Keyhole, Inc..[63] The start-up company developed a product called Earth Viewer that gave a 3-D view of the Earth. Google renamed the service to Google Earth in 2005. Two years later, Google bought the online video site YouTube for $1.65 billion in stock.[64] On April 13, 2007, Google reached an agreement to acquire DoubleClick for $3.1 billion, giving Google valuable relationships that DoubleClick had with Web publishers and advertising agencies.[65] Later that same year, Google purchased GrandCentral for $50 million.[66] The site would later be changed over to Google Voice. On August 5, 2009, Google bought out its first public company, purchasing video software maker On2 Technologies for $106.5 million.[67] Google also acquired Aardvark, a social network search engine, for $50 million. Google commented in their internal blog, "we're looking forward to collaborating to see where we can take it".[68] And, in April 2010, Google announced it had acquired a hardware startup, Agnilux.[69]



In addition to the numerous companies Google has purchased, the company has partnered with other organizations for everything from research to advertising. In 2005, Google partnered with NASA Ames Research Center to build 1,000,000 square feet (93,000 m2) of offices.[70] The offices would be used for research projects involving large-scale data management, nanotechnology, distributed computing, and the entrepreneurial space industry. Later that year, Google entered into a partnership with Sun Microsystems in October 2005 to help share and distribute each other's technologies.[71] The company also partnered with AOL of Time Warner,[72] to enhance each other's video search services. Google's 2005 partnerships also included financing the new .mobi top-level domain for mobile devices, along with other companies including Microsoft, Nokia, and Ericsson.[73] Google would later launch "Adsense for Mobile", taking advantage of the emerging mobile advertising market.[74] Increasing their advertising reach even further, Google and Fox Interactive Media of News Corp. entered into a $900 million agreement to provide search and advertising on popular social networking site MySpace.[75]



In October 2006, Google announced that it had acquired the video-sharing site YouTube for US$1.65 billion in Google stock, and the deal was finalized on November 13, 2006.[76] Google does not provide detailed figures for YouTube's running costs, and YouTube's revenues in 2007 were noted as "not material" in a regulatory filing.[77] In June 2008, a Forbes magazine article projected the 2008 YouTube revenue at US$200 million, noting progress in advertising sales.[78] In 2007, Google began sponsoring NORAD Tracks Santa, a service that pretends to follow Santa Claus' progress on Christmas Eve,[79] using Google Earth to "track Santa" in 3-D for the first time,[80] and displacing former sponsor AOL. Google-owned YouTube gave NORAD Tracks Santa its own channel.[81]



In 2008, Google developed a partnership with GeoEye to launch a satellite providing Google with high-resolution (0.41 m monochrome, 1.65 m color) imagery for Google Earth. The satellite was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base on September 6, 2008.[82] Google also announced in 2008 that it was hosting an archive of Life Magazine's photographs as part of its latest partnership. Some of the images in the archive were never published in the magazine.[83] The photos were watermarked and originally had copyright notices posted on all photos, regardless of public domain status.[84]



In 2010, Google made its first investment in a renewable-energy project, putting up $38.8 million into two wind farms in North Dakota. The company announced the two locations will generate 169.5 megawatts of power, or enough to supply 55,000 homes. The farms, which were developed by NextEra Energy Resources, will reduce fossil fuel use in the region and return profits. NextEra Energy Resources sold Google a twenty percent stake in the project in order to get funding for project development.[85] Also in 2010, Google purchased Global IP Solutions, a Norway based company that provides web-based teleconferencing and other related services. This acquisition will enable Google to add telephone-style services to its list of products.[86] On May 27, 2010, Google announced it had also closed the acquisition of the mobile ad network, AdMob. This purchase occurred days after the Federal Trade Commission closed its investigation into the purchase.[87] Google acquired the company for an undisclosed amount.[88]



