Good. Evil. Corporate.

Wednesday, September 14th, 2005

It seems increasingly the fashion to talk about modern technology-based firms in extreme terms. Google is “good.” Microsoft is “evil.” The founders of Google swear to do no evil. Steve Jobs is the antichrist…or is he our saviour?

Maybe it’s just because we’ve entered a time where the higher-ups at these huge, otherwise undefinable firms project personalities that are caricatures of themselves…they bely the white bread calm that most actually must embody in order to run a behemoth of the corporate world. In the age of really white-bread guys like IBM’s Thomas Watson, it takes a lot of stretching to declare a company so inertially “there” as embodying all that is great about our selves, or the worst qualities of man, tucked behind a Paul Rand logo.

Or maybe it’s just because it gives people something to write about when Google ends up doing something “evil”, or Microsoft is unexpectedly angelic. Not happens that often. The web this morning was filled with mocking at Microsoft for developing ‘Gadgets‘ (Steve Jobs originally announced this term for what are now known as Dashboard ‘Widgets‘, which of course is what Konfabulator called these little javascript confections before Apple usurped the (un-trademarked?) name.

And I know that’s what the web was filled with because good ol’ (evil ol’) Google introduced Google Blog Search, which apparently checks feeds very, very often for new ruminations, and you know the one thing we need in life these days is fresh ruminations…right out of the oven. Heck, maybe even half-baked ruminations can be satisfying.

They even have an RSS feed available for the results of a particular search. What this does, by the way, is to add more capability, to turn a good RSS Reader like NetNewsWire into something about as close to a newsroom system like the pros use as you can get for, well, mostly free. So when four different stories break (Roberts!! Blackout! New Orleans! We’re eating more beets!) you have your own desktop Situation Room, minus all that pesky Blitzerage.