I've been wanting to write about my google mania for a while. Ever since the year 2000, when I was (kinda pretending to be) studying Biochemistry in Edinburgh Uni and was plugged the search engine there by teachers, other staff and students alike, I've been using it and its services more and more. And more.
I now use everything from Google Documents to Picasa to quickly check (and sometimes share) my documents, awesome services like Google Maps to Google Calendar to get along my otherwise hectic life, gMail and Google Reader I dutifully check every morning when I wake up and every night before I go to bed, and both YouTube and Blogger, those major late-'00s-social-crazes which I'm obviously party to, belong to them too. Google Product Search (formerly known as Froogle) and Google Scholar I rarely use, but I really respect as well for what they are and for what they offer.
This gives rise to all sorts of debates, which I'm sure most of you often get caught up in, involving the fact that, hey, those guys own most of our daily lives and the personal information that goes with it, and most of us not only give them free reign over it, but we frackin' thank them for it. So, if they were actually 'evil', they would have us all by the short-and-curlies, at this point. All they would have to do is use the information they have, and they would pretty much take over the world, in an oh-so-subversive fashion!
So, then, why is it that I don't care? Why is it that, although I do recognize their power and all, I still don't mind handing it over to them in every occasion when they offer something that makes my life easier or more organized? This article kind of gave me an answer for that, which I read as an equivalent to it being OK for Microsoft to have an OS monopoly [until linux manages to bring out a totally user-friendly distro, that even Adobe products and games will come out for, and Larry Lessig doen't need to bring out all those lectures any more, and we all live in a pretty little world where ice cream flows free in rivers].
You see, I really don't think Google's off to take over the world: why would they want to? It would be too much of a hassle anyway! It's just, I find, that some weird survival thang tells us to be afraid of anything that has too much power gathered around it, and automatically fear it and assume it's bad and that its intentions are to hurt us in some way. A conspiracy with good intentions, you say? What's that? (Hitleriffic!)