- Gebundene Ausgabe: 432 Seiten
- Verlag: Simon & Schuster (12. April 2011)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 1416596585
- ISBN-13: 978-1416596585
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 15,5 x 3,3 x 23,5 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 2 Kundenrezensionen
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 80.239 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
In The Plex: How Google Thinks, Works, and Shapes Our Lives (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 12. April 2011
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"Levy is America’s premier technology journalist. . . . He has produced the most interesting book ever written about Google. He makes the biggest intellectual challenges of computer science seem endlessly fun and fascinating. . . . We can expect many more books about Google. But few will deliver the lively, idea-based journalism of In the Plex.”
—Siva Vaidhyanathan, The Washington Post
"Almost nothing can stop a remarkable idea executed well at the right time, as Steven Levy's brisk-but-detailed history of Google, In the Plex, convincingly proves. . . . makes obsolete previous books on the company."
—Jack Shafer, The San Francisco Chronicle
"The rise of Google is an engrossing story, and nobody's ever related it in such depth."
—Hiawatha Bray, The Boston Globe
"Dense, driven examination of the pioneering search engine that changed the face of the Internet.
Thoroughly versed in technology reporting, Wired senior writer Levy deliberates at great length about online behemoth Google and creatively documents the company’s genesis from a 'feisty start-up to a market-dominating giant.' The author capably describes Google’s founders, Stanford grads Larry Page and Sergey Brin, as sharp, user-focused and steadfastly intent on 'organizing all the world’s information.' Levy traces how Google’s intricately developed, intrepid beginnings and gradual ascent over a competitive marketplace birthed an advertising-fueled 'money machine' (especially following its IPO in 2004), and he follows the expansion and operation of the company’s liberal work campus ('Googleplex') and its distinctively selective hiring process (Page still signs off on every new hire). The author was afforded an opportunity to observe the company’s operations, development, culture and advertising model from within the infrastructure for two years with full managerial cooperation. From there, he performed hundreds of interviews with past and current employees and discovered the type of 'creative disorganization' that can either make or break a business. Though clearly in awe of Google’s crowning significance, Levy evenhandedly notes the company’s more glaring deficiencies, like the 2004 cyber-attack that forced the removal of the search engine from mainland China, a decision vehemently unsupported by co-founder Brin. Though the author offers plenty of well-known information, it’s his catbird-seat vantage point that really gets to the good stuff.
Outstanding reportage delivered in the upbeat, informative fashion for which Levy is well known."
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"An instructive primer on how the minds behind the world's most influential internet company function."
—Richard Waters, The Wall Street Journal
"[Steven Levy] spent much of the past three years playing anthropologist at one of the Internet's most interesting villages and set of inhabitants -- the Googleplex and the tribue of Googlers who inhabit it. . . . A deep dive into Google's culture, history and technology."
--Mike Swift, San Jose Mercury News
"The wizards of Silicon Valley often hype their hardware/software breakthroughs as 'magical' for the products' ability to pull off dazzling stunts in the blink of an eye. And true to the magicians' code, these tech talents rarely let mere mortals peer behind the curtains. . . . That's what makes Levy's just-out tome so valuable."
—Jonathan Takiff, The Philadelphia Daily News
"The most comprehensive, intelligent and readable analysis of Google to date. Levy is particularly good on how those behind Google think and work. . . . What's more, his lucid introductions to Google's core technologies - the search engine and the company's data centres - are written in non-geek English and are rich with anecdotes and analysis. . . . In The Plex teems with original insight into Google's most controversial affairs."
—Andrew Keen, New Scientist
"Steven Levy's new account [of Google], In the Plex, is the most authoritative to date and in many ways the most entertaining."
