Has Google gone loony? Google is one of the most successful, ubiquitous and increasingly strange companies, reports McCracken and Grossman in their article “The Audacity of Google”. What makes Google special is that aside from its mainstream business activities, it also undertakes risky long shots or what the reporters like to refer to as “moon shot” projects.
The latter projects are special due to being extremely or even crazily ambitious and the results or rewards being expected only sometime in the future. As the Founder Page is quoted saying, “We should shoot for the things that are really, really important, so 10 or 20 years from now we have those things done”.
With this ambition in mind, Google’s latest venture seems to be indeed a long shot. The company is launching Calico, a company that will focus on health and ageing. Not only is this area of business far removed from what Google does, but can or is it even possible to defy the ageing process and one day beat death? Nothing seems to be impossible for Google and its founder.
McCracken and Grossman report that there is no other company in Silicon Valley that has the money, nor the bones to carry out these long shot projects. Moreover, they rightly point out that if Google doesn’t do it, which company will.
It’s important to observe that Google is also a product of its environment. Silicon Valley is a world apart, where there is a general mindset that everything is possible and any problem solvable thanks to limitless amounts of technology and data processing power, adds McCracken and Grossman.
With that said, there is sense in Google’s new venture. The reporters highlight that medicine is increasingly becoming an information science, as doctors and researchers are starting to harvest and mine massive amounts of data. With this perspective, what other company is more skilled at handling and processing huge quantities of data other than Google?
In short, new light can now be shed on medical problems thanks to amazing data-handling skills and statistical analysis. If Google has both the money and resources to fight mortality, who cares if it comes across as being a moon shot — let’s hope for a dream come true.
Google was nominated the World’s Most Attractive Employer for the fifth time in a row based on Universum’s employer brand measurements. Close to 200,000 business and engineering students would love to land a job at Google. Why? The reason are many: the company’s market success, attractive and exciting products and services, its focus on innovation…are some of its achievements to name a few. Then of course, the company gets six pages of editorial coverage in Time magazine for its audacity to aim for the unbelievable – the type of spin that can only gain the hearts and minds of students that wish to make a difference. Somehow the company is brilliant at generating hype around its brand as well as good word-of-mouth.
McCracken, Harry & Grossman, Larry (2013). Can Google Solve Death? Time 30 September 2013.