Larry Page Bio, Founder of Google

  • January 15, 2020
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Born March 26, 1973, to Michigan State University computer professors, Larry Page is one of the co-founders of Google, with Sergey Brin. The two met as graduate students at Stanford, where Page earned a Master’s degree in computer science after graduating from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor’s degree in computer engineering.

Page and Brin had a mutual interest in data-mining, which led them to co-authoring the groundbreaking paper “The Anatomy of a Large-Scale Hypertextual Web Search Engine” in 1995, addressing the needs of search engines in light of the expanding internet and its vast amounts of decentralized, unmoderated data.

The following January, the two students began developing a search engine they called “BackRub.”

Search engines needed to do more than merely find material online, because there was now too much of it to sift through — they needed to analyze what was found in order to identify the likeliest desired results.

While other engines ranked results based on data within the web page, Brin and Page’s engine ranked them based on the relationships between web pages — web pages that were linked to by a large number of other web pages were presumed to be more valuable results, and were given a higher ranking.

The thesis seemed sound, and stood up to testing, and in 1998, Google, Inc., was incorporated — “BackRub” had been renamed to Google, a deliberate misspelling of googol (a one followed by 100 zeros), a reference to the vast amount of information the engine sifted through.

Like many technology start-ups, the company soon relocated to Palo Alto, before moving to Mountain View in 2003, where Google’s headquarters — the Googleplex — remain today.

The search engine’s popularity was driven by its efficiency not only in design but in presentation — Google ads are text-only to keep the layout uncluttered and ensure fast loading times.

As Google became the best-known name in search engines, even entering the dictionary as a verb, the brand was extended to other areas: Google offers everything from an RSS feed reader and online calendar to collaborative applications like Google Documents and desktop software like Picasa. The company went public in 2004, and has since acquired the popular Youtube video-sharing site.

Page and Brin served as co-presidents of Google Inc. until 2001, when Eric Schmidt was hired to run the company as chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

He currently serves as President of Products, while Brin is President of Technology. Many of the new products and services developed at Google in the last few years — a full half of them, according to an internal analysis — have been credited to the company’s “20% time” policy, according to which engineers are to spend one day a week (a fifth of their work time) on projects that engage their interest, rather than specifically assigned work.

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