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google PC

SPECULATE!

Speculation is mounting that Page will use a keynote speech at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on Friday to unveil details of a low-cost computer or internet-enabled device that will run on a new operating system developed by Google.
Permalink Kasey 
January 3rd, 2006
This is after Google unveiled their Microsoft Office killing web Office suite (not), and their purchase of Opera (not). Google is really making a killing in the land of fake news.

Speculation is just that - speculation. There is little logical reason why Google - largely an advertisement company - would want to get in the incredibly low yield computer business. Furthermore, just because Google (whose reputation is sinking fast from the ridiculously lofty levels it previously held) puts their name on a low-cost Linux PC doesn't make it any more palatable than the many that failed before it.
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
January 3rd, 2006
++Dennis.

Compared to almost any other tech company, Google has *immense* PR power, probably because journalists use it to do research and so they feel compelled to write about it.

So they can use this to their advantage by sending competitors off on a dumb wild goose chase. Or because they think it's amusing. Who knows.
Permalink Colm O'Connor 
January 3rd, 2006
The part that makes me think it's totally media-generated news is that some of the stories I've seen mention "Google's own OS" - not Linux. While it is conceivable that Google has written their own OS without a single leak, it's not likely.

Google-branded linux box for consumers is possible, but then you have to ask what they gain for all the effort, if they're already maintaining a good profit on selling ads no matter what OS you're running.

Philo [MSFT]
Permalink Philo 
January 3rd, 2006
I think that with Google Video testing the waters for mass storage and bandwidth, and Google Base... Google Office might not be so far out.
Permalink Mark Warner 
January 3rd, 2006
It's likely that all of these things are or have been at some point, personal projects of the 1-day-working-a-week kind.

Scenario:

1) Journalist hides outside Google headquarters.
2) Journalist finds somebody who looks sufficiently geeky and trails him.
3) Journalist offers to buy him coffee and asks him what he's working on.
4) The geek then waxes lyrical about his personal project for 5 hours.
5) Journalist goes home and writes up 'scoop'.
Permalink Colm O'Connor 
January 3rd, 2006
Google isn't quite as capable as people generally imagine them to be.

Google's desktop search is, for instance, somewhat of a dud in my opinion, beaten by competitors written by a couple of guys in their bedroom. Their IM is the same. The purchased Picasa has barely evolved at all from Google's original purchase. Google maps is a fairly simple web interface atop the acquired Keystone/navquest data (the problem with mapping has never been the interface - it's the data that is tightly held by a few).

Yet somehow people can completely believe that Google can spin out a glorious web interface Office app, or a whole operating system, without flinching.
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
January 3rd, 2006
That sounds like a lot of trouble, Colm. Or at least more trouble than simply manufacturing the "news", which is what a lot of the tech stories these days are. Given the concentrated herd power of Slashdot/Reddit/Digg, it's pretty easy to spin up something that will quickly yield hundreds of thousands of hits.

>thinking<

Trusthworthy, high-ranking sources inside of Microsoft have let me in on details of a shocking backroom deal being hammered out between Microsoft and Google. If appropriate concessions can be worked out, purportedly this deal will see the two companies merge sometime later this year (tentatively scheduled for July 17th, 2006), with the new organization retaining the title Microsoft, while all web properties and initiatives are marketed under the designation "Google - A Microsoft Company".

The Google division, to continue to be headquartered in Mountain View, California, will take over all web initiatives, including the Internet Explorer browser and MSN/Windows Messenger, as well as media and advertisements, and will further Bill Gates' internet paper initiative, while the Microsoft division will refocus their efforts on the operating system and fat clients.

As it stands, Eric Schmidt is earmarked for the CEO role of the combined organization, will Steve Ballmer will take on the CEO of the Windows Products division. Larry Page and Sergey Brin are taking on the CTO role, to be shared with Bill Gates.
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
January 3rd, 2006
(Stick a cleaned up version of that on your blog and submit it to all of the meme sites - enjoy! For extra legitimacy, decorate it with a lot of bizarrely over-precise facts, like that the room they're meeting in is a 9x13 windowless office, and that Ballmer is having his hand forced. Most people are a sucker for details, confusing level of detail with likelihood of truth)
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
January 3rd, 2006
My only thing Dennis, is why is Larry giving the keynote at the consumer electronics show? What does Google have to do with consumer electronics besides occasional cell phone functionality. I don't think they are making a PC, because thats a high cost, low profit industrym but I think they may bring out a little Google search appliance for the home or something.
Permalink Phil 
January 3rd, 2006
Google is a $140 billion dollar company - one of the largest companies around. Obviously Google has a tremendous influence on the marketplace. There are countless things he could be talking about, and it's quite a stretch to think that a Google PC is the only likely scenario.

In 2004 the keynote speakers was Sprint. I still don't see Sprint PCs at Walmart.
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
January 3rd, 2006
Dennis, if I hear a whiff of your "MS is buying Google" story internally I promise you'll be the first to know. [grin]

Philo
Permalink Philo 
January 3rd, 2006
Google hasn't written their OS, but they have hand-tweaked Linux to be more distributive computing friendly.

Which is precisely what every desktop neds.

Maybe Google is getting us to underwrite an @home type project by buying all the computers ourselves they would have purchased, and unbeknownst to us, it will form Skynet and take over the world.
Permalink MarkTAW 
January 3rd, 2006
A google distro of linux would be nice -- linux definitely needs a standard and Google would probably make the best one.
Permalink Colm O'Connor 
January 3rd, 2006
"There are countless things he could be talking about, and it's quite a stretch to think that a Google PC is the only likely scenario.

In 2004 the keynote speakers was Sprint. I still don't see Sprint PCs at Walmart."


OK, so what are some other likely scenarios? You are not saying much there except well, there are lots of things that could happen. SPECULATE!

Sprint obviously is very involved in cell phones which are a big CES item. Are you predicting Google Mobile? A cell phone with a google client in it? A version of google design to deliver content to smart phones -- maps, movie times, IM.
Permalink Kasey 
January 3rd, 2006
"In 2004 the keynote speakers was Sprint. I still don't see Sprint PCs at Walmart."

Sprint is personally responsible for selling millions of dollars in consumer electronics though. To use sprint you must buy a sprint phone (made by someone else). I wouldn't be surprised if the "google pc" is something that runs or interacts with Google but is made by a third party.
Permalink Phil 
January 3rd, 2006
The big problem with GSkynet (beta), of course, is that it will be ad-supported.

"I'll be back, with my Ford F250, capable of bursting through Police station walls at speeds up to 125mph!"

"Die, human! (this message brought to you by Cialis)"

"Hasta la Vista! Vacation in the Yucatan!"

etc.
Philo
Permalink Philo 
January 3rd, 2006
"OK, so what are some other likely scenarios? You are not saying much there except well, there are lots of things that could happen. SPECULATE!"

The Sprint keynote was basically "look at all the neat stuff you can do with cell phones" - the sort of pie-in-the-sky generalist advocacy which is supposed to be the role of a keynote. It isn't supposed to be the rolling out of some great new product.

From such a technology advocacy perspective, Google has a lot to talk about - How our world will change as bandwidth increases, the problems of identity, the new web world, etc. Expecting some AHA! moment from a CES keynote goes against all keynotes of the past.
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
January 3rd, 2006

This topic was orginally posted to the off-topic forum of the
Joel on Software discussion board.

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