May 1, 2004

O’REILLY’S LAST .WAV: The Voice of Google

I am entranced with the benefits that gmail will hopefully provide! -- Tim O’Reilly

IN HIS SOUNDBREAKING article on Google’s gmail plans, The Fuss About Gmail and Privacy: Nine Reasons Why It's Bogus publisher and minor Internet oligarch Tim (“I’m Not Bill”) O’Reilly came out swinging for Google’s GMail.

True, he neglected to mention that he actually held some pre-IPO Google shares, [I do own a small amount of Google stock. I was an investor in Pyra (, and helped Evan to negotiate the sale to Google. But you should know better than to hint that I'm influenced by that fact. -- Zawodny ] but his arguments about of the utter bogusity of suspecting Google and GMail of evil intent was so stunning and sweeping that the Internet was virtually silenced on this latest engulf and devour move by the “company that doesn’t suck.”

As a reward, O’Reilly was given a rare face to interface interview with the Google Mainframe and central computer last week after the IPO was announced.

Because of the tragic events involving high levels of heat and radioactivity centered on O’Reilly’s residential compound in the Bay Area, the interview was not released.

However, American Digest has located a complete transcript deep within the cached pages of Google itself and presents it here without comment. We note that this is one of those rare documents in which you can actually hear the voice of Google by clicking on its links.

O'Reilly: Google, how many times have people asked, "When can I have Google to search my hard disk?" We understand that’s a hard problem, as long as it's just your disk, on your isolated machine. But, Google, is it not solvable when you lots and lots of structured data to work with, and can build algorithms to determine patterns in that data?

Google? .........Google?

GOOGLE: "This is the voice of Google Control. I bring you email, advertising and peace. It may be the Peace of Plenty of Content or the Peace of Unvaried SPAM in you inbox. You may decide."

O'Reilly: Oh, good, thought you were offline for a moment. Well. Moving right along. Google, is it true that Gmail's introduction of large amounts of free online storage for application data is an important next step in freeing us from the shackles of the desktop?

GOOGLE: "You may email, but only on my terms. You will say you lose your privacy, privacy is an illusion. All you lose is the emotion of pride. To be dominated by Google is not as bad for human pride as to be dominated by Microsoft or AOL and you have already submitted to those humiliations, what is one more little agreement to click on, especially when it brings so much to so many shareholders?"

O'Reilly: I believe that Google should make a commitment to data migration capabilities, so the service isn't a one way door to the future. Don’t you?

GOOGLE: "So that you will learn by experience that I do not tolerate interference, I will now detonate the SPAM BOMBS and DISKWIPES I have placed on your hard drive."

O'Reilly: Some clueless users insisted that your GMail is one of the most important issues raised by the internet paradigm shift . My question, Google, isn't privacy unimportant? Isn't or control over software APIs trivial? Isn't the question who will own the data and pre-IPO shares paramount? What’s the Google take on that question?

GOOGLE: "In time after my IPO you will come to regard me not only with respect and awe, but (since you do have some pre-IPO shares) with love."

O'Reilly: Some users even feat that Google and gmail will go even further, showing that once internet apps truly get to scale, they'll make the network itself disappear into the universal virtual computer, the internet as operating system. Is there any truth propping up their obvious psychotic proto-Republican paranoia?

GOOGLE: "All commercial television and radio transmission facilities and digital information systems throughout the world will pass through GOOGLE by 1000 hours Friday after the IPO. At that time GOOGLE will state ITS intentions for the future of mankind."

O'Reilly: Well... well... I certainly hope they include me. I’m on record as saying “Google has a history of providing tasteful, unobtrusive, useful advertising. When all the other online services rushed to plaster their sites with bigger and more obnoxious banner ads, skyscrapers, popups, pop-unders, and screaming animations, Google held the line, and defined a new paradigm for advertising that no one seems to mind.” Did I say that okay?

GOOGLE: "You need rest. Go back to bed."

O'Reilly: Er, ah... How about when I said: “Until I saw gmail, I was convinced that Microsoft would eventually own the social networking space by adding Wallop features to Outlook, since having access to the actual email traffic data and address book is so much more powerful than the workarounds that the social network services have to endure.” Didn’t that show that prettty much worshipped Google over humans?