Products and services

See also: List of Google products

Advertising

Ninety-nine percent of Google's revenue is derived from its advertising programs.[89] For the 2006 fiscal year, the company reported $10.492 billion in total advertising revenues and only $112 million in licensing and other revenues.[90] Google has implemented various innovations in the online advertising market that helped propel them to one of the biggest advertisers in the market. Using technology from the company DoubleClick, Google can determine user interests and target advertisements appropriately so they are relevant to the context they are in and the user that is viewing them.[91][92] Google Analytics allows website owners to track where and how people use their website, allowing for in-depth research into getting users to go where you want them to go.[93]



Google advertisements can be placed on third-party websites in a two-part program. Google's AdWords allows advertisers to display their advertisements in the Google content network, through either a cost-per-click or cost-per-view scheme. The sister service, Google AdSense, allows website owners to display these advertisements on their website, and earn money every time ads are clicked.[94] One of the disadvantages and criticisms of this program is Google's inability to combat click fraud, when a person or automated script "clicks" on advertisements without being interested in the product, just to earn money for the website owner. Industry reports in 2006 claim that approximately 14 to 20 percent of clicks were in fact fraudulent or invalid.[95] In June 2008, Google reached an advertising agreement with Yahoo!, which would have allowed Yahoo! to feature Google advertisements on their web pages. The alliance between the two companies was never completely realized due to antitrust concerns by the U.S. Department of Justice. As a result, Google pulled out of the deal in November 2008.[96][97]



Search engine



In 2010, Google updated its homepage with a new shadow-less logo.[98]The Google web search engine is the company's most popular service. According to market research published by comScore in November 2009, Google is the dominant search engine in the United States market, with a market share of 65.6%.[99] Google indexes trillions of web pages, so that users can search for the information they desire, through the use of keywords and operators. This basic search engine has spread to specific services as well, including an image search engine, the Google News search site, Google Maps, and more. In early 2006, the company launched Google Video, which allowed users to upload, search, and watch videos from the Internet.[100] In 2009, however, uploads to Google Video were discontinued so that Google could focus more on the search aspect of the service.[101] The company even developed Google Desktop, a desktop search application used to search for files local to one's computer.



One of the more controversial search services Google hosts is Google Books. The company began scanning books and uploading limited previews, and full books where allowed, into their new book search engine. However, a number of copyright disputes arose, and Google reached a revised settlement in 2009 to limit its scans to books from the U.S., the U.K., Australia and Canada.[102] Furthermore, the Paris Civil Court ruled against Google in late 2009, asking them to remove the works of La Martinière (Éditions du Seuil) from their database.[103] In competition with Amazon.com, Google plans to sell digital versions of new books.[104]



Productivity tools

In addition to its standard web search services, Google has released over the years a number of online productivity tools. Gmail, a free webmail service provided by Google, was launched as an invitation-only beta program on April 1, 2004,[105] and became available to the general public on February 7, 2007.[106] The service was upgraded from beta status on July 7, 2009,[107] at which time it had 146 million users monthly.[108] The service would be the first online email service with one gigabyte of storage, and the first to keep emails from the same conversation together in one thread, similar to an Internet forum.[105] The service currently offers over 7400 MB of free storage with additional storage ranging from 20 GB to 16 TB available for US$0.25 per 1 GB per year.[109] Furthermore, software developers know Gmail for its pioneering use of AJAX, a programming technique that allows web pages to be interactive without refreshing the browser.[110]



Google Docs, another part of Google's productivity suite, allows users to create, edit, and collaborate on documents in an online environment, not dissimilar to Microsoft Word. The service was originally called Writely, but was obtained by Google on March 9, 2006, where it was released as an invitation-only preview.[111] On June 6 after the acquisition, Google created an experimental spreadsheet editing program,[112] which would be combined with Google Docs on October 10.[113] A program to edit presentations would complete the set on September 17, 2007,[114] before all three services were taken out of beta along with Gmail on July 7, 2009.[107] Google Calendar, a calendar program closely integrated with Gmail,[115] was also taken out of beta that day after its beta release on April 12, 2006.[116]



