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7 Things You Never Knew About Google

With Google poised to take over the world… or at least an ever increasing portion of the Internet, I thought it an opportune time to get to know the company a little better.  We all know the names Steve Jobs (Apple), Bill Gates (Microsoft) and Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook), but can you name the founder of Google?  How about the year it launched?  Here are a few quick facts about Google:

  • Google was founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin back in 1998 as a Ph.D. research project at Stanford University.
  • The name Google was adapted from the word googol, which is the name for the number 10100. According to the original Google beta website, this name was chosen because, “our goal is to make huge quantities of information available to everyone. And it sounds cool and has only six letters.”
  • The original Google storage assembly from 1996 was made of LEGOs! It held 40 GB of data, less than one dual layer Blu-Ray disc can hold today.  Good things the LEGOs are so easy to expand! Today Google has ten data centers around the world and they have announced plans to build several more.
  • Gmail (Google’s free email service) was used by Google employees internally for nearly two years prior to public launch. PC World ranked it number two in the “100 Best Products of 2005”, after the web browser Mozilla Firefox. There are now over 62.7 million Gmail users.
  • In November 2011, Google’s web browser Chrome 15 overtook Internet Explorer 8 as the world’s most popular web browser.  If you combine all currently available versions of browsers, IE is still the most popular, but Chrome is estimated to overtake that as well, sometime this year.
  • Google Plus, Google’s social network, was launched June 28, 2011, and gained 25 million users in its first month.  For comparison, it took Twitter two and a half years and Facebook about three years to attract 25 million visitors.  Today, Google Plus is already up to approximately 60 million. (I am one of them.  Search “Monica Spilman” and add me to your circles if you are too!)
  • Last month, Google integrated Google Plus and their search engine.  In essence this makes your search results more personal and, in theory, more relevant because it will actually return things that those in your circles have posted, shared or “+1ed” (Google’s version of “liking”).  Google is once again redefining how we search.

Since day one, back in 1998, Google’s official mission statement has been “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful”. This is fine by me, just as long as they abide by their unofficial slogan, “Don’t be evil”!

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