History of Google

The Google company was officially launched in 1998 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin to market Google Search, which has become the most used web-based search engine. Page and Brin, students at Stanford University in California, developed a search algorithm at first known as "BackRub" in 1996. The search engine soon proved successful and the expanding company moved several times, finally settling at Mountain View in 2003. This marked a phase of rapid growth, with the company making its initial public offering in 2004 and quickly becoming one of the world's largest media companies. The company launched Google News in 2002, Gmail in 2004, Google Maps in 2005, Google Chrome in 2008, and the social network known as Google+ in 2011, in addition to many other products. In 2015, Google became the main subsidiary of the holding company Alphabet Inc.

The search engine went through numerous updates in attempts to combat search engine optimization abuse, provide dynamic updating of results, and make the indexing system rapid and flexible. Search results started to be personalized in 2005, and later Google Suggest autocompletion was introduced. From 2007, Universal Search provided all types of content, not just text content, in search results.

Google has engaged in partnerships with NASA, AOL, Sun Microsystems, News Corporation, Sky UK, and others. The company set up a charitable offshoot, Google.org, in 2005. Google was involved in a 2006 legal dispute in the US over a court order to disclose URLs and search strings, and has been the subject of tax avoidance investigations in the UK.

The name Google is a variant of googol, chosen to suggest very large numbers.

Early history

Google page brin
Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 2003
The first Google computer at Stanford
The first Google computer at Stanford was housed in custom-made enclosures constructed from Lego bricks.[1]


Google began in 1998 as a research project by Larry Page and Sergey Brin, both PhD students at Stanford University.[2]

In the search of a dissertation theme, Page had been considering among other things exploring the mathematical properties of the World Wide Web, understanding its link structure as a huge graph.[3] His supervisor, Terry Winograd, encouraged him to pick this idea (which Page later recalled as "the best advice I ever got"[4]) and Page focused on the problem of finding out which web pages link to a given page, based on the consideration that the number and nature of such backlinks was valuable information about that page (with the role of citations in academic publishing in mind).[3]

In his research project, nicknamed "BackRub", Page was soon joined by Brin, who was supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship.[5] Brin was already a close friend, whom Page had first met in the summer of 1995, when Page was part of a group of potential new students that Brin had volunteered to show around the campus.[3] Both Brin and Page were working on the Stanford Digital Library Project (SDLP). The SDLP's goal was "to develop the enabling technologies for a single, integrated and universal digital library" and it was funded through the National Science Foundation, among other federal agencies.[5][6][7][8]

Page's web crawler began exploring the web in March 1996, with Page's own Stanford home page serving as the only starting point.[3] To convert the backlink data that it gathered for a given web page into a measure of importance, Brin and Page developed the PageRank algorithm.[3] While analyzing BackRub's output which, for a given URL, consisted of a list of backlinks ranked by importance the pair realized that a search engine based on PageRank would produce better results than existing techniques (existing search engines at the time essentially ranked results according to how many times the search term appeared on a page).[3][9]

Convinced that the pages with the most links to them from other highly relevant Web pages must be the most relevant pages associated with the search, Page and Brin tested their thesis as part of their studies, and laid the foundation for their search engine.[10] The first version of Google was released in August 1996 on the Stanford website. It used nearly half of Stanford's entire network bandwidth.[11]

Some Rough Statistics (from August 29, 1996)

Total indexable HTML urls: 75.2306 Million

Total content downloaded: 207.022 gigabytes


BackRub is written in Java and Python and runs on several Sun Ultras and Intel Pentiums running Linux. The primary database is kept on a Sun Ultra II with 28GB of disk. Scott Hassan and Alan Steremberg have provided a great deal of very talented implementation help. Sergey Brin has also been very involved and deserves many thanks.

— Larry Page[12]

Late 1990s

Originally the search engine used Stanford's website with the domain google.stanford.edu. The domain google.com was registered on September 15, 1997. They formally incorporated their company, Google, on September 4, 1998 in their friend Susan Wojcicki's garage in Menlo Park, California. Wojcicki eventually became an executive at Google and is now the CEO at YouTube.

Both Brin and Page had been against using advertising pop-ups in a search engine, or an "advertising funded search engines" model, and they wrote a research paper in 1998 on the topic while still students. They changed their minds early on and allowed simple text ads.[13]

By the end of 1998, Google had an index of about 60 million pages.[14] The home page was still marked "BETA", but an article in Salon.com already argued that Google's search results were better than those of competitors like Hotbot or Excite.com, and praised it for being more technologically innovative than the overloaded portal sites (like Yahoo!, Excite.com, Lycos, Netscape's Netcenter, AOL.com, Go.com and MSN.com) which at that time, during the growing dot-com bubble, were seen as "the future of the Web", especially by stock market investors.[14]

In March 1999, the company moved into offices at 165 University Avenue in Palo Alto, home to several other noted Silicon Valley technology startups.[15] After quickly outgrowing two other sites, the company leased a complex of buildings in Mountain View at 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway from Silicon Graphics (SGI) in 2003.[16] The company has remained at this location ever since, and the complex has since become known as the Googleplex (a play on the word googolplex, a number that is equal to 1 followed by a googol of zeros). In 2006, Google bought the property from SGI for US$319 million.[17]


