What Would Google Do? : Reverse-Engineering the Fastest Growing Company in the History of the World
A bold and vital book that asks and answers the most urgent question of today: What Would Google Do?
In a book that's one part prophecy, one part thought experiment, one part manifesto, and one part survival manual, internet impresario and blogging pioneer Jeff Jarvis reverse-engineers Google--the fastest-growing company in history--to discover forty clear and straightforward rules to manage and live by. At the same time, he illuminates the new worldview of the internet generation: how it challenges and destroys, but also opens up vast new opportunities. His findings are counterintuitive, imaginative, practical, and above all visionary, giving readers a glimpse of how everyone and everything--from corporations to governments, nations to individuals--must evolve in the Google era.
Along the way, he looks under the hood of a car designed by its drivers, ponders a worldwide university where the students design their curriculum, envisions an airline fueled by a social network, imagines the open-source restaurant, and examines a series of industries and institutions that will soon benefit from this book's central question.
The result is an astonishing, mind-opening book that, in the end, is not about Google. It's about you.
This scattered collection of rambling rants lauding Google's abilities to harness the power of the "Internet Age" generally misses the mark. Blog impresario Jarvis uses the company's success to trace aspects of the new customer-driven, user-generated, niche-market-oriented, customized and collaborative world. While his insights are stimulating, Jarvis's tone is acerbic and condescending; equally off-putting is his pervasive name-dropping. The book picks up in a section on media, where the author finally launches a fascinating discussion of how businesses-especially media and entertainment industries-can continue to evolve and profit by using Google's strategies. Unfortunately, Jarvis may have lost the reader by that point as his attempt to cover too many topics reads more like a series of frenzied blog posts than a manifesto for the Internet age. (Jan.)
Copyright (c) Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc.
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January 26, 2009
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