02 September 2012

Giving up on Google

Google's abandonment of the millions of users of its home page feature, iGoogle, is a wake up call. The company motto of 'do no evil', is clearly a sham, as it's adventures in China and other matters have indicated. This event, which has angered thousands of people who have taken to the online forums to express their dismay has resulted in not a single response from the company, telling us, loud and clear, that it is just another corporate giant that can't be trusted to continue to deliver what we've come to rely upon. So, what is it like to do without Google? As it happens, not bad.

I have now switched almost entirely: instead of iGoogle, I now use Protopage and I find that I like it more and more - it makes iGoogle seem rather old fashioned and clunky.

I'm also in the process of switching from Gmail to Outlook.com - at least I know that Microsoft is just as likely to screw me as is Google, but when it is expected, I can live with it.

I have been using Chrome as my primary browser, but, now that Safari has the same kind of "omni-bar" (address and search box in one), I no longer use Chrome and have switched permanently to Safari.

And for a search engine, Duckduckgo is proving to be perfectly satisfactory (in spite of its silly name). I like the uncluttered presentation of results and, again, this makes it look rather more sophisticated than Google. And Microsoftk's Academic Search, serves as a reasonable alternative to Scholar.Google.

So, now is the time to switch, folks: let's give Google a kick in the pants to remind it of its commitment, still standing proud on its company page:
#1: Focus on the user and all else will follow.
Since the beginning, we’ve focused on providing the best user experience possible. Whether we’re designing a new Internet browser or a new tweak to the look of the homepage, we take great care to ensure that they will ultimately serve you, rather than our own internal goal or bottom line.
How's that for irony!

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