The Google search engine attracted a loyal following among the growing number of Internet users, who liked its simple design.[18] In 2000, Google began selling advertisements associated with search keywords.[2] The ads were text-based to maintain an uncluttered page design and to maximize page loading speed.[2] Keywords were sold based on a combination of price bid and click-throughs, with bidding starting at $.05 per click.[2] This model of selling keyword advertising was pioneered by Goto.com (later renamed Overture Services, before being acquired by Yahoo! and rebranded as Yahoo! Search Marketing).[19][20][21] While many of its dot-com rivals failed in the new Internet marketplace, Google quietly rose in stature while generating revenue.[2]

Google's declared code of conduct is "Don't be evil", a phrase which they went so far as to include in their prospectus (aka "S-1") for their 2004 IPO, noting that "We believe strongly that in the long term, we will be better served—as shareholders and in all other ways—by a company that does good things for the world even if we forgo some short term gains."[22] In 2008, Google launched Knol, their own equivalent of Wikipedia,[23] which failed four years later.[24]


In 2011, the company launched Google+, its fourth foray into social networking, following Google Buzz (launched 2010, retired in 2011), Google Friend Connect (launched 2008, retired by March 1, 2012), and Orkut (launched in 2004, retired in September 2014[25])

As of November 2014, Google operated over 70 offices in more than 41 countries.[26]

In 2015, Google reorganized its interests as a holding company, Alphabet Inc., with Google as its leading subsidiary. Google continued to serve as the umbrella for Alphabet's Internet interests.[27][28][29]

Financing and initial public offering

The first funding for Google as a company was secured in August 1998 in the form of a US$100,000 contribution from Andy Bechtolsheim, co-founder of Sun Microsystems, given to a corporation which did not yet exist.[30]

On June 7, 1999, a round of equity funding totalling $25 million was announced,[31] the major investors being rival venture capital firms Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Sequoia Capital.[30] While Google still needed more funding for their further expansion, Brin and Page were hesitant to take the company public, despite their financial issues. They were not ready to give up control over Google.

Following the closing of the $25 million financing round, Sequoia encouraged Brin and Page to hire a CEO. Brin and Page ultimately acquiesced and hired Eric Schmidt as Google's first CEO in March 2001.[32]

In October 2003, while discussing a possible initial public offering of shares (IPO), Microsoft approached the company about a possible partnership or merger.[33] The deal never materialized. In January 2004, Google announced the hiring of Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs Group to arrange an IPO. The IPO was projected to raise as much as $4 billion.

Google's initial public offering took place on August 19, 2004.[34] A total of 19,605,052 shares were offered at a price of $85 per share.[35] Of that, 14,142,135 (another mathematical reference as 2 ≈ 1.4142135) were floated by Google and 5,462,917 by selling stockholders. The sale raised US$1.67 billion, and gave Google a market capitalization of more than $23 billion.[36] Many of Google's employees became instant paper millionaires. Yahoo!, a competitor of Google, also benefited from the IPO because it owns 2.7 million shares of Google.[37]

The company was listed on the NASDAQ stock exchange under the ticker symbol GOOG. When Alphabet was created as Google's parent company, it retained Google's stock price history and ticker symbol.

Growth, 2003-2006

Google’s First Production Server
The first iteration of Google production servers was built with inexpensive hardware and was designed to be very fault-tolerant

In February 2003, Google acquired Pyra Labs, owner of the Blogger website. The acquisition secured the company's competitive ability to use information gleaned from blog postings to improve the speed and relevance of articles contained in a companion product to the search engine Google News.

In February 2004, Yahoo! dropped its partnership with Google, providing an independent search engine of its own. This cost Google some market share, yet Yahoo!'s move highlighted Google's own distinctiveness, and today the verb "to google" has entered a number of languages (first as a slang verb and now as a standard word), meaning "to perform a web search" (a possible indication of "Google" becoming a genericized trademark).

Google Baidu and Yahoo
the relationship between Google, Baidu, and Yahoo

After the IPO, Google's stock market capitalization rose greatly and the stock price more than quadrupled. On August 19, 2004, the number of shares outstanding was 172.85 million while the "free float" was 19.60 million (which makes 89% held by insiders). Google has a dual class stock structure in which each Class B share gets ten votes compared to each Class A share getting one. Page said in the prospectus that Google has "a dual class structure that is biased toward stability and independence and that requires investors to bet on the team, especially Sergey and me."

In June, 2005, Google was valued at nearly $52 billion, making it one of the world's biggest media companies by stock market value.[38]

On August 18, 2005 (one year after the initial IPO), Google announced that it would sell 14,159,265 (another mathematical reference as π ≈ 3.14159265) more shares of its stock to raise money. The move would double Google's cash stockpile to $7 billion. Google said it would use the money for "acquisitions of complementary businesses, technologies or other assets".[39]

On September 28, 2005, Google announced a long-term research partnership with NASA which would involve Google building a 1,000,000-square-foot (93,000 m2) R&D center at NASA's Ames Research Center, and on December 31, 2005 Time Warner's AOL unit and Google unveiled an expanded partnership—see Partnerships below.

