GOOGLE

Google in English

Graduate Abbreviations

Google is the name of the world’s most famous internet search engine. The company behind it, Google Incorporated, sees its task in organizing the world’s information, making it generally usable and accessible. We succeeded: Google is the world market leader of all Internet search engines with a market share of over 80 percent.

  • The two students Larry Page and Sergei Brin founded Google Inc. in September 1998.
  • Since Google shows users the search results sorted by relevance, the Internet pages are broken down according to search terms and keywords.
  • Not only the monopoly position of Google calls critics on the scene, also the subject of data protection is Google’s undoing again and again.

The two students Larry Page and Sergei Brin founded the company Google Inc. in September 1998. Six years later they entered the trading floor with their search engine – with huge success. With a value of around 160 billion US dollars, the company is now the most expensive brand in the world alongside Apple (Millward Brown, as of 2011). In 2010 the company had a turnover of more than 29 billion dollars with around 20,000 employees.

How the Google search engine works

Short for GOOG by abbreviationfinder, Google works with the help of so-called web crawlers. These are computer programs that automatically search the Internet and analyze web pages. Google follows the links it finds in order to include as many pages as possible in the search index. This index is huge and is constantly growing: in the summer of 2008, over a trillion URLs are said to have been listed in it.

Since Google shows users the search results sorted by relevance, the Internet pages are broken down according to search terms and keywords. These and over 200 other factors play a role in the sorting algorithm, which calculates the so-called PageRank value. The PageRank value measures the link popularity, i.e. the number and quality of links that target the respective website. The more frequently a page is linked, the higher the link popularity of this page and the higher the relevance of a website is assessed, which in turn makes it appear higher up in the search results. So much for the theory – because how exactly the page sorting works remains Google’s trade secret.

What Google has to offer

In addition to the pure search for websites, Google also offers numerous other services such as the full text search for PDF or Microsoft Word documents, an image search, a pure news search with Google News, the online atlas Google Maps and the street image service Google Street View, the search for scientific Working with Google Scholar and searching for products in online shops. In addition, there is the email service Gmail, the video portal YouTube, a cloud music service, the online contact network Buzz, the automatic translation of websites and, last but not least, the free Android and ChromeOS operating systems and the Internet browser Google Chrome. This list could go on and on as Google is constantly expanding its range of services.

Google targeted by privacy advocates and antitrust authorities

The search engine Google helps millions of consumers every day to find targeted information on the Internet and to find their way around the data mass of the Internet. In doing so, Google promotes freedom of information – on the one hand. On the other hand, Google has a kind of “knowledge power”: Google knows exactly who is looking for what, who is interested in what and who is clicking on what. “Don’t be evil” is Google’s corporate motto. But in the eyes of the critics, the company does not always stick to it.

Google’s quasi-monopoly

On the one hand, Google’s quasi-monopoly has met with criticism. In Germany, over 90 percent of all search queries go through Google. Competitors, such as Yahoo or Microsoft Bing, are far behind with shares of less than three percent. It has not yet been proven that Google is actually abusing its dominant position. However, it is undisputed that by determining the relevance of websites, Google decides what is “important” or “good” and what is “unimportant” or “bad”. This is exactly where the power of Google lies and that is exactly what can be dangerous for our information and knowledge society.

Google and data protection

But not only the monopoly position of Google calls critics on the scene, also the subject of data protection is Google’s undoing again and again. Most recently, the company hit the headlines with the street photo service Street View, because homeowners did not want to consent to the unsolicited image of their building on the Internet. When it became known that the camera shots for the Street View project also recorded and saved personal user data from wireless computer networks (WLAN data), the Internet company, which had been so sympathetic to date, suffered a serious loss of image and trust User information stored in search queries, which is particularly interesting for advertising, leaves data protection officials with a queasy feeling. Google dominates the online advertising market with a market share of 80 percent, as the company is able to follow the user’s trail through the network. In this way, advertising can be used very specifically. According to the motto “Tell me what you are looking for and I will tell you who you are”, the storage and analysis of personal search queries allows extensive possibilities for the creation of individual user profiles and thus for individual advertising. This is a lucrative business: in 2010, Google made a profit of 8.5 billion dollars thanks to personal online advertising, or thanks to the many millions of search queries that we users around the world submit to Google every day. In this way, advertising can be used very specifically. According to the motto “Tell me what you are looking for and I will tell you who you are”, the storage and analysis of personal search queries allows extensive possibilities for the creation of individual user profiles and thus for individual advertising. This is a lucrative business: in 2010, Google made a profit of 8.5 billion dollars thanks to personal online advertising, or thanks to the many millions of search queries that we users around the world submit to Google every day. In this way, advertising can be used very specifically. According to the motto “Tell me what you are looking for and I will tell you who you are”, the storage and analysis of personal search queries allows extensive possibilities for the creation of individual user profiles and thus for individual advertising. This is a lucrative business: in 2010, Google made a profit of 8.5 billion dollars thanks to personal online advertising, or thanks to the many millions of search queries that we users around the world submit to Google every day.

GOOGLE