Renaissance man in the Knowledge Age Achieving more with less

Monday, 14 May 2007

Leveraging Google

With the buzz about Web2.0, Mash up and SOA, I thought this would be an opportune time for a quick post on how an enterprise can leverage Google so that can go where no man has been before.

When we think Google we think search and rightly so they have had a major impact on that landscape, but search is not the only thing we should think. As of this moment there is probably some half dozen other major Google online applications which is not within the primary search space.

These applications which I am not including with the primary search space are Google Documents, Calendars, Base Data, AJAX, Checkout, Email and Blogger. If you include the rest like searching, mapping, ad words/sense, etc the list just sky rockets. What is more important is that Google have developed stable and well documented API's for these services.

Google clearly want folks to build applications that use their API, because these become additional channels, channels which are very sticky simple because once an organisation invest in learning and implementing an API they happen hang around for very long time. That said and understanding that one could spend a whole posting on the commercial issues, let move along to what we can do with this stuff.

Via the Google API's all of the Google Services have become 'Web Services' therefore a custom smart client or web application can be written to replace the existing heads. This in itself is not very interesting, given that the Google interface is so functional. The next step is integrating single services, like the Google Check service, which in short is a merchant facility for online transactions.

The immediate benefits are clear here, reduced development time and you get access to a bullet proof facility, but go a step further and use Google Spreadsheets Data API and you can easily hook-up a whole reporting and management system which produces Graphs on sale numbers and operational targets.

Another Cool combination would be to use the Gdata API to store the products online that you would like to sell. So all of a sudden you don't have to maintain your own database, Google is doing for you and somehow I think they can do a good job of it.

List of possible uses are almost unlimited, you could use blogger to data amongst a group of analysis, data which can read by a human eye as well as being machine readable. Anyhow as you can see the list could continue forever. As a thought exercise image a desktop smart client application that relied on web services for all it' s major components, how things would change not only in what we could do but also how quickly we could do it.

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