Additionally in 2005, Google formed a partnership with Sun Microsystems to help share and distribute each other's technologies. As part of the partnership Google will hire employees to help in the open source office program OpenOffice.org.[40]

With Google's increased size came more competition from large mainstream technology companies. One such example is the rivalry between Microsoft and Google.[41] Microsoft had been touting its Bing search engine to counter Google's competitive position. Furthermore, the two companies are increasingly offering overlapping services, such as webmail (Gmail vs. Hotmail), search (both online and local desktop searching), and other applications (for example, Microsoft's Windows Live Local competes with Google Earth). In addition to an Internet Explorer replacement Google designed its own Linux-based operating system called Chrome OS to directly compete with Microsoft Windows. There were also rumors of a Google web browser, fueled much by the fact that Google was the owner of the domain name "gbrowser.com". These were later proven when Google released Google Chrome. This corporate feud boiled over into the courts when Kai-Fu Lee, a former vice-president of Microsoft, quit Microsoft to work for Google. Microsoft sued to stop his move by citing Lee's non-compete contract (he had access to much sensitive information regarding Microsoft's plans in China). Google and Microsoft reached a settlement out of court on December 22, 2005, the terms of which are confidential.[42]

Click fraud also became a growing problem for Google's business strategy. Google's CFO George Reyes said in a December 2004 investor conference that "something has to be done about this really, really quickly, because I think, potentially, it threatens our business model."[43]

While the company's primary market is in the web content arena, Google has experimented with other markets, such as radio and print publications. On January 17, 2006, Google announced that it had purchased the radio advertising company dMarc, which provides an automated system that allows companies to advertise on the radio.[44] Google also began an experiment in selling advertisements from its advertisers in offline newspapers and magazines, with select advertisements in the Chicago Sun-Times.[45]

During the third quarter 2005 Google Conference Call, Eric Schmidt said, "We don't do the same thing as everyone else does. And so if you try to predict our product strategy by simply saying well so and so has this and Google will do the same thing, it's almost always the wrong answer. We look at markets as they exist and we assume they are pretty well served by their existing players. We try to see new problems and new markets using the technology that others use and we build."

After months of speculation, Google was added to the Standard & Poor's 500 index (S&P 500) on March 31, 2006.[46] Google replaced Burlington Resources, a major oil producer based in Houston that had been acquired by ConocoPhillips.[47] The day after the announcement Google's share price rose by 7%.[48]

Updates and Evolution of Ranking System

Early Updates

In its infancy, very little was needed to fully optimize on page content in the eyes of Google.[49] With an inverse relationship between query position (in the HTML tag hierarchy) and weight, it simply boiled down to putting one's important keywords higher on the HTML tag hierarchy.[50] With this relatively simple algorithm in place, webmasters quickly discovered tricks to vastly boost their ranking in the SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages). One of the first instances of deceitful SEO came in the form of link keyword stuffing under on page content. As a response, Google removed these sites from its index, a practice it occasionally reverts to as a way of punishing disingenuous webmasters looking to cheat the system. The seemingly arbitrary changes to Googles PageRank algorithm however, led to both community outrage ("many declaring the "death of PageRank") and a noticeable decline in precision of search results.[51] Google was also constructing its index via a large monthly crawl. Not only did this lock search results to this one month window, it also meant that results would show stale content. An update dubbed "Everflux" introduced fresh crawling (daily crawls) to supplement the larger, primary crawl.[52] Daily crawling added another layer of relevancy (based upon date and time), to content ranking.[52] The inconsistencies of index versions across data centers during the early implementation of Everflux panicked webmasters, who saw their rankings fluctuate wildly from day to day.

Boston/Cassandra/Dominic (2003)

Google's "Boston" update in February 2003 saw major algorithmic changes and the promise of frequent index updates.[53] "Cassandra" marked a much more aggressive attack on shady SEO techniques like hidden and disguised keyword links, by emphasizing link quality[53] This was taken a step further in "Dominic", which sought to analyze the quality of all backlinks to prevent the then emerging practice of splogging (the practice of creating nonsensical offsite content to boost SERP of another site).[54] To combat practices like "Googlebombing" (putting irrelevant, often negative anchor text linking to popular websites) Dominic tinkered with the weighting of anchor text while stringently scrutinizing back links and internal linking.[55] An exploit where webmasters would link to the same site using different anchor text (thereby allowing both links to unfairly contribute to sites PageRank) was addressed by allowing only one site (given duplicate site links with differing anchor text) link to flow to PageRank.[56]

Fritz/Supplemental Index/Florida (2004)

Fritz finalized the "Everflux" implementation, meaning Google's index would receive some degree of updating every day.[53] Daily crawling added another layer of relevancy, (based upon date and time), to content ranking.[52] The creation of a supplemental index was designed to house content Google felt didn't quite fit in its main index (due either to a low PageRank or shady linking practices).[57] Storing some sites in a separate index that was to be searched only when no good match was found in the primary index, Google hoped would seamlessly filter out duplicate and untrustworthy content.[58] Questions about the efficacy of a multi-index system (particularly on improving recall) arose, and it remains unclear as to whether Google has retained this system.

