What is going on with Google?

I expect that most Google posts today are about the youtube  takeover, this one isnt. 

I was trying to write something profound on patent earlier, and I’d remembered that Jason had posted on it. I typed the name of his blog,  ponderings of woodrow into Google, as my bookmark library is a tad chaotic, and Google replied with this.

SORRY….but your query looks similar to automated requests from a computer virus or spyware application. To protect our users, we can’t process your request right now.

This is a troubling development. 

We are frogs in the Internet bath, and spam is slowly but surely heating the water up.


corporate search, GUIs, Autonomy Google and so on..

Google will have us believe that search is the holy grail. (apologies Dan Brown)  Nicholas
Carr on roughtype comments on Google's attempts to surplant GUIs with search. I don't buy it. Charles, a fellow SAPler has some doubts too.

There is a lot of Google myopia at the moment with everyone wondering what will google do next. I'd like to stop thinking about Google and look at enterprise search more generally.

If enterprise search is such a big deal, howcome Autonomy isn't making SAP or Oracle kind of money?  By all accounts, the technology is brilliant (lots of maths PhDs)

Autonomy is founded on a unique combination of technologies borne out of research carried out at Cambridge University. Autonomy's strength lies in advanced pattern-matching techniques (non-linear adaptive digital signal processing), rooted in the theories of Bayesian Inference and Claude Shannon's Principles of Information, that enable identification of the patterns that naturally occur in text, based on the usage and frequency of words or terms that correspond to specific concepts 

 The company has 

  • a solid track record
  • is well run.
  • a very impressive government and blue chip customer base
  • Strong partners.

 It growing fast at the moment, but 50 million dollars revenue is not a big number. 

I don't think enterprise search is as bigger deal as Google and co think it is. If it was Autonomy would be 10x the size it is, or would have been snapped up by someone else for a big number.

If I'm wrong and enterprise search does end up being a really big thing, then Autonomy would seem to me to be a better bet than Google.  -Over 5 years track record in deploying search in the enterprise , understand stuff like security, ERP  and LDAP integration, have partners to configure the stuff, ……



So you have a cool Composite app? How do you sell it?

Steve Ballmer from Microsoft recently commented on how complex the enterprise software sale is.

 “The truth is that the way information technology decisions are made in a company is really complicated. You really have four points of view, and we have to work with all of them–end-users, central IT, line-of-business executives, and then the business leaders, who could be the head of sales, finance or operations.”

There is an excellent article here by Dale Vine  of Freeefrom Dynamics (this is where I picked up the quote) on the complex nature of enterprise software sales, and Hamish  has some thoughts too.  SAP has developed a strong sales force over the years, and it plays a part in our success.

I think one of the major challenges that small software innovators face is in building a proper sales process, team, business development, partnerships and so on. This is not easy. A top sales guy can make a huge difference to the success of start up or niche firm, but often they can't attract the calibre of people that they need to manage the complex sale.

As most of my merry band of 3 readers know, SAP is putting a lot of effort into the ISV channel, and we will see lots of applications emerging over the next year, hopefully emulating the success that Virsa has had. (see Joshua Greenbaum's article)

 A friend of mine has recently left SAP to set up a company, ISV-ecoNet,advising and supporting ISV selling into the SAP customer base. He ran the Netweaver sales team at SAP Germany, so he knows his stuff. He will be able to help companies align their sales and marketing strategies with SAP's, build help build the right contacts in SAP's sales team and in the vast German customer base, and close the deals. He aims to build a portfolio of hot niche products that complement SAP, and help the ISVs bring them to market and close deals. I think he is onto a winner. It will help SAP and it will help the ISVs.

As an example, he is working with a electronic signature company, Authentidate  who have built a great solution that integrates into SAP. Electronic signature is particularly hot in Germany at the moment, due to some recent significant legislative changes, and the German cultural fixation with the "stempel".



A non-SAP post. The sun is shining in Walldorf, Spring is in the air.One of the things that I miss living in Germany is cricket. Well, resting in front of the TV of a weekend in front of the cricket, corridor cricket with a rolled up magazine, a wastebin as the wicket, a piece of paper covered in sticky tape as the ball.

The web is a saviour at bringing ball by ball commentary, either text based or via radio to my desktop though. Cricinfo is my favourite web site in the world.  It is comforting to have a ticker reminding me of the score, except when the bl**dy Australians are winning. It doesn’t distract, merely informs…5 day cricket is a fine thing. The world would be a better place if everyone played it.

I’d like to ask all cricket lovers to start peppering their blogs with cricket related metaphors. I’m tired of stepping upto the plate, making first base, being at bottom of the ninth and coming out of  left field. We need more leg-breaks, plumbs, stroked through the covers, sticky wickets, googlies, wrong uns, chinamans(men), doosras, picking seams, all ends up, long hops, square legs, back over the bowler, and ducks (australian ones)

Oliver, my 11 month old son, shows every promise of being Germany’s opening bowler, he will bat at number 4, and field at cover point.