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Google World

A program that explores the Google phenomenon.


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From Internet search, to Android, to cloud computing: how has Google come so far, so fast, and what are the broad implications of Google’s success? This program scrutinizes the Google phenomenon as it explores the company’s history, corporate culture, business practices, innovations, and altruistic ambitions.

Google’s controversial experience in China is examined as well, along with its move to create gigantic server farms to house, ultimately, all the world’s data. But as Google pursues its business and humanitarian goals, is social search technology under development by ex-Googlers taking aim at Google’s core proficiency? Commentary by CEO Eric Schmidt and Google enthusiasts is balanced by contrarian insights from information privacy advocates Marc Rotenberg, of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, and Chris Hoofnagle, of the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology.

Video Segments

1. Google: Internet Powerhouse Google's mission is to organize all the world's information and to make is accessible. Google handles one billion searches per day. Institutions that have access to user footprints can wield power over individuals.

2. Google's Motto Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin have the ultimate goal of making Google into an "all-knowing entity". Whenever Google expands, it is accompanied by disruption and upheaval. Google's motto is "Don't be evil".

3. Birth of Google Google is born in the Stanford University's Computer Science Department. The founders' creations are far superior to the AltaVista search engine. Page and Brin leave Stanford to start their own search engine business.

4. Expansion of Google Started in a garage, the Google company soon takes off. It moves into regular office space in downtown Palo Alto.

5. Google and Online Advertising Unlike other search engines, the Google homepage is clean and free of pop-up ads. The founders have no viable business plan to turn Google profitable. In October 2000, Google begins a new business in online advertising. A CEO is hired.

6. Google Goes Public The Google IPO receives more attention than any IPO in history. The company exposes its staggering large revenues and profits. On opening day, thousands of millionaires are created. Google founders become billionaires.

7. Google: Good to its Employees Employees of the "GooglePlex" are made to feel as if they are the best and brightest. They are provided with subsidized meals, free laundry, massage and spa privileges, and a barber on wheels.

8. Google: Company Characteristics Google is a paperless company. The company is constantly "on the prowl" for great technology. It can scoop up companies it is interested in. Google tends to see things from an engineering perspective.

9. Personal Computer and Google Cloud Computing The power of the personal computer changes everything when it is first made available. Today, it has lost its luster. Google works to eliminate the need for desktop computers. Cloud computing stores everything important in Google servers.

10. Google Data Farms Data centers require vast amounts of electricity to run servers and cool vast quantities of water used for refrigeration. Google comes to Lenoir, NC, to take advantage of former furniture plants. They do not reveal its full intentions.

11. Google in China China is an exploding market made complex by a censorious government. The Chinese government forces Google to block certain sites from its search results. Chinese youth dominate the number of Internet users.

12. Google and Patriot Act After 9/11, the U.S. government passes legislation giving it unprecedented access to individuals' digital footprints. It can access credit reports and more. Google offers cheaper, more secure, and more collaborative life in their "cloud."

13. Google's Employees Leave Google employs around 20,000 people worldwide. It is beginning to see some of its early hires leaving the company for "the next big thing". A new company wants to transform the nature of search itself. Facebook buys the start-up.

14. Google: Non-Social Networking Company Facebook and Twitter are currently the most popular social networks. They realize that friend-based research is far removed from Google's algorithms. Google did not jump into social networking. Google is based on trust.


Grade: 6-8, 9-12

Google World (DVD)
© 2010
Time: 48 Minutes

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