Google's "Florida" update looked to be the proverbial "nail in the coffin" for SEO abusers. With Florida, context and relevancy were determined not just by the appearance of keywords, but of synonyms and supporting vocabulary throughout the page.[59] This sought to eliminate keyword and inbound anchor text dumping.[60] Features that had long been experimented on, like phrase proximity and keyword stemming, became official and users were now being penalized for overly using commercial/popular keywords.[59] With Florida coming down hard on SEO, many webmasters with commercial presences on the web took a drastic hit. The real estate community in particular, was hit hard by Florida's changes to Google rankings. In its attempt at wide spread reform, the quality of results took a hit and many site owners felt they took undeserved drops.

Personalized Search (2005)

To create seamless personalization of search (beyond manual filtering) Google began tapping into users browsing histories to deliver more relevant, personal results.[61] Promising to grow with the users browsing history, Personalized Search added a new dimension to search by incorporating past user behavior.[61] The implementation of personalized search was a blow to those relying on SEO techniques, as user browsing history was an element outside of their control.

XML Sitemaps (2005)

By allowing webmasters to create and submit XML files dictating URLs to be crawled as well as procedural information regarding how the page should be crawled, Google expanded the scope of its index.[62] Providing an additional method of organically increasing site exposure, Google hoped, would decrease the need for shady SEO practices.

Big Daddy (2005)

Big Daddy was less an algorithmic change as it was a change of Google's crawling and indexing infrastructure.[63] Pages with superfluous, reciprocal linking schemes and irrelevant outbound and inbound links would be demoted in the new crawler.[63] Whereas previous updates handled the issue of link reliability through algorithmic changes, links.[63]

Universal Search (2007)

In May 2007 Google implemented Universal search to its standard web results page.[64] Search results were now a compilation of all relevant results across all of Google's "vertical" search engines, (Google Images, Google Video etc.).[65] With the implementation of Universal Search, coverage of all types of content (not simply text) rose significantly. It now became important to optimize all forms of on-site content, not just on-site text content, increasing the complexity and breadth of SEO.

Google Suggest/Instant

Google Suggest marked the addition of real-time query suggestion. As users began to enter a query, a list of possible query matches would dynamically appear beneath the search bar, allowing for quicker and more accurate searches.[66] According to Google, only about 2% of all user queries were tracked and monitored, in an effort to better improve the service, quelling concerns over privacy.[66] The addition of instant suggestions added yet another dynamic to SEO, as webmasters now vied to associate their site with high ranking instant suggestion queries.[67]

Real Time Search (2009)

In December 2009, Google integrated real time search results to its main SERP. Newly indexed, relevant content from social media and news sources would be dynamically inserted into a user's SERP, thus providing "real time content."[68] Google also announced its desire to prioritize original, user driven social media over authoritative, corporate social media.[69] Additionally, a separate "updates" filter was added, allowing the user to receive all incoming content from social media, sports, and news sources.[68]

Caffeine (2010)

Google's Caffeine was the result of a complete overhaul of Google's indexing structure.[70] To accommodate for the explosion of new forms of content (video, real-time content, images) and growing user expectations, Google ditched its old linear system of indexing in favor of the more flexible Caffeine, capable of indexing thousands of pages in parallel.[70] Google would no longer execute lengthy crawls supplemented by smaller daily crawls, but instead dynamically add to its index whenever new information appeared.[70] Caffeine was reported to offer 50% fresher content than Google's previous index, and required around 100 million gigabytes of storage.[70]

JCPenney SEO Incident (2011)

In February 2011, the New York Times published an article titled "The Dirty Little Secrets of Search" detailing back link purchasing by the clothing retailer JCPenney.[71] By purchasing thousands of backlinks (often on unrelated sites), JCPenney dominated Google's SERP across many clothing related queries, and even queries specifying a brand (JCPenney topped Samsonite for the query "Samsonite carryon luggage").[71] Given Google's previous updates and their emphasis on backlink analysis, the JCPenney incident revealed that flaws still existed within the Google ranking algorithm. Google quickly demoted JCPenney's search position, crippling online sales.[71] Google has since lifted the demotion.


The name "Google" originated from a misspelling of "googol",[72][73] which refers to the number represented by a 1 followed by one-hundred zeros. Page and Brin write in their original paper on PageRank:[74] "We chose our systems name, Google, because it is a common spelling of googol, or 10100 and fits well with our goal of building very large-scale search engines."

There are uses of the name going back at least as far as the creation of the comic strip character Barney Google in 1919. British children's author Enid Blyton used the phrase "Google Bun" in The Magic Faraway Tree (published 1941) and The Folk of the Faraway Tree (published 1946),[75] and called a clown character "Google" in Circus Days Again (published 1942).[76] There is also the Googleplex Star Thinker from Douglas Adams' The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. In March 1996, a business called Groove Track Productions applied for a United States trademark for "Google" for various products including several categories of clothing, stuffed toys, board games, and candy. The firm abandoned its application in July 1997.[77]

