Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Google knows that the Web site is dead

This is an interesting post: Google Knol is here, but what about the domain name?

As far as we can tell, from the statements on the website, Google doesn’t appear to have tried to buy the domain name, at least not before last December when they made their initial announcement.

Wow, is that not all the proof you need that Web sites just don't matter anymore? "Knol: a unit of knowledge." That's it, that's all that matters in a Web driven totally by search. The era of the Web site (excepting social and e-commerce sites) is over.


Bud said...

So, have we come full circle, and there's now only one giant destination site:

Kevin Gamble said...

Well, if 80% come from search (and that is growing) then we are seriously to a point where the physical location of a piece of content is irrelevant. If Google can do it cheaper and more efficiently then they will win. Google certainly is in a better place to monetize content than any other player.

I'm reminded of visiting my father last year and seeing that he had his navigation toolbar hidden. Google was his only window on the world. I don't think his behavior is that unique.

Bud said...

I think part of the value of the search results comes from the diversity of links they are built on. I agree with you on the absolute dominance of search in web navigation. But, there's a whole ecosystem that goes into making that happen that I'm not sure is served by one dominant player.

Mark Pilgrim said...

My limited understanding (as a Google employee who recently launched a product, but unrelated to Knol) is that Google rarely buys separate domains for projects. The exceptions are when we want to create a separate brand "distinct" from Google, or if you like, "bigger" than Google. Example: which currently redirects to the Open Handset Alliance, which we will (allegedly, eventually, someday Real Soon Now) be open-sourcing.

Anyway, I wouldn't read too much into it.

Kevin Gamble said...


That is very interesting to think about. Thanks for pointing out how Google handled Android differently. It makes sense.

BTW, thank you for your python book. I definitely learned from it.


Kevin Gamble said...


I have _never_ said that Google's dominance wasn't some cause for concern. I agree, it worries me quite a bit. Just not sure that there is much any of us can do about that.