Reflecting on Google’s Mistakes

3 Jan

At this time of year it is customary to take a quick glance at the past before dusting off our desks and moving forward.

For those of us working with technology and on the ‘Net this can be a scary moment.  Often we look back on projects that were started, tabled and left to die and piles of upgrades to software programs that were only recently installed. But alas we are not alone.

Since its launch in May 2005 Google has also looked back at projects tabled, opportunities missed and an endless stream of changes and upgrades to their service.  For example:

  1. Changing the original name of “Google Personalized Homepage” to “iGoogle” was turned down by co-founders Sergey Bin and Larry Page.
  2. The Google homepage changes its language for every country and sometimes the layout.  A layout reworked for China never made it live.
  3. According to the”World Wide Web ConsortiumGoogle does not uses invalid HTML which frustrates web masters trying to use Google gadgets on their sites. Only Google could get away with this.
  4. At one point a “Dilbert Google doodle” was incorporated into the Google logo.  When initially launched the doodle was considered too risqué and reworked.

Following Google‘s lead – our key to success in the next year will be to continue to make mistakes, to rework projects and to always look forward.


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