Steve Lacey Is At Google Now

    October 25, 2006

One of the nicest developers I ever met at Microsoft, Steve Lacey, surprised me recently when he said he was working at Google. Great to see him today. He, like almost everyone at Google, refuses to tell me what he’s working on.

It’s gotta be cool, though. After all, he was an important developer on Flight Simulator. Why leave a job like that if you aren’t going to be working on something cool?

Oh, while we’re talking about Google, might as well talk about Kevin Laws’ rant over on VentureBeat: The Google Myth goes “pop.”

Kevin misses what Google is doing.

They are building moats around those two businesses that Google has proven successful.

By investing in everything else, Google’s search engine has gotten business defensibility. Microsoft and Yahoo have largely matched Google’s search quality. But they aren’t gonna steal search traffic (or, more importantly, advertising dollars) from Google because of the investment in other things.

Also, what gets rewarded by the stock market? Existing market share or growth?

Quick, who had most market share in 1977? IBM and DEC, right? Did that really matter? No.

What matters is how fast each service is growing.

I guarantee you that Google Talk doesn’t just have 44,000 users anymore. Those numbers are old. Makes for nice stories, but won’t hold up in the end.

He ends up wondering if Google can hold onto its workers. I predict that Google not only is holding onto its workers, but is getting a lot more out of each worker than most other companies.

I’ve never met such enthusiastic employees. Oh, and I did interview the chef today. He says he tells all his chef friends that he has the best job in the world. This company is – by far – the most interest to watch from a business perspective.

Part of the reason for that is they are breaking lots of rules.

And some of these weird experiments will pay off. Just stick around and see.



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Robert Scoble is the founder of the Scobleizer blog. He works as’s Vice President of Media Development.

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