Now it is hard to find someone who has never heard of Google. Google is everywhere and serves multiple purposes. Need help with essay? Ask Google. Want to improve studying results? Try Google Education. Looking for business opportunities? Google for Startups got you covered. And there is so much more.
But the first Google office was a garage, and the first data center was set up in the dorm room of one of the founders, Larry Page. So how two Stanford students achieved this immense success? What does it take — exceptional skills, strong support, or pure luck?
There is no simple answer. But the story of Google is fascinating, inspiring, and bears some essential lessons for every aspiring college student.
How it all began
The story begins with one Stanford student Larry Page and the one who wanted to become Stanford attendee — Sergey Brin. In 1995 Larry had to show Sergey around Stanford as he wanted to pursue a Ph.D. in computer science here.
In 1996 Larry and Sergey started working on a search engine named BackRub, which in 1997 will become Google. If you ever wondered what the strange name it is, Google is a wordplay on the mathematical term “googol.” Obvious name choice for two Stanford students studying computer science.
The year 1998 marks an official birth of Google Inc., as the company received its first big check for $100 000. It was written by Andy Bechtolsheim, who co-founded Sun Microsystems. He gave Larry and Sergey money after seeing a simple demo at home of Stanford faculty member.
Sometimes when the idea is brilliant, there is no need for bombastic presentations.
Google and a new millennium
2001 was a big year for Google. The company made its first public acquisition and acquired Deja.com., an archive of user discussions.
In 2003 Google launched Google AdSense and created Google Grants, which helps non-profit organizations promote themselves via Google. The projects got more prominent, ambitious, and required employees. No wonder that in 2004, Google became the workplace for more than 800 people.
2005 was another critical year as Google Maps, Google Earth, and Google Analytics were created. Also, in 2005, the first YouTube video was published. Just in a year, YouTube will become a part of Google.
After it, Google projects just kept snowballing. 2008 marks the launch of Google Chrome. Three years later, the company launched Google+. In 2019 it stopped working for personal accounts and now is only available for G Suite users.
Still, in 2019, Google keeps growing and evolving. The company employs 60 000 people in 50 countries. It offers hundreds of products such as YouTube and Android. According to Ruth Porat, Chief Financial Officer of Google, the revenues of the company in 2019 are $38.9 billion, 19% up compared to the second quarter of 2018.
Google continues its search for new opportunities and taps into different spheres. For example, the company announced the launch of a cloud gaming platform, Google Stadia.
The Secret of Sucess
Some twenty years ago, Larry Page and Sergey Brin were two students sitting in a garage. Now both of them are among the richest men in the world. So what can every aspiring college student learn from their success story to create one’s own?
- Do not be conventional. In one of their founders’ letters, Larry and Sergey said that Google is not a traditional company and has never been. Each of its projects is bold, meaningful, and uses all the available resources to the fullest.
- Do not be afraid to take risks. Being unconventional inevitably comes with being risky. Some of Google projects, such as Google Maps and YouTube, seemed a straight-on crazy — but they turned out to be immensely successful. Still, many projects, such as Google Flu Trends, did not work out as success and failure are going hand in hand.
- It takes more than two people to achieve great success. Sergey Brin and Larry Page are brilliant entrepreneurs, but they receive some quality help along all the way. For example, from Susan Wojcicki, who is now CEO of YouTube. Back in the day, Sergey Brin and Larry Page used her garage as their first office.
Google is the company, created by two students. In twenty years it migrated from the tiny garage to a great office in Mountain View and conquered the world. This story is certainly inspiring for every college student and can teach many lessons.
Achieving great things takes lots of courage, dedication, and, as Larry and Sergey wrote, “healthy disregard for the impossible.” But everybody can push the boundaries and make great things happen. If you do not believe us — ask Google.