Monday, February 02, 2009

Google – A human side of it

Google has been a God send to earth in this new millennium. It is a brand that has created tremendous value to all its stake holders. At least, I as a user have benefited enormously from it without having to pay a single Rupee for its services. I will not discuss about the obvious value that it has created to the mankind but a more human side of it. That is the mistakes that it did with some of its products. I am writing about Google and its mistakes because they make very few of them and its impacts are huge.

Search - This site may harm your computer
It had flagged all the websites that it has indexed as malicious and wouldn’t let anyone open them. They had to come out in public to apologize. Who better to do it than its VP Marissa Mayer. Anybody will pardon if someone that beautiful comes out and says sorry, wouldn’t they? ;-)

AdsenseExchange rate problem that assumed 1 dollar as 1 Re
Google had sent its content network partners cheques that just assumed a 1:1 exchange rate with dollar. If somebody has earned $500 in a month through adsense for his blog/website, he will get a cheque of 500 Rs instead of 25,000 Rs!

Apps emailYour account is locked for 24 hours
Rehan Yar Khan, CEO of (where I interned) had this frustrating experience. He had been locked for 24 hours for supposedly performing an illegal activity.

Orkut – The 3 photos that isn’t there
When I open my orkut account, I get a screen like this.

People who visit my profile would see that I have 3 photos but would be disappointed when they open to see that there aren’t any. Would they really? ;-) It is not really a serious bug but it is serious enough to a perfectionist.

Chrome – Is it the fastest web browser? Is it out of beta now?
It is the fastest browser in the market by a long margin, but not to me. For last 2 days, I had to open my gmail in html mode to negotiate slow internet connection. To make matters worse hostelites around me were browsing normally. At one point yesterday my friend and I exchanged laptops because he wanted to watch a movie while I wanted to browse internet. He casually opened firefox to check out how bad the internet speed was. To my delight/horror it was working fine. Verified with Chrome for the speed, it was bad. I couldn’t find the reason but it is true with the version ( that has come out of its beta. As we do with any software problem, I uninstalled and reinstalled but the situation has not improved.

Reader – The reader that unread my posts
I have subscribed to around 60 blogs on my RSS reader. I subscribe to only those blogs that post less than 5 posts in a day, for the rest it is better to read them from browser directly. I get around 20 new posts everyday and finish reading them the same day. Reading all the posts take an hour generally. I get intimidated when I see too many unread posts. A few days back when I opened the reader I found 11 unread posts for Amit Aggarwal’s sub-blog India Inc. But 10 of them were the ones I had already read. This has happened with Zoho blog and Rajesh Jain’s blog also.

These mistakes are not complete or are the most serious. But what is important is the way they handle them. By accepting them, taking responsibility, apologizing, correcting and making sure that such mistakes doesn’t happen in future.