—James Gleick, The New York Review of Books
Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende
Steven Levy is a senior writer at Wired, and was formerly senior editor and chief technology correspondent for Newsweek. He is the author of several books, including Hackers, Insanely Great, and The Perfect Thing. A native of Philadelphia, Levy lives in New York City with his wife, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author Teresa Carpenter, and their son. Visit him at StevenLevy.com.Alle Produktbeschreibungen
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In the minds of its founders and most of the early employees, Google is first and foremost a technology company. The business model of online advertising came about almost as an afterthought, and one continuously gets the sense that its purpose is to pay the bills so that Google geeks can have a free reign in pursuing their latest techie interest. This attitude is an integral part of Google's DNA, and any book that aims to provide the reader with a better sense of what Google is all about needs to get this point across. Unfortunately, there have been several books in recent years that were more concerned with all the intangible aspects of life in the age of Google and had almost completely missed this point. "In The Plex," I am happy to say, did not fall in that trap. Steven Levy comes across as an extremely competent and well-informed technology journalist who clearly relishes the opportunity to write about all the intricacies of Google's engineering prowess. In this respect as well, this is a quintessentially Google book. If Google were a person, this is probably what its autobiography would look like. Levy, who currently works for Wired magazine, literally embedded himself deep within Google and over the course of two years or so interviewed hundreds of Google employees. The result is a very comprehensive book on almost all aspects of Google's technology and business.
The book is very informative, probably more so than all the other books on Google out there combined. Even some of the already widely familiar stories about Google's origins and early years have been given new details. The book is also remarkable in that it provides a lot of information on some very specific technical details and innovation that Google has accomplished over the years. Granted, much of it is many years, or even over a decade, old, but for the longest time Google has been extremely cagey about revealing any of that information to the wider audience. The fact that most of the information in this book has been obtained directly from Googlers, including the notoriously secretive founding duo, may signal that Google has come to the point where it has become confident in its own strength and comfortable with the idea that revealing certain information about itself will not jeopardize its business model.
I relished the opportunity to find out more about some of the Google's early "magical" features and projects. For instance, even though I had been relying on it for years, I finally understand how Google's famous spell-checker works. The reader can also learn more about the early days of Google's book scanning technology, the development of its massive data centers, the rise and fall of Google video, and several other Google projects and initiatives that have been undertaken over the years. All the stories are to the point and are not laden with techie jargon.
The part of the book that I liked the most was the one that dealt with Google's abortive efforts to gain a foothold in China. China's government is notorious for its online censorship and the very restrictive measures that it used when dealing with foreign companies on its soil. Nonetheless, it was very hard for Google to forgo the world's second largest economy (third at the time) and the world's most populous nation with well over billion and a half of inhabitants. Google tried to compromise and work out some sort of rapprochement with the Chinese government, but this attitude was so antithetical to almost all of Google's core beliefs and business practices, that it was doomed from the get-go. One person that was particularly uncomfortable with the whole situation was Sergey Brin, who immigrated with his family to the United States from Soviet Union when he was just six years old. His family's experience with totalitarian regime shaped his thinking, and it proved decisive in the long run. What finally triggered Google's pullout from China was a Chinese government's hacking into Google Chine's servers and accessing of some highly classified information. The showdown with China reads almost like a spy thriller, and it highlights all the complex interconnections between business, technology, policy and politics that will dominate life in the twenty-first century.
This book's laser-like focus on Google is actually one of its weaknesses. Many of Google's main rivals are mentioned, but mostly just in passing. There is also very little discussion of Google within the larger online economy. All of this has an effect that it is sometimes hard to put many of the interesting facts and stories in this book within a larger context. Another one of the book's weaknesses is the lack of critical assessment and analysis of various products, projects, policy decisions, and inevitable failures. The author appears a bit too eager to present Google's version; any criticism remains of the mildest variety. One gets a sense that this book was thoroughly vetted by Google's PR department. I guess that is the price one has to pay for having unprecedented access to Google's own internal information. However, for the most part it was worth it.
One thing that did surprise me with this book was the very limited attention that it gave to some of the most headline-grabbing issues that currently grip Google: Android OS and social networking. Android is mentioned in one of the earlier chapters, but only in terms of its early development and the fallout that it engendered with Google's relations with Apple. Since those early days Android has become a major player in its own right, a very viable alternative to iPhone, and very likely the dominant mobile operating system in the near future. And as was hinted at one point in the book, it also brings in very healthy revenue. Social networking fares even worse than Android. It has been relegated to the epilogue, even though companies like Facebook and Twitter are threatening the very model of the web that is at the core of all of Google's services.
