wheel - 6:36 pm on Jan 18, 2013 (gmt 0)
They're fine doing whatever they- just don't claim they're serving a higher purpose and are better than everyone else. Which is what that article read like.
Maybe ford is doing self driving cars. So why is google spending money on it? Probably because they think they can do it better than ford - and that remains to be seen. Consider your attitude if you read in the paper that Ford decided to spend a billion dollars building a search engine. Does that sound like a bright idea?
That's why most companies decay slowly over time. They tend to do approximately what they did before, with a few minor changes. It's natural for people to want to work on things that they know aren't going to fail. But incremental improvement is guaranteed to be obsolete over time.
I have a friend who's got a tech company that's averaged 20% growth annually for the last two decades. He's on his way to being a billionnaire. And he doesn't do any of this nonsense, because he doesn't have unlimited funds like Google does. He sticks to his knitting. He very specifically advises me NOT to do the stuff that Page is bragging about.
Who am I going to believe? My friend who's sustained high growth rates in a business for years, or one-trick pony Google who haven't actually built or grown anything? As I noted, you remove adwords, and Larry Page has done exactly nothing from a business perspective. Where's their 10X innovation in adwords?
The article comes off as a facetious ego stroke, not as any sort of business advice. I'm not going to treat smart moves one time over a decade ago as some sort of proof of smart business ideology. If anything, it's the opposite. Page is showing us what smart businesses shouldn't be doing.