The words 'clever' and 'death' crop up less often than 'Google' in conversation. And the US tech giant’s algorithm may well shape our access to knowledge for generations to come.
The words 'clever' and 'death' crop up less often than 'Google' in conversation. That’s according to researchers at the University of Lancaster in the UK. It took just two decades for Google to reach this cultural ubiquity. Larry Page and Sergey Brin – Google’s founders – were not, initially, interested in designing a better way to search. Their Stanford University project had a more academic motivation. Tim Harford tells the extraordinary story of a technology which might shape our access to knowledge for generations to come.
Producer: Ben Crighton
Editors: Richard Knight and Richard Vadon
(Image: Google logo and search box on a screen. Credit: Yui Mok/PA Wire)
Sources and related links
The Search: How Google and Its Rivals Rewrote the Rules of Business and Transformed Our Culture, John Battelle, Nicholas Brealey Publishing, 2006
The impact of Internet technologies: Search, (PDF) July 2011, McKinsey
Harvard Business Review: Data Monopolists Like Google Are Threatening the Economy