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A Google of One

Mark Mzyk | February 20, 2008

Yahoo has announced they are now using Hadoop, an open source implementation of MapReduce, for processing search data, and they’ve also announced impressive performance gains because of it.

While investigating this story I also came across mention of IBM using Hadoop for it’s cloud computing initiative.

I think these related stories point towards the future of the web.  As open source continues to grow, software building blocks are becoming easier to obtain and use.  Cloud computing is now promising the same ease of use building blocks for hardware.

You currently need to be a company the size of Yahoo, Google, IBM, or Amazon to have the resources to run operations like they do.

But with the likes of open source and cloud computing, I think the playing field is leveling and individuals will gain the power to compete against the largest web companies that currently exit.

What is to stop me from writing a piece of software that deploys Hadoop across Amazon’s computing cloud and then offering a service off of that?  So long as I can afford the initial entry servers, I can use Amazon’s expertise to run my back end while keeping my maintenance cost down by using open source solutions.  I now have a service, that if implemented smartly, can scale and run quickly, at a fraction of the cost Google paid to develop their service while potentially competing against Google in some area.

Examine that scenario.  Does it sound plausible to you?  It certainly does to me.  The resources that used to be precious are now freely available.  So then what becomes the bottleneck?  What becomes the skill that is valued?

Two things:

  • Implementation.  The ability to leverage all the pieces together effectively.
  • Business Acumen.  By this, I mean having a smart business plan.  If you are going to pull this off, you are going to need to cover the cost of using the cloud computing and the initial servers.  Yet if you can come up with a way to make enough money off of each individual using the service, it could potentially be self sustaining.  Google and Yahoo could even help you compete against them by supplying you with revenue from ads.

The pieces are all there.  Now all we need is the first enterprising individual to prove it can be done.

Filed in: General,Technology.

9 Comments

  1. Pingback from In The Wild: A Google Of One | Programmer’s Paradox:

    […] Earlier I wrote a post on how it is now possible for a single person to have the power of Google because of all the technologies available. […]

    February 25, 2008 @ 23:19
  2. Comment by Matt Terenzio:

    Okay. Okay, already. I’ll do it. And don’t think I’ll forget that you gave me the push I needed, when I make it to the top.

    February 26, 2008 @ 00:00
  3. Pingback from A Google of One : Yes and No - Adam Jordens@littlesquare:~/:

    […] A Google of One […]

    February 26, 2008 @ 11:09
  4. Pingback from Cloud Computing’s Second Life | Programmer’s Paradox:

    […] still musing on the possibilities of cloud computing, I started to wonder about online games, such as Second Life and World of Warcraft. A large barrier […]

    February 27, 2008 @ 13:12
  5. Pingback from Cloud computing now? « FTW or WTF:

    […] A Google for One […]

    February 28, 2008 @ 00:22
  6. Pingback from All the little things » Building a robust infrastructure:

    […] All types of services are now running on EC2 as Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud is called, anything from large scale operations over to small operators trying to build a Google of one […]

    March 4, 2008 @ 10:35
  7. Comment by Charlie:

    […] One of many articles I’ve seen lately about the promise of cloud computing:

    http://www.programmersparadox.com/2008/02/20/a-google-of-one/
    […]

    March 5, 2008 @ 04:57
  8. Pingback from links for 2008-03-09 « Brent Sordyl’s Blog:

    […] A Google of One Yahoo has announced they are now using Hadoop, an open source implementation of MapReduce, for processing search data, and they’ve also announced impressive performance gains because of it. (tags: ec2 aws hadoop) […]

    March 9, 2008 @ 10:19
  9. Pingback from The Myth That You Can Be Google | Programmer’s Paradox:

    […] suppose I’ve propagated that myth with certain posts of mine.  But that was a post on achieving technical success like Google, not on working like […]

    March 13, 2008 @ 08:59