Special to washingtonpost.com
Friday, December 16, 2005 6:00 AM
Not since Gutenberg invented the modern printing press more than 500 years ago, making books and scientific tomes affordable and widely available to the masses, has any new invention empowered individuals or transformed access to information as profoundly as Google. I first became aware of this while covering Google as a beat reporter for The Washington Post. What galvanized my deep interest in the company was its unconventional initial public offering in August 2004 when the firm thumbed its nose at Wall Street by doing the first and only multi-billion dollar IPO using computers, rather than Wall Street bankers, to allocate its hot shares of stock.
A few months later, in the fall of 2004, I decided to write the first biography of Google, tracing its short history from the time founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page met at Stanford in 1995 until the present. In my view, this is the hottest business, media and technology success of our time, with a stock market value of $110 billion, more than the combined value of Disney, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Amazon.com, Ford and General Motors.
The Google Story went on sale in the United States on Tuesday, Nov. 15, and the extraordinary reach of the search engine has made the book of global interest. The book is also being published in Great Britain, Canada, Australia, China, Taiwan, Russia, Germany, Brazil, Italy, Japan, Korea, the Czech Republic, Holland, South Africa, Turkey, New Zealand and Indonesia.
-- David A. ViseChapter 26 -- Googling Your Genes
The excerpt from "The Google Story" is no longer available at washingtonpost.com. Click below to read the transcripts of David A. Vise's Web chats on his book:
* Sunday Outlook, Nov. 13, 2005: "What Lