I have covered Google Apps more than any other news about Google. The view has provided me with an example of how Google has successfully built an ecosystem. From where I sit, it seems like a pretty solid model to follow. At its core are the right components:
- Google Docs
- Google Calendar
It fits with a number of associated services.
It fits with Android and the Chrome OS.
The system encompasses Google App Engine, a framework for building apps.
The one thing I do miss is Google Wave. It had been developing its own community of hackers. I was sorry to see it dropped.
Google Apps attracts young developers who are creating services that use data and collaborative technologies in masterful ways. You can see it in the companies populating the categories in the Google Apps Marketplace.
Will Google acquire any of these companies.? Undoubtedly. But I hope the emphasis is more about how the company can continue to be that flat, frictionless community network that keeps those startups and innovative services running.
If Google keeps that focus, it will continue to be a creative hub. It may have its valleys and peaks but this is a company that has as much chance as any to have the longevity of a company such as IBM.
Keeping focused on successes such as Google Apps will make Google a company that lasts. That's why I hope Larry keeps the dreams of space travel a personal hobby.
The future is in the data that fills any space. Rockets are cool. But an apps ecosystem? Now that can go way further than a space ship to Mars.