Is Google God?
Since 9/11 the world has felt increasingly fragmented. Reading the papers, one senses that many Americans are emotionally withdrawing from the world and that the world is drifting away from America. The powerful sense of integration that the go-go-globalizing 1990’s created, the sense that the world was shrinking from a size medium to a size small, feels over now. The reality, though, is quite different. While you were sleeping after 9/11, not only has the process of technological integration continued, it has actually intensified — and this will have profound implications. I recently went out to Silicon Valley to visit the offices of Google, the world’s most popular search engine. It is a mind-bending experience. You can actually sit in front of a monitor and watch a sample of everything that everyone in the world is searching for. (Hint: sex, God, jobs and, oh my word, professional wrestling usually top the lists.)In the past three years, Google has gone from processing 100 million searches per day to over 200 million searches per day. And get this: only one-third come from inside the U.S. The rest are in 88 other languages. “The rate of the adoption of the Internet in all its forms is increasing, not decreasing,” says Eric Schmidt, Google’s C.E.O. “The fact that many [Internet companies] are in a terrible state does not correlate with users not using their products.” Full Story