Google: a knowledge operating system?
Computers forty years ago did not have such a thing as an operating system; a computer in those days ran one program at a time.
Now, even the smallest of computers has an operating system as a means to manage the computing device. Today, the Internet is going through a similar development. Search Engines are becoming sophisticated enough that very soon we are going to consider the most developed search engine, Google, to be an operating system.
If Google is an operating system, what does it manage and what benefits do we get from adopting it as an operating system. This article considers Google as a Knowledge Operating System (KOS) of the Internet.
In general terms, an operating system is a management system. The operating system that runs your computer manages the demands that each of the different programs you are running at the same time, handles your filing system, hard drives, printers and more.
Applying the concept of "operating system" to Google, a Knowledge Operating System (KOS) manages your knowledge activity on the Internet. Google, as a KOS, manages your requests for information, indexes your web pages, responds to applications you may be running on your computer that interface to it via the Google APIs, and integrates knowledge and information from millions of computers into a single large managed database.
Website owners and webmaster who build more static websites do not gain the same degree of operating system-ness of Google, as do bloggers who have a closer relationships with Google.
I can write a page today, and have my page indexed and readily available for recall in the Google Database within a day. This is like a massive disk drive directory -- only there is a time lag between when I saved the file and when it is accessible. As Google becomes more adept at sending Googlebot around to collect new pages, this sense of "saving something to disk" will increase, thus making Google not only indispensable for others to find my pages, but also, a great tool for me to locate my own pages.
Already I use Google as a bookmark manager. No longer do I remember URLs - it is much simpler to remember how to obtain a site's listing by remembering a word to locate that site.
For example, to get to my site, it is much easier to tell people to simply type Microdoc News into the Google search field than to tell them the URL. I go to all my favorite sites with a single word or two-word combination. What are the benefits of considering Google an operating system? From a user perspective, it places Google in a position of centrality to my tasks. It is where my knowledge is indexed, it is where I locate new knowledge, and it is the system that underlies my writing in Word, preparation of weblogs, and so on.
This concept also help me to understand and order the world. From my knowledge of other operating systems, such as Windows, I can see how Microsoft has tried to become the be-everything-to-everyone company. From this perspective, I then draw in my mind some distinctions between Google as-an-operating-system and the rest of the Internet.
Thus, how many applications does Google Inc., control and do I expect to see applications that operate on the Google Operating System. Of course, we should be looking to see applications of all types being generated that operate on the Google Operating System. Already we see some stand-alone tools in their infancy, such as the Google API Search Tool produced by Softnik. We also see hundreds of sites being powered by Google. But what I am looking for are some powerhouse type tools that use the Google operating system.
For example, what about a blogging tool that enables me to click a right-hand menu up and then select to search Google for a certain term, select the webpage that I want to quote in my blog, select the text to be shown in the blog from that page, click OK, and there is a complete quotation from a webpage, plus link automatically created. Now how cool would that be. And when I run my spelling check, why could not my blogging tool use the Google speller?
And what about having the same Google Search tool as a right-hand click on my blogging editor, and then I could perform a search and choose to create a hyperlink in my text to that search?
Thinking of Google as a Knowledge Operating System could also be instructive for Google Inc. as to how to develop this monster into the future and how to protect what it is they have. I believe that Google Inc., is already thinking along these lines. This is why we should be thinking along these lines as well to know what to expect from our favorite search engine.
Source: Microdoc News