Having found its way increasingly into everyday language, the verb "google" was added to the Merriam Webster Collegiate Dictionary and the Oxford English Dictionary in 2006, meaning "to use the Google search engine to obtain information on the Internet."[78][79] The use of the term itself reflects their mission to organize a seemingly infinite amount of information on the web.[73] In November 2009, the Global Language Monitor named "Google" No. 7 on its Top Words of the Decade list.[80] In December 2009 the BBC highlighted Google in their "Portrait of the Decade (Words)" series.[81] In May 2012, David Elliott filed a complaint against Google, Inc. claiming that Google's once distinctive mark GOOGLE® has become generic and lacks trademark significance due to its common use as a transitive verb. After losing to Google in UDRP proceedings involving many "Google-related" domain name registrations that he owns, Elliott later sought a declaratory judgment that his domain names are rightfully his, that they do not infringe any trademark rights Google may own, and that all Google's registered GOOGLE® marks should be cancelled since "Google" is now a common generic word worldwide that means "to search the Internet."[82]


In 2004, Google formed a non-profit philanthropic wing that gave all the details to the user with a non profit aim and determination unlike, Google.org, giving it a starting fund of $1 billion.[83] The express mission of the organization is to help with the issues of climate change (see also global warming), global public health, and global poverty. Among its first projects is to develop a viable plug-in hybrid electric vehicle that can attain 0.24 litre/10 km.[84]


Google has worked with several corporations, in order to improve production and services. On September 28, 2005, Google announced a long-term research partnership with NASA which would involve Google building a 1,000,000-square-foot (93,000 m2) R&D center at NASA's Ames Research Center. NASA and Google are planning to work together on a variety of areas, including large-scale data management, massively distributed computing, bio-info-nano convergence, and encouragement of the entrepreneurial space industry. The new building would also include labs, offices, and housing for Google engineers.[85] In October 2006, Google formed a partnership with Sun Microsystems to help share and distribute each other's technologies. As part of the partnership Google will hire employees to help the open source office program OpenOffice.org.[40]

Time Warner's AOL unit and Google unveiled an expanded partnership on December 21, 2005, including an enhanced global advertising partnership and a US$1 billion investment by Google for a 5% stake in AOL.[86] As part of the collaboration, Google plans to work with AOL on video search and offer AOL's premium-video service within Google Video. This did not allow users of Google Video to search for AOL's premium-video services. Display advertising throughout the Google network will also increase.

In August 2006, Google signed a $900 million offer with News Corp.'s Fox Interactive Media unit to provide search and advertising on MySpace and other News Corp. websites including IGN, AmericanIdol.com, Fox.com, and Rotten Tomatoes, although Fox Sports is not included as a deal already exists between News Corp. and MSN.[87][88]

On December 6, 2006, British Sky Broadcasting released details of a Sky and Google alliance.[89] This includes a feature where Gmail will link with Sky and host a mail service for Sky, incorporating the email domain "@sky.com".

In 2007, Google displaced America Online as a key partner and sponsor of the NORAD Tracks Santa program.[90][91][92] Google Earth was used for the first time to give visitors to the website the impression that they were following Santa Claus' progress in 3-D.[93] The program also made its presence known on YouTube in 2007 as part of its partnership with Google.[94]

In January 2009, Google announced a partnership with the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, allowing the Pope to have his own channel on YouTube.[95]

In January 2013, Google announced a partnership with Kia Motors and Hyundai. The partnership integrates Google Maps and Place into new car models to be released later in 2013.[96]

.mobi top-level domain (2007)

In coordination with several of the major corporations, including Microsoft, Nokia, LG, Samsung, and Ericsson, Google provided financial support in the launch of the .mobi top level domain created specifically for the mobile internet, stating that it is supporting the new domain extension to help set the standards that will define the future of mobile content and improve the experience of Google users.[97] In early 2006, Google launched Google.mobi, a mobile search portal offering several Google mobile products, including stripped-down versions of its applications and services for mobile users.[98] On September 17, 2007, Google launched "Adsense for Mobile", a service to its publishing partners providing the ability to monetize their mobile websites through the targeted placement of mobile text ads.[99] Also in September, Google acquired the mobile social networking site, Zingku.mobi to "provide people worldwide with direct access to Google applications, and ultimately the information they want and need, right from their mobile devices."[100]

Legal battles

Gonzales v. Google

On January 18, 2006, the U.S. Justice Department filed a motion to compel in United States district court in San Jose seeking a court order that would compel search engine company Google Inc. to turn over "a multi-stage random sample of one million URL's" from Google's database, and a computer file with "the text of each search string entered onto Google's search engine over a one-week period (absent any information identifying the person who entered such query)."[101] Google maintains that their policy has always been to assure its users' privacy and anonymity, and challenged the subpoena. On March 18, 2006, a federal judge ruled that while Google must surrender 50,000 random URLs, the Department of Justice did not meet the necessary burden to force Google to disclose any search terms entered by its users in Google.

Bedrock Computer Technologies, LLC vs. Google, Inc

A jury in Texas awarded Bedrock Computer Technologies $5 million in a patent lawsuit against Google.[102][103] The patent allegedly covered use of hash tables with garbage collection and separate chaining in the Red Hat Linux kernel. Google and Bedrock later settled the case and the judgment was vacated by the court.[104]

UK tax avoidance investigation

In November 2012, the UK government announced plans to investigate Google, along with Starbucks and Amazon.com, for possible tax avoidance.[105] On 20 January 2016, Google announced that it would pay £130m in back taxes to settle the investigation.[106] However, only 8 days later, it was announced that Google could end up paying more, and UK tax officials were under investigation for what has been termed a "sweetheart deal" for Google.[107]

See also


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Further reading

External links



was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar, the 1998th year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 998th year of the 2nd millennium, the 98th year of the 20th century, and the 9th year of the 1990s decade.

