Guh, Goh!29 Jun 2011
Remember Google Wave? Maybe not, but you might remember the hype. The 1 hour video introduction, the breathlessly handed out friend-of-a-friend invitations. Google Buzz, similarly. Google Health. Orkut. Knol. The list goes on.
The upside of trying lots of things is that you sometimes catch a winner, I guess. Maps and location were winners, but they have a natural synergy with the search / advertising business.
The downside is that Google has burned up all it’s cachet. When 80% of the products you launch bomb, people eventually assume everything you launch is going to bomb. Which, in the self-levitating bootstrapping world of network services and network effects means they have already bombed. Google+, we hardly knew thee.