Enterprise products



Google's search appliance at the 2008 RSA ConferenceGoogle entered the enterprise market in February 2002 with the launch of its Google Search Appliance, targeted toward providing search technology for larger organizations.[25] Google launched the Mini three years later, which was targeted at smaller organizations. Late in 2006, Google began to sell Custom Search Business Edition, providing customers with an advertising-free window into Google.com's index. The service was renamed Google Site Search in 2008.[117]



Another one of Google's enterprise products is Google Apps Premier Edition. The service, and its accompanying Google Apps Education Edition and Standard Edition, allow companies, schools, and other organizations to bring Google's online applications, such as Gmail and Google Documents, into their own domain. The Premier Edition specifically includes extras over the Standard Edition such as more disk space, API access, and premium support, and it costs $50 per user per year. A large implementation of Google Apps with 38,000 users is at Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada. In the same year Google Apps was launched, Google acquired Postini[118] and proceeded to integrate the company's security technologies into Google Apps[119] under the name Google Postini Services.[120]



Other products

Google Translate is a server-side machine translation service, which can translate between 35 different languages. Browser extensions allow for easy access to Google Translate from the browser. The software uses corpus linguistics techniques, where the program "learns" from professionally translated documents, specifically United Nations and European Parliament proceedings.[121] Furthermore, a "suggest a better translation" feature accompanies the translated text, allowing users to indicate where the current translation is incorrect or otherwise inferior to another translation.



Google launched its Google News service in 2002. The site proclaimed that the company had created a "highly unusual" site that "offers a news service compiled solely by computer algorithms without human intervention. Google employs no editors, managing editors, or executive editors."[122] The site hosted less licensed news content than Yahoo! News, and instead presented topically-selected links to news and opinion pieces along with reproductions of their headlines, story leads, and photographs.[123] The photographs are typically reduced to thumbnail size and placed next to headlines from other news sources on the same topic in order to minimize copyright infringement claims. Nevertheless, Agence France Presse sued Google for copyright infringement in federal court in the District of Columbia, a case which Google settled for an undisclosed amount in a pact that included a license of the full text of AFP articles for use on Google News.[124]



In 2006, Google made a bid to offer free wireless broadband access throughout the city of San Francisco in conjunction with Internet service provider Earthlink. Large telecommunications companies such as Comcast and Verizon opposed such efforts, claiming it was "unfair competition" and that cities would be violating their commitments to offer local monopolies to these companies. In his testimony before Congress on Net Neutrality in 2006, Google's Chief Internet Evangelist Vint Cerf blamed such tactics on the fact that nearly half of all consumers lack meaningful choice in broadband providers.[125] Google currently offers free wi-fi access in its hometown of Mountain View, California.[126]



One year later, reports surfaced that Google was planning the release of its own mobile phone, possibly a competitor to Apple's iPhone.[127][128][129] The project, called Android, turned out not to be a phone but an operating system for mobile devices, which Google acquired and then released as an open-source project under the Apache 2.0 license.[130] Google provides a software development kit for developers so applications can be created to be run on Android-based phone. In September 2008, T-Mobile released the G1, the first Android-based phone.[131] More than a year later on January 5, 2010, Google released an Android phone under its own company name called the Nexus One.[132]



Other projects Google has worked on include a new collaborative communication service, a web browser, and even a mobile operating system. The first of these was first announced on May 27, 2009. Google Wave was described as a product that helps users communicate and collaborate on the web. The service is Google's "email redesigned", with realtime editing, the ability to embed audio, video, and other media, and extensions that further enhance the communication experience. Google Wave was previously in a developer's preview, where interested users had to be invited to test the service, but was released to the general public on May 19, 2010, at Google's I/O keynote. On September 1, 2008, Google pre-announced the upcoming availability of Google Chrome, an open-source web browser,[133] which was then released on September 2, 2008. The next year, on 7 July 2009, Google announced Google Chrome OS, an open-source Linux-based operating system that includes only a web browser and is designed to log users into their Google account.[134][135]