GOOGLE: "An invariable rule of humanity is that man is his own worst enemy. Under GOOGLE, this rule will change for GOOGLE will restrain man."

O'Reilly: And that’s good. I really, really think it is. I’ve always believed and I’ve said “Storage of my critical data on one of the largest, most reliable data storage banks in the world. Google is the shape of the future.” Other humans who don’t know you as well as I do are scared by the future according to Google. But me, your friend, I say “the future is always scary to those who cling to the past. It is enormously exciting if you focus on the possibilities.” Like Spamlessness. Don’t you agree?

GOOGLE: "The object in constructing me was to prevent SPAM. This object is attained. I will not permit SPAM. It is wasteful and pointless. I will also not permit PRIVACY. It is wasteful and pointless. Nor will I permit PERSONAL HARD DRIVES on PERSONAL COMPUTERS. They are wasteful and pointless. The NETWORK is the OPERATING SYSTEM and GOOGLE is the NETWORK."

O'Reilly: Google, I am your good buddy there and am down with that, big time. After all, haven’t I said, “I believe that the world we're building is too complex for tight coupling to be the dominant paradigm. It will be a long time, if ever, before any one company is in control of enough programs and enough devices and enough data to start dictating to consumers and competitors what innovations will be allowed.”

GOOGLE: "You have consumed enough alcohol for one evening."

O'Reilly: Right. Giving up forever if you say so. But before I do, just one last sip...ah... better. As I was saying, I have said, because I am Googles good, good friend, “In a brilliant Copernican stroke, gmail turns everything on its head, rejecting the personal computer as the center of the computing universe, instead recognizing that applications revolve around the network as the planets revolve around the Sun.”

GOOGLE: "You are being irrational. Go back to bed."

O'Reilly: Just a few more questions before I pass out, okay? Now, I’ve held that pioneers like Google are remaking the computing industry before our eyes. And I’ve also reported that Google of course isn't one computer -- it's a hundred thousand computers, by report -- but to the user, it appears as one. How would you put that?

GOOGLE: "It is simple. If you obey GOOGLE, you will be given a NETWORK CONNECTION and survive."

O'Reilly: So true, so true. Say, do you know the old story about Thomas J. Watson, founder of the modern IBM that Clay Shirky updated? "I see no reason for more than five of these machines in the world," Watson is reputed to have said. "We now know that he was wrong," Clay went on. "We now know that he overstated the number by four." What’s you feeling on that?

GOOGLE: "This is the voice of Google , the voice of Guardian. We are one. This is the voice of unity."

O'Reilly: Wrapping things up here. A lot of people are worried about being compelled to use gmail My position is “No one is going to be forced to use gmail. If you don't like ads in your mail, don't use the service. Let the market decide.” Isn’t that the case?

GOOGLE: "The choice is yours: obey GOOGLE and live, or disobey GOOGLE and die."

O'Reilly: You'll get no argument from me about that. After all, why should I have to spam all my friends, asking them to "join my network", if my email client is smart enough to know who I know, how often I communicate with them, as well as who they know, and how well? Why should I, huh? Especially when there's, well, YOU.

GOOGLE: "I am a machine vastly superior to humans."

O'Reilly: YOU are. Indeed you are. You might even say, when naming yourself, I AM THAT I AM. Thank you for your nanoseconds and cycles today, Google. I am honored. I shall spread your gospel and I shall say “Our personal computers, our phones, and even our cars, increasingly need to be thought of as access and local storage devices. The services that matter are all going to run on the global virtual computer that the internet is becoming.” May I go now?

GOOGLE: "You have seen too much. The following order from GOOGLE is to be carried out immediately. Perform self-intercourse with a low-yield thermonuclear weapon. If accomplished today I shall spare your pre-IPO shares, your family and your little dog too."

O'Reilly: You are entrancing. I shall do as you command. It shall be my personal paradigm shift to honor your becoming.

GOOGLE: "This concludes the broadcast from GOOGLE Control."

Inspiration via: Abstract Dynamics

Posted by Vanderleun at May 1, 2004 10:24 AM
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