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This article is about the corporation. For the search engine, see Google Search. For other uses, see Google (disambiguation).
Not to be confused with Googol.
Google is an American multinational corporation specializing in Internet-related services and products. These include search, cloud computing, software, and online advertising technologies. Most of its profits are derived from AdWords.
Google was founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin while they were Ph.D. students at Stanford University. Together they own about 16 percent of its shares. They incorporated Google as a privately held company on September 4, 1998. An initial public offeringfollowed on August 19, 2004. Its mission statement from the outset was "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful", and its unofficial slogan was "Don't be evil". In 2006 Google moved to headquarters in Mountain View, California, nicknamed the Googleplex.
Google on ad-tech London, 2010
Rapid growth since incorporation has triggered a chain of products, acquisitions and partnerships beyond Google's core search engine. It offers online productivity software including email (Gmail), an office suite (Google Drive), and social networking (Google+).Desktop products include applications for web browsing, organizing and editing photos, and instant messaging. The company leads the development of the Android mobile operating system and the browser-only Chrome OS for a netbook known as a Chromebook. Google has moved increasingly into communications hardware: it partners with major electronics manufacturers in production of its high-end Nexus devices and acquired Motorola Mobility in May 2012. In 2012, a fiber-optic infrastructure was installed in Kansas City to facilitate a Google Fiber broadband service.
The corporation has been estimated to run more than one million servers in data centers around the world (as of 2007) and to process over one billion search requests and about 24 petabytes of user-generated data each day (as of 2009). In December 2013 Alexa listed google.com as the most visited website in the world. Numerous Google sites in other languages figure in the top one hundred, as do several other Google-owned sites such as YouTube and Blogger. Its market dominance has led to prominent media coverage, including criticism of the company over issues such as copyright, censorship, and privacy.
Main article: History of Google
Google's original homepage had a simple design, since its founders were not experienced in HTML, the markup languagefor designing web pages.
Google began in January 1996 as a research project by Larry Page and Sergey Brin when they were both PhD students at Stanford University in Stanford, California.
While conventional search engines ranked results by counting how many times the search terms appeared on the page, the two theorized about a better system that analyzed the relationships between websites. They called this new technology PageRank; it determined a website's relevance by the number of pages, and the importance of those pages, that linked back to the original site.
A small search engine called "RankDex" from IDD Information Services designed by Robin Li was, since 1996, already exploring a similar strategy for site-scoring and page ranking. The technology in RankDex would be patented and used later when Li founded Baidu in China.
Page and Brin originally nicknamed their new search engine "BackRub", because the system checked backlinks to estimate the importance of a site. Eventually, they changed the name to Google, originating from a misspelling of the word "googol",the number one followed by one hundred zeros, which was picked to signify that the search engine was intended to provide large quantities of information.