This is by far the most thorough and informative book on Google that is currently available. If you are interested in learning more about Google and are going to use just one source then this book should be it. It is well written, interesting, and free of puff pieces. It has a few shortcomings, but overall they are insignificant compared to the amount of material that one can glean from it.
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Since Google is a company of the internet age there were areas where I skimmed, thinking that I knew all about this. More interesting to me was the behind the scenes information. It was interesting to see how the the viewpoints of senior Googlers differed from the common interpretation of their actions.
The section on China was particularly revealing with lots of description of the friction and disagreements within Google itself about whether to engage with China and when to pull out.
Another bit of particular interest to me was comparing the struggle that Google had once it became an established tech giant and the struggles the Obama administration had.
In both cases idealism and a certain naivety came into hard conflict with entrenched interests. And both groups discovered that while the facts are indeed the facts. The facts won't stop people from misinterpreting everything you do and seeing the worst in you.
I've always had a soft spot for Google and tend to think that at lot of the criticisms levied against them are rather ignorant or fail to recognize the realities of the world. This book reinforced that belief.
It is a bit of a dry read. Perhaps because the people are secondary to the company in the story of Google. It took me a while to read because I found it easier to dip in and out than to read whole chapters at a time. But it is fact with insight.
Many have heard about what makes Google tick but this book take your behind the scenes from day one and reveals what makes the place tick. It demonstrates how Google is really an extension of the personalities of Sergey and Larry. Reading the book helps you to better understand why Google does the things that it does and its whole approach to business. This is extremely beneficial given that fact that most people use a Google product every day.
The book is well written, easy to read and very entertaining as it takes you through the history of Google, dwelling on the major moments and products that have made it the colossus that it is today. It is very interesting to see how major products like Gmail grew from extreme small, almost hobby like projects into the features of mass culture they are today.
Most importantly of all it it gives you fantastic insight into the way Google thinks, how it make decisions and most importantly what it sees its mission in the world. As they say, knowing is understanding and with this book you'll certainly be more knowledgeable about what makes Google tick.
I love Google. I love their products, like Search, Gmail, Maps, Reader, and YouTube. In this book I got a lot of info (or gossips, depending how you define this small things) about the company.
The Chapter Six is unsurprisingly interesting to Chinese Google users. Not long after release of this book, tons of blog posts, illegal translations are flooding my RSS reader. This is phenomenal. And it haven't happened for a long time. The big heads - Tech Crunch, Business Insider and Mashable - also have at least one post on the book. They also reminded me to purchase a copy to fill my little monster of curiosity.
So this is it. I paid $12.99 to get a copy. Thanks to Amazon's kindle reader. I can get hands on the book in less than five minutes. If I place an order to a printed copy, I have to wait, like two weeks.
In my opinion, all the interesting gossips in this book have been leaked by the bloggers. Nothing more. Google has a hiding strategy. They have a lot stories hidden, which should be publicly known. That's why we have to buy a history book on Google. As Steven Levy wrote on Quora, this book has approved by Larry Page, Sergey Brin and Eric Schmidt. Google even gave Steven a unprecedented access.
But some engineers think Google is no longer cool. A few left the company from Mountain View to Palo Alto. The most shocking big one is Sheryl Sandberg, who was a key person for Google ad division. She left Google for Facebook in March of 2008. It is hard to say Facebook is the future of internet, or social network will kill search engine. Yet, you know what I mean :)
In any aspect, Google is a great company. Without help from Google, I couldn't have learned Python script in a short time (higher productivity on daily basis), or enjoy the fantastic map service, read free ebook in public domain, maybe still using a offline RSS reader, and $300 revenue from AdSense...
Yet Google made strange decision facing evil and dark power. In my understanding of two co-founders, they should haven't make such a decision (to enter China market and quit). I don't have an answer even carefully read the Chapter Six. Maybe it's a result to satisfy everyone(?). Eric Schmidt said they had 5000 years patience. Yet they quitted in five years.
So let it be. Google should haven't been here.
However, this is the best book on Google by now. If you are interested in small stories on Google, buy one now.
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