Overheard: Word of the Day

Nov 29 2007   1:32AM GMT

Overheard: Google’s Larry Page is modern day Andrew Carnegie

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse

martin_varsavsky.jpg But when I saw the icons I remembered a dinner with Larry Page at the Clinton Global Initiative in NYC last September when I asked him what he thought was the limits to growth of Google and much to my surprise he did not say servers, or people, but he said electricity.

It turns out that Google is by now the largest owner of computers in the world and that computers are consuming more and more of the electricity that is used in the world. Therefore Google has the largest utility bill in the planet. And Larry is concerned about this.

Martin Varsavsky, April 25 2006

I just finished a biography about Edith Roosevelt and when I heard about Google’s plan to make their own electricity yesterday, all I could think of was “How American!” It’s just like the turn of the last century with Henry Ford and Andrew Carnegie and John D. Rockefeller. Need a reliable, cheap source of steel to build your railroad cars? Tired of being jerked around by market prices? Buy a steel plant and make the raw product yourself.

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