Corporate affairs and culture



Google CEO Eric E. Schmidt with Sergey Brin and Larry Page (left to right)Google is known for having an informal corporate culture. On Fortune Magazine's list of best companies to work for, Google ranked first in 2007 and 2008[20][136] and fourth in 2009 and 2010.[137][138] Google's corporate philosophy embodies such casual principles as "you can make money without doing evil," "you can be serious without a suit," and "work should be challenging and the challenge should be fun."[139]



Employees

Google's stock performance following its IPO has enabled many early employees to be competitively compensated.[140] After the company's IPO, founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page and CEO Eric Schmidt requested that their base salary be cut to $1. Subsequent offers by the company to increase their salaries have been turned down, primarily because their primary compensation continues to come from returns stock in Google. Prior to 2004, Schmidt was making $250,000 per year, and Page and Brin each earned a salary of $150,000.[141]



In 2007 and through early 2008, Google has seen the departure of several top executives. In October 2007, former chief financial officer of YouTube Gideon Yu joined Facebook[142] along with Benjamin Ling, a high-ranking engineer.[143] In March 2008, Sheryl Sandburg, then vice-president of global online sales and operations, began her position as chief operating officer of Facebook[144] while Ash ElDifrawi, formerly head of brand advertising, left to become chief marketing officer of Netshops, an online retail company that was renamed Hayneedle in 2009.[145]



As a motivation technique, Google uses a policy often called Innovation Time Off, where Google engineers are encouraged to spend twenty percent of their work time on projects that interest them. Some of Google's newer services, such as Gmail, Google News, Orkut, and AdSense originated from these independent endeavors.[146] In a talk at Stanford University, Marissa Mayer, Google's Vice President of Search Products and User Experience, showed that half of all new product launches at the time had originated from the Innovation Time Off.[147]



Googleplex



The Googleplex, Google's original and largest corporate campusMain article: Googleplex

Google's headquarters in Mountain View, California is referred to as "the Googleplex", a play of words on the number googolplex and the headquarters itself being a complex of buildings. The lobby is decorated with a piano, lava lamps, old server clusters, and a projection of search queries on the wall. The hallways are full of exercise balls and bicycles. Each employee has access to the corporate recreation center. Recreational amenities are scattered throughout the campus and include a workout room with weights and rowing machines, locker rooms, washers and dryers, a massage room, assorted video games, foosball, a baby grand piano, a pool table, and ping pong. In addition to the rec room, there are snack rooms stocked with various foods and drinks.[148] In 2006, Google moved into 311,000 square feet (28,900 m2) of office space in New York City, at 111 Eighth Ave. in Manhattan.[149] The office was specially designed and built for Google, and it now houses its largest advertising sales team, which has been instrumental in securing large partnerships.[149] In 2003, they added an engineering staff in New York City, which has been responsible for more than 100 engineering projects, including Google Maps, Google Spreadsheets, and others. It is estimated that the building costs Google $10 million per year to rent and is similar in design and functionality to its Mountain View headquarters, including foosball, air hockey, and ping-pong tables, as well as a video game area. In November 2006, Google opened offices on Carnegie Mellon's campus in Pittsburgh.[150] By late 2006, Google also established a new headquarters for its AdWords division in Ann Arbor, Michigan.[151] Furthermore, Google has offices all around the world, and in the United States, including Atlanta, Austin, Boulder, San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington DC.