1998 was designated as the International Year of the Ocean.

Aston Villa 1–7 Arsenal (14 December 1935)

The 1935–36 season First Division match between Aston Villa and Arsenal at Villa Park took place on 14 December 1935. Arsenal won the fixture 7–1 with all of their seven goals scored by striker Ted Drake, a record haul for a top flight fixture, and a record for any division at the time. The top-flight record still stands today and is all the more notable due to Drake being on the away team and also carrying a knee injury at the time.

Censorship by Google

Censorship by Google is Google's removal or omission of information from its services or those of its subsidiary companies, such as YouTube, in order to comply with its company policies, legal demands, or various government censorship laws. Google's censorship varies between countries and their regulations, and ranges from advertisements to speeches. Over the years, the search engine's censorship policies and targets have also differed, and have been the source of internet censorship debates.Numerous governments have asked Google to censor what they publish. In 2012 Google ruled in favor of more than half of the requests they received via court orders and phone calls. This did not include China and Iran who block their site entirely.

Coverage of Google Street View

Google Street View was first introduced in the United States on May 25, 2007, and until November 26, 2008, featured camera icon markers, each representing at least one major city or area (such as a park), and usually the other nearby cities, towns, suburbs, and parks. Many areas that had coverage were represented by icons.


Google LLC is an American multinational technology company that specializes in Internet-related services and products, which include online advertising technologies, search engine, cloud computing, software, and hardware. It is considered one of the Big Four technology companies, alongside Amazon, Apple and Facebook.Google was founded in 1998 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin while they were Ph.D. students at Stanford University in California. Together they own about 14 percent of its shares and control 56 percent of the stockholder voting power through supervoting stock. They incorporated Google as a privately held company on September 4, 1998. An initial public offering (IPO) took place on August 19, 2004, and Google moved to its headquarters in Mountain View, California, nicknamed the Googleplex. In August 2015, Google announced plans to reorganize its various interests as a conglomerate called Alphabet Inc. Google is Alphabet's leading subsidiary and will continue to be the umbrella company for Alphabet's Internet interests. Sundar Pichai was appointed CEO of Google, replacing Larry Page who became the CEO of Alphabet.

The company's rapid growth since incorporation has triggered a chain of products, acquisitions, and partnerships beyond Google's core search engine (Google Search). It offers services designed for work and productivity (Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Slides), email (Gmail/Inbox), scheduling and time management (Google Calendar), cloud storage (Google Drive), social networking (Google+), instant messaging and video chat (Google Allo, Duo, Hangouts), language translation (Google Translate), mapping and navigation (Google Maps, Waze, Google Earth, Street View), video sharing (YouTube), note-taking (Google Keep), and photo organizing and editing (Google Photos). The company leads the development of the Android mobile operating system, the Google Chrome web browser, and Chrome OS, a lightweight operating system based on the Chrome browser. Google has moved increasingly into hardware; from 2010 to 2015, it partnered with major electronics manufacturers in the production of its Nexus devices, and it released multiple hardware products in October 2016, including the Google Pixel smartphone, Google Home smart speaker, Google Wifi mesh wireless router, and Google Daydream virtual reality headset. Google has also experimented with becoming an Internet carrier (Google Fiber, Project Fi, and Google Station).Google.com is the most visited website in the world. Several other Google services also figure in the top 100 most visited websites, including YouTube and Blogger. Google is the most valuable brand in the world as of 2017, but has received significant criticism involving issues such as privacy concerns, tax avoidance, antitrust, censorship, and search neutrality. Google's mission statement is "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful", and its unofficial slogan was "Don't be evil" until the phrase was removed from the company's code of conduct around May 2018.

Google Buzz

Google Buzz was a social networking, microblogging and messaging tool that was developed by Google and integrated into their web-based email program, Gmail. Users could share links, photos, videos, status messages and comments organized in "conversations" and visible in the user's inbox.On October 14, 2011, Google announced that it would discontinue the service and that the existing content would be available in read-only mode. Buzz was discontinued on December 15, 2011 and superseded by Google+.Buzz enabled users to choose to share publicly with the world or privately to a group of friends each time they posted. Picasa, Flickr, Google Latitude, Google Reader, Google Sidewiki, YouTube, Blogger, FriendFeed, identi.ca and Twitter were integrated. The creation of Buzz was seen by industry analysts as an attempt by Google to compete with social networking websites like Facebook and microblogging services like Twitter. Buzz also included several user interface elements from other Google products (e.g., Google Reader), such as the ability to "like" a post.

Google executive Sergey Brin said that by offering social communications, Buzz would help bridge the gap between work and leisure, but the service was strongly criticized when it was introduced for insufficient attention to users' privacy.

Google Chrome version history

Google Chrome is a freeware web browser developed by Google LLC. The development process is split into different "release channels", each working on a build in a separate stage of development. Chrome provides 4 channels: Stable, Beta, Dev, and Canary. On the stable builds, Chrome is updated every two to three weeks for minor releases and every six weeks for major releases.The following table summarizes the release history for the Google Chrome web browser.

