Google Vs. Its Soul

This has been bothering me for quite some time now. Google has decided to launch a censored version of its search engine in China due to pressure from the Chinese Government. It makes me wonder about their decision to not provide the US Government with data about search terms. Was it encouraged by factors other than their so called stand on user privacy (think about not wanting to disclose some business details, about terms that help generate those huge revenues). Also this incident has forced them to change their censorship policy from

 “Google does not censor results for any search term. The order and content of our results are completely automated; we do not manipulate our search results by hand. We believe strongly in allowing the democracy of the web to determine the inclusion and ranking of sites in our search results.”


 “It is Google’s policy not to censor search results. However, in response to local laws, regulations, or policies, we may do so. When we remove search results for these reasons, we display a notice on our search results pages. Please note: For some older removals (before March 2005), we may not show a notice at this time.”

Meanwhile, I came across this brilliant comparision on the web.

1. This is Tinanmen searched on Google Image Search
2. This is Tinanmen searched on Google China Image Search

Just for a comparision with Yahoo check out the links below. I hope people from Yahoo think twice before slinging mud. Also they might want to check out this story on their bending over.

1. This is Tinanmen searched on Yahoo Image Search
2. This is Tinanmen searched on Yahoo China Image Search

I think it is about time someone from Google answered this question.

“Is money more important than your principles?”


Did two online transactions over the last two days to complete my transformation to an e-shopper.

1. Booked air tickets for a trip home (first use of my new credit card) 🙂

2. Booked a railway ticket for a friend from IRCTC (a government e-comm site and it works surprisingly well) 🙂

Things are so much easier thanks to the internet. No more standing in line to book a railway ticket. No more sweat. No more paying the stupid middle-man. I must say this is one place Lalu Prasad Yadav has done well (Maybe he did nothing for it, but he should get some credit).

Best Opening Lines

Here is a link to 100 Best First Lines from Novels. I havent read much but here are my favourites.

Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice. —Gabriel García Márquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude

Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way. —Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

He was an old man who fished alone in a skiff in the Gulf Stream and he had gone eighty-four days now without taking a fish. —Ernest Hemingway, The Old Man and the Sea