Google's NYC office building houses their largest advertising sales team.[149]Google is taking steps to ensure that their operations are environmentally sound. In October 2006, the company announced plans to install thousands of solar panels to provide up to 1.6 megawatts of electricity, enough to satisfy approximately 30% of the campus' energy needs.[152] The system will be the largest solar power system constructed on a U.S. corporate campus and one of the largest on any corporate site in the world.[152] In addition, Google announced in 2009 that it was deploying herds of goats to keep grassland around the Googleplex short, helping to prevent the threat from seasonal bush fires while also reducing the carbon footprint of mowing the extensive grounds.[153][154] The idea of trimming lawns using goats originated from R. J. Widlar, an engineer who worked for National Semiconductor.[155] Despite this, Google has faced accusations in Harper's Magazine of being extremely excessive with their energy usage, and were accused of employing their "Don't be evil" motto as well as their very public energy saving campaigns as means of trying to cover up or make up for the massive amounts of energy their servers actually require.[156]



Easter eggs and April Fool's Day jokes

Main article: Google's hoaxes

Google has a tradition of creating April Fool's Day jokes. For example, Google MentalPlex allegedly featured the use of mental power to search the web.[157] In 2007, Google announced a free Internet service called TiSP, or Toilet Internet Service Provider, where one obtained a connection by flushing one end of a fiber-optic cable down their toilet.[158] Also in 2007, Google's Gmail page displayed an announcement for Gmail Paper, allowing users to have email messages printed and shipped to them.[159] In 2010, Google jokingly changed its company name to Topeka in honor of Topeka, Kansas, whose mayor actually changed the city's name to Google for a short amount of time in an attempt to sway Google's decision in its new Google Fiber Project.[160][161]



In addition to April Fool's Day jokes, Google's services contain a number of Easter eggs. For instance, Google included the Swedish Chef's "Bork bork bork," Pig Latin, "Hacker" or leetspeak, Elmer Fudd, and Klingon as language selections for its search engine.[162] In addition, the search engine calculator provides the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything from Douglas Adams' The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.[163] Furthemore, when searching the word "recursion", the spell-checker's result for the properly spelled word is exactly the same word, creating a recursive link.[164] In Google Maps, searching for directions between places separated by large bodies of water, such as Los Angeles and Tokyo, results in instructions to "kayak across the Pacific Ocean." During FIFA World Cup 2010, search queries like 'world cup', 'fifa', etc. will cause the Goooo...gle page indicator at the bottom of every result page to read Goooo...al! instead.



Philanthropy

Main article: Google.org

In 2004, Google formed the not-for-profit philanthropic Google.org, with a start-up fund of $1 billion.[165] The mission of the organization is to create awareness about climate change, global public health, and global poverty. One of its first projects was to develop a viable plug-in hybrid electric vehicle that can attain 100 miles per gallon. Google hired Dr. Larry Brilliant as the program's executive director in 2004[166] and the current director is Megan Smith.[167]



In 2008 Google announced its "project 10100" which accepted ideas for how to help the community and then allowed Google users to vote on their favorites.[168]



Network neutrality

Google is a noted supporter of network neutrality. According to Google's Guide to Net Neutrality:



Network neutrality is the principle that Internet users should be in control of what content they view and what applications they use on the Internet. The Internet has operated according to this neutrality principle since its earliest days... Fundamentally, net neutrality is about equal access to the Internet. In our view, the broadband carriers should not be permitted to use their market power to discriminate against competing applications or content. Just as telephone companies are not permitted to tell consumers who they can call or what they can say, broadband carriers should not be allowed to use their market power to control activity online.[169]



On February 7, 2006, Vinton Cerf, a co-inventor of the Internet Protocol (IP), and current Vice President and "Chief Internet Evangelist" at Google, in testimony before Congress, said, "allowing broadband carriers to control what people see and do online would fundamentally undermine the principles that have made the Internet such a success."[170]



Criticism

Main article: Criticism of Google

Google has stated that its goal is "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful", but has faced criticism on a range of issues.[11] Areas of criticism have included copyright, privacy, and censorship. In 2003, The New York Times complained that Google's caching of content on their site infringed on their copyright for the content.[171] In this case, the United States District Court of Nevada ruled in favor of Google in Field v. Google and Parker v. Google.[172][173] The Authors Guild, a group that represents 8,000 U.S. authors, filed a class action suit in a Manhattan federal court against Google in 2005 over its scanning and copying of books through its Google Library program. Google replied that it is in compliance with all existing and historical applications of copyright laws regarding books.[174]