Google Drive

Google Drive is a file storage and synchronization service developed by Google. Launched on April 24, 2012, Google Drive allows users to store files on their servers, synchronize files across devices, and share files. In addition to a website, Google Drive offers apps with offline capabilities for Windows and macOS computers, and Android and iOS smartphones and tablets. Google Drive encompasses Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides, an office suite that permits collaborative editing of documents, spreadsheets, presentations, drawings, forms, and more. Files created and edited through the office suite are saved in Google Drive.

Google Drive offers users with 15 gigabytes of free storage through Google One. Google One also offers 100 gigabytes, 200 gigabytes, 2 terabytes, 10 terabytes, 20 terabytes, and 30 terabytes offered through optional paid plans. Files uploaded can be up to 5 terabytes in size. Users can change privacy settings for individual files and folders, including enabling sharing with other users or making content public. On the website, users can search for an image by describing its visuals, and use natural language to find specific files, such as "find my budget spreadsheet from last December".

The website and Android app offer a Backups section to see what Android devices have data backed up to the service, and a completely overhauled computer app released in July 2017 allows for backing up specific folders on the user's computer. A Quick Access feature can intelligently predict the files users need.

Google Drive is a key component of G Suite, Google's monthly subscription offering for businesses and organizations. As part of select G Suite plans, Drive offers unlimited storage, advanced file audit reporting, enhanced administration controls, and greater collaboration tools for teams.

Following the launch of the service, Google Drive privacy policy was heavily criticized by some members of the media. Google has one set of Terms of Service and Privacy Policy agreements that cover all of its services, meaning that the language in the agreements grants the company broad rights to reproduce, use, and create derivative works from content stored on Google Drive. While the policies also confirm that users retain intellectual property rights, privacy advocates raised concerns that the licenses grant Google the rights to use the information and data to customize advertising and other services Google provides. In contrast, other members of the media noted that the agreements were no worse than those of competing cloud storage services, but that the competition uses "more artful language" in the agreements, and also stated that Google needs the rights in order to "move files around on its servers, cache your data, or make image thumbnails".

As of March 2017, Google Drive has 800 million active users, and as of September 2015, it has over one million organizational paying users. As of May 2017, there are over two trillion files stored on the service.

Google Maps

Google Maps is a web mapping service developed by Google. It offers satellite imagery, aerial photography, street maps, 360° panoramic views of streets (Street View), real-time traffic conditions (Google Traffic), and route planning for traveling by foot, car, bicycle and air (in beta), or public transportation.

Google Maps began as a C++ desktop program at Where 2 Technologies. In October 2004, the company was acquired by Google, which converted it into a web application. After additional acquisitions of a geospatial data visualization company and a realtime traffic analyzer, Google Maps was launched in February 2005. The service's front end utilizes JavaScript, XML, and Ajax. Google Maps offers an API that allows maps to be embedded on third-party websites, and offers a locator for urban businesses and other organizations in numerous countries around the world. Google Map Maker allowed users to collaboratively expand and update the service's mapping worldwide but was discontinued from March 2017. However, crowdsourced contributions to Google Maps were not discontinued as the company announced those features will be transferred to the Google Local Guides program.Google Maps' satellite view is a "top-down" or "birds eye" view; most of the high-resolution imagery of cities is aerial photography taken from aircraft flying at 800 to 1,500 feet (240 to 460 m), while most other imagery is from satellites. Much of the available satellite imagery is no more than three years old and is updated on a regular basis. Google Maps used a variant of the Mercator projection, and therefore cannot accurately show areas around the poles. However, in August 2018, the desktop version of Google Maps was updated to show a 3D globe.

The current redesigned version of the desktop application was made available in 2013, alongside the "classic" (pre-2013) version. Google Maps for Android and iOS devices was released in September 2008 and features GPS turn-by-turn navigation along with dedicated parking assistance features. In August 2013, it was determined to be the world's most popular app for smartphones, with over 54% of global smartphone owners using it at least once.In 2012, Google reported having over 7,100 employees and contractors directly working in mapping.

Google My Business

Google My Business is an Internet-based service for business owners and operated by Google. The network launched in June 2014 as a way of giving business owners more control of what shows in the search results when someone searches a given business name. Google allows business owners to verify their own business data via creating a new profile or claiming an existing auto-generated profile. The Google My Business listing appears in the Google Maps section of Google as well as the "Local Pack" for qualifying search queries.

Google Play Books

Google Play Books (formerly Google eBooks) is an ebook digital distribution service operated by Google. Users can purchase and download ebooks and audiobooks from Google Play, which offers over five million titles, with Google claiming it to be the "largest ebooks collection in the world". Books can be read on a dedicated Books section on the Google Play website, through the use of a mobile app available for Android and iOS, through the use of select e-readers that offer support for Adobe Digital Editions, through a web browser and reading via Google Home. Users may also upload up to 1,000 ebooks in the PDF or EPUB file formats. Google Play Books is available in 75 countries.

Google Play Books was launched in December 2010, with a reseller program letting independent booksellers sell Google ebooks on their websites for a cut of sales. It also launched an affiliate program in June 2011, allowing website owners to earn a commission by referring sales to the then-named Google eBookstore. However, the reseller program ended in April 2012, with Google stating that it had "not gained the traction that we hoped it would" and "not met the needs of many readers or booksellers". The affiliate program closed for new signups in February 2012, with Google announcing that it would scale down the initiative, making it private and invitation-only.

