1-28-12 Hodgepodge

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Facebook Junior

Google CEO Larry Page has evidently decided that he is not running a search company, but a social network.

Now, a source tells us that CEO Larry Page, who seems to be hell-bent on competing with Mark Zuckerberg whether it's the right thing for Google or not, had this to say to employees at a Friday staff event after the Search Plus Your World launch: "This is the path we're headed down -- a single unified, 'beautiful' product across everything. If you don't get that, then you should probably work somewhere else."
Perhaps there's more money to be made that way, but, as Sarah Lacy indicates, this is money from a completely different kind of customer -- unless Google makes it easy to not use its (soon-to-be former?) products as mere features of a "new Facebook".
[T]hat's very different from the Google of the mid-2000s. This was a company that agonized over adding even a single additional word to the stark white homepage, lest it detract from the search box and the core mission of the site to provide the most relevant results. 
As a customer who, if he wanted Facebook would already have an account there, I certainly "get that": I see that I need to watch these developments closely and perhaps become prepared to go elsewhere for what I actually want from Google.

Weekend Reading

"Verbal assaults by anti-capitalists like Gingrich, Perry and Santorum rely not only on Marxist and Christian prejudices against money-making but also on populism..." -- Richard Salsman, in "Mitt Romney's Uphill Battle Against Anti-Capitalist Conservatives" at Forbes

"To think that genuine criminals reform themselves is largely a fantasy borne of ignorance about how these kinds of people actually think." -- Michael Hurd, in "Some Minds Are Beyond Help" at DrHurd.com

"[R]ent controls have never worked: they create shortages and decrease the quality of housing." -- Michael Berliner, in "Why Rent Control Is Immoral" at The Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights

"... I maintain that I'm a trader when I'm wrong and an investor when I'm right, ..." -- Jonathan Hoenig, in "Distinguishing Trades from Investments" at SmartMoney

My Two Cents

I am hardly a fan of Mitt Romney, but have to agree with Richard Salsman that his status as anti-capitalist lightning rod is very revealing of the rest of the GOP presidential field. Were he only equal to the task of taking advantage of the opportunities the other candidates are giving him (and Barack Obama will give him), this election would, alone, present the public with a much-needed dose of clarity about capitalism and the proper scope of government.

Living off Craigslist

A man from Portland, Oregon has turned buying and selling things through Craigslist into a full time job. The whole thing is interesting, but I like the fact that he even manages to be a sort of traveling saleman.
In addition to being able to support my family, this job has a flexible schedule and I really can do it anywhere there is a Craigslist. I can even work when I’m on vacation in places like Hawaii (where I am right now). I also love the thrill of the hunt!
It's as if he has delegated storing an inventory to the local Craigslist users wherever he happens to be!

-- CAV


Today: Clarified a sentence in first section. 

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