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Our goal was just to somehow survive the next Monday

falls no Matter where in the world, no matter whether young or old: we Speak with Google employees, and then often the Name is Urs. The Urs, it has to be one of the old Google-school, non-rumquatscht, but as friendly as can be clearly his opinion, says, without much regard to group policy. And so, the Meeting with the Swiss in the Headquarters of the Google's Cloud business is up and running then. Very nice and straight to the point.

Urs Hölzle, 20 years ago, you had made your dream come true: After a PhD in Stanford, a Professor at the University of Santa Barbara. And then these two young guys from the University there, and don't advertise, you simply ...
so it was. My wife worked at that time at Stanford, we commuted between Santa Barbara and Silicon Valley. The was too cumbersome. Your contract ran another year, so I thought to myself, this year I'm going to find a Job, I come by bike instead of by plane. Independently of each other, two friends told me that Google is looking for someone.

the company Said something to you?
Yes, I used Google since the end of 1998. This new search engine spread then like a Virus among Computer experts on the West coast, because it was clear: she is simply better than all the others.

What they had to offer Page and Brin as an employer, a Professor like you? Money was not it is safe.
We were on the peak of the Internet bubble. When I looked at the technology of the company, I had to say 99 percent: Why in the world are you doing this? In the case of Google, it was quite different: First of all, the two languages during the first conversation of money, like all the others. While others were talking of some dream, a Vision, were Page and Brin technically really competent. Well, you had no idea what that should earn money, but I figured in a year I would have solved your network problems anyway, and would then decide with my wife whether we go back to Europe or to Santa Barbara.

Why was more out of the year?
It was easy for me to quickly realize that there's a Chance to do something really Important. Even though we had even after a year still no business model, was the task to be exciting, to go easy.

"Every Monday topped the previous one by five to ten percent."

in the Meantime, Google has entered the Phase of a madman growth ...
It was crazy. Our goal was to survive this time, actually, just sort of the next Monday.

Why Monday?
Monday was the day with the highest Internet traffic. Many had no access to the Internet at home. Over the weekend, questions have been raised, on Monday, it was then googled it in the office. Every Monday topped the previous one by five to ten percent. Often it was just, sometimes there were between twelve and two times of the error messages, because our systems were not.

Nevertheless, many will tell today, it was very early clear: Google is a great success.
Well, it was already clear: Anyone tried Google once, never used again for a different search engine. Google is a great success, it was clear to me the first Time in 2003, when we introduced the Adwords auction model, and money earned.

The Adwords auction model, the advertiser on search words can offer. What was it previously, with the payment of the employees?
That was, of course, I earned a third of my University salary. The salaries also curtailed our opportunities for employment. I thought at the time, however, that we would never need more than 100 to more than 200 employees.

"most companies fail because the culture no longer works, because departments fight each other."

And a couple of dogs, of course.
Yeah right, my dog was there from the beginning. Since Google is a Dog Company. Sorry, cats prohibited. Even the Cafeteria at our Headquarters is in memory of my dog Yoshka's Cafe.

a Start-up with a rousing atmosphere in which we all pull together, it is clear. It is inevitable that this mood disappears when the Start-up of a group?
This is something that made me at the beginning of the greatest Concerns. Most companies don't fail because the culture works, because departments fight each other, and an internal competition. Important cooperation is – we don't help ourselves, even if it may be our Job. Then something that we call the blameless autopsy: If an error happens, we want to learn from, not someone to blame.

it Was nevertheless inevitable that Google lost its friendly and cool Image, the bigger it was?
I think it is, especially in Europe. I have always been clear. In Europe, there is nothing that is great and good. You can't just assume that the people of a large company with good intentions make.

the intentions Are always pure?
My already.

And Google?
We are 100'000 people. Statistically, can not be only good intentions here. But we have never tried to hide anything. Our Standards are transparency and control.

How important is Europe, with its more stringent Standards? You have helped Google to be better?
Yes and no. There are many good ideas from the EU. To be the right to be forgotten, for example. It is then always the question of how to do something. How strong the original idea is lost in the bureaucracy? But one can say that the EU is a leader in the world in terms of regulation. And Germany, in turn, is a pioneer in Europe. That is why we have our privacy-center in Munich.

Today, you are the chief of the relatively new Cloud business – an area in which Google is the competition, and the overall regulatoryframework overtakes. Does it feel like to Start-up times?
Well, think of Chrome, Gmail, or Android. Since we were not the First. It is similar to back then, but we have a better starting point. And then the market is wide open. About 90 percent of the world's IT processes are not yet in the Cloud. So it is not a zero-sum game, in which we can win only if others lose.

"The Cloud is an opportunity for companies, as they come only every 20 years."

Nevertheless, they are facing with Amazon's Cloud offering AWS a powerful competitor.
you See, we pursue a totally different approach than AWS, a longer-term. Many companies are currently reluctant to move their data and processes in the Cloud, because you don't want to commit to this young market, early on a provider. Those who opt for our new System, Anthos, the can't be pinned down. Because Anthos is open for all providers.

Google provides the infrastructure, even if the customers make the business, then maybe with the competition?
The Cloud is an opportunity for companies, as they come only every 20 years. To me the Situation is reminiscent of the upheaval in IT in the nineties. We are just, shall we say, in the year 1995, so is still quite at the beginning of the upheaval.

do you believe in an efficiency boost in the economy due to the Cloud technology?
at the beginning of the industrial Revolution, every company has its own electricity. The advent of the Cloud is comparable with the introduction of the electricity grid in terms of efficiency. The even greater advantage in the rate of innovation.

what do you mean?
The equipment in most companies is at least ten years behind the equipment of the consumer. Although not spend more money than the company.

Why?
consumers have, since 1995, on a single platform, the Internet. Every Consumer had the exactly same conditions. For instance in 2008 the Same thing happened in the mobile space with Android and the iPhone. As a Software provider, I can play so an Update or a new product to a billion people spend, with minimal risk. Who cares if the iPhone gets an overnight Update? In a company, but an Update none. Because you no longer have to assume that the System works after that. Each company is unique, like each snowflake.

And you want to change.
With Anthos are all back on the same platform. For Software providers, the business company is as easy as with consumers. This will change the industry totally.

Created: 08.11.2019, 10:28 PM

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