The mobile Android app has seen several significant updates since its introduction, including different reading modes with color contrasts, support for text highlighting and note-taking, a zoomed-out view with easy page sliding in an effort to improve reading experiences for books not read cover-to-cover, a vertical scrolling mode for comic books, a "Night Light" feature that gradually filters blue light to reduce eye strain after sunset, using machine learning imaging technologies to expand speech bubbles in comics, and listening to audiobooks.

Play Books store has been noted to hold a lot of pirated content, which led Google to discontinue new sign-ups to its publisher program in 2015. The program was reopened only in 2018 when it incorporated an automated process to decline books found to contain extensive text copied from other books already in the store.

Google Search

Google Search, also referred to as Google Web Search or simply Google, is a web search engine developed by Google LLC. It is the most used search engine on the World Wide Web across all platforms, with 92.74% market share as of October 2018, handling more than 3.5 billion searches each day.The order of search results returned by Google is based, in part, on a priority rank system called "PageRank". Google Search also provides many different options for customized search, using symbols to include, exclude, specify or require certain search behavior, and offers specialized interactive experiences, such as flight status and package tracking, weather forecasts, currency, unit and time conversions, word definitions, and more.

The main purpose of Google Search is to hunt for text in publicly accessible documents offered by web servers, as opposed to other data, such as images or data contained in databases. It was originally developed by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 1997. In June 2011, Google introduced "Google Voice Search" to search for spoken, rather than typed, words. In May 2012, Google introduced a Knowledge Graph semantic search feature in the U.S.

Analysis of the frequency of search terms may indicate economic, social and health trends. Data about the frequency of use of search terms on Google can be openly inquired via Google Trends and have been shown to correlate with flu outbreaks and unemployment levels, and provide the information faster than traditional reporting methods and surveys. As of mid-2016, Google's search engine has begun to rely on deep neural networks.Competitors of Google include Baidu and Soso.com in China; Naver.com and Daum.net in South Korea; Yandex in Russia; Seznam.cz in the Czech Republic; Yahoo in Japan, Taiwan and the US, as well as Bing and DuckDuckGo. Some smaller search engines offer facilities not available with Google, e.g. not storing any private or tracking information.

Within the US, as of July 2018, Microsoft Sites handled 24.2 percent of all search queries in the United States. During the same period of time, Oath (formerly known as Yahoo) had a search market share of 11.5 percent. Market leader Google generated 63.2 percent of all core search queries in the United States.

Google hacking

Google hacking, also named Google dorking, is a computer hacking technique that uses Google Search and other Google applications to find security holes in the configuration and computer code that websites use.

Google logo

The Google logo appears in numerous settings to identify the search engine company. Google has relied on several logos since its renaming (see History of Google), with the first logo created by Sergey Brin using GIMP. A revised logo debuted on September 1, 2015. The previous logo, with slight modifications between 1999 and 2013, was designed by Ruth Kedar, the wordmark was based on the Catull, an old style serif typeface designed by Gustav Jäger for the Berthold Type Foundry in 1982.The company also includes various modifications or humorous features, such as cartoon modifications of their logo for use on holidays, birthdays of famous people, and major events, such as the Olympics. These special logos, some designed by Dennis Hwang, have become known as Google Doodles.

List of After Words interviews first aired in 2006

After Words is an American television series on the C-SPAN2 network’s weekend programming schedule known as Book TV. The program is an hour-long talk show, each week featuring an interview with the author of a new nonfiction book. The program has no regular host. Instead, each author is paired with a guest host who is familiar with the author or the subject matter of their book.

List of Google products

The following is a list of products and services provided by Google.

Outline of Google

The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to Google:

Google – American multinational technology company specializing in Internet-related services and products that include online advertising technologies, search, cloud computing, software, and hardware.

Stanford Digital Library Project

The Stanford Digital Library Project (SDLP) (also called The Stanford Integrated Digital Library Project and The Stanford Digital Library Technologies Project) was a research program run by Hector Garcia-Molina, Terry Winograd, Dan Boneh, and Andreas Paepcke at Stanford University in the mid-1990s to 2004. The team also included librarians Rebecca Wesley and Vicky Reich. The primary goal of the SDLP project was to "provide an infrastructure that affords interoperability among heterogeneous, and autonomous digital library services." and described elsewhere as "to develop the enabling technologies for a single, integrated and "universal" library, proving uniform access to the large number of emerging networked information sources and collections."The SDLP is notable in the history of Google as a primary sources of funding for Lawrence Page and Sergey Brin (Brin was also supported by a NSF Graduate Research Fellowship) during the period they developed the precursors and initial versions of the Google search engine prior to the incorporation of Google as a private entity. It was also while at Stanford working under the SDLP that Lawrence Page filed his patent for PageRank.The SDLP itself was funded by coalition of federal agencies including the National Science Foundation as well as donations from industry sponsors.

Timeline of Google Search

Google Search, offered by Google, is the most widely used search engine on the World Wide Web as of 2014, with over three billion searches a day. This page covers key events in the history of Google's search service.

For a history of Google the company, including all of Google's products, acquisitions, and corporate changes, see the history of Google page.


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