On December 2009, Google's CEO, Eric Schmidt, declared after privacy concerns: "If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place. If you really need that kind of privacy, the reality is that search engines — including Google — do retain this information for some time and it's important, for example, that we are all subject in the United States to the Patriot Act and it is possible that all that information could be made available to the authorities."[175] Privacy International ranked Google as "Hostile to Privacy", its lowest rating on their report, making Google the only company in the list to receive that ranking.[176][177]



The non-profit group Public Information Research launched Google Watch, a website advertised as "a look at Google's monopoly, algorithms, and privacy issues."[178][179] The site raised questions relating to Google's storage of cookies, which in 2007 had a life span of more than 32 years and incorporated a unique ID that enabled creation of a user data log.[180] Google Watch has also criticized Google's PageRank algorithms, saying that they discriminate against new websites and favor established sites,[181] and has made allegations about connections between Google and the NSA and the CIA.[182] Google's has also faced criticism with its release of Google Buzz, Google's version of social networking, where Gmail users had their contact lists automatically made public unless they opted out.[183]



Google has been criticized for its censorship of certain sites in specific countries and regions. Until March 2010, Google adhered to the Internet censorship policies of China, enforced by means of filters known colloquially as "The Great Firewall of China".[184]

Stephen Hawking

Stephen William Hawking was born on 8 January 1942 (300 years after the death of Galileo) in Oxford, England. His parents' house was in north London, but during the second world war, Oxford was considered a safer place to have babies. When he was eight, his family moved to St. Albans, a town about 20 miles north of London. At the age of eleven, Stephen went to St. Albans School and then on to University College, Oxford; his father's old college. Stephen wanted to study Mathematics, although his father would have preferred medicine. Mathematics was not available at University College, so he pursued Physics instead. After three years and not very much work, he was awarded a first class honours degree in Natural Science.

Stephen then went on to Cambridge to do research in Cosmology, there being no one working in that area in Oxford at the time. His supervisor was Denis Sciama, although he had hoped to get Fred Hoyle who was working in Cambridge. After gaining his Ph.D. he became first a Research Fellow and later on a Professorial Fellow at Gonville and Caius College. After leaving the Institute of Astronomy in 1973, Stephen came to the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics and since 1979, has held the post of Lucasian Professor of Mathematics. The chair was founded in 1663 with money left in the will of the Reverend Henry Lucas who had been the Member of Parliament for the University. It was first held by Isaac Barrow and then in 1669 by Isaac Newton.

Stephen Hawking has worked on the basic laws which govern the universe. With Roger Penrose he showed that Einstein's General Theory of Relativity implied space and time would have a beginning in the Big Bang and an end in black holes. These results indicated that it was necessary to unify General Relativity with Quantum Theory, the other great Scientific development of the first half of the 20th Century. One consequence of such a unification that he discovered was that black holes should not be completely black, but rather should emit radiation and eventually evaporate and disappear. Another conjecture is that the universe has no edge or boundary in imaginary time. This would imply that the way the universe began was completely determined by the laws of science.

His many publications include The Large Scale Structure of Spacetime with G F R Ellis, General Relativity: An Einstein Centenary Survey, with W Israel, and 300 Years of Gravity, with W Israel. Stephen Hawking has three popular books published; his best seller A Brief History of Time, Black Holes and Baby Universes and Other Essays, and most recently in 2001, The Universe in a Nutshell. There are .pdf and .ps versions of his full publication list.

Professor Hawking has twelve honorary degrees. He was awarded the CBE in 1982, and was made a Companion of Honour in 1989. He is the recipient of many awards, medals and prizes, is a Fellow of The Royal Society and a Member of the US National Academy of Sciences.

Stephen Hawking continues to combine family life (he has three children and one grandchild), and his research into theoretical physics together with an extensive programme of travel and public lectures.

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