AlyssaS - 2:10 am on Oct 13, 2011 (gmt 0)
^^^ Walkman, I was more agog about the stuff about Amazon than about Google, because all he was saying was that G was chaotic.
We've always known this. This is the reason we find them so puzzling - we keep looking for the unifying strategy and there isn't one! Each department seems to do their own thing and pursue their own visions.
Hell, even individual engineers feel free to post up their own vision for the company at midnight after a few glasses of merlot, as though they were Steve Jobs himself, and still live to tell the tale! If that Stevey guy was working for Bezos or Jobs he'd be looking for work today, but he survives and will probably produce another rant in a month's time.
Is the chaos in Google a strength or a weakness? It's hard to tell because we've never seen an operational experiment like the one they are conducting. In a sense the way they are organised is a massive risk.
They are doing some things well though. I get irritated with Facebook because at certain times of the day their platform slows to a crawl - so if you want to preview a draft note for example, it just seems to disappear and you have to wait five minutes till they've processed it and it's visible. The first time this happened to me I thought I'd lost my work and produced another one, and ended up with two versions. What a waste of time. I've never had this problem with G on any of their stuff, search, gmail, blogger, docs. People care about Time more than they care about anything else, so G is well ahead on the "lack of irritation" factor and the ability to process extremely large volumes of stuff smoothly.
Unlike Amazon, Microsoft and Facebook, they still have a lot of goodwill from Joe Public. And among webmasters, the disgruntled ones are neatly offset by the ones who are doing very well out of Google. Which means G has the space to continue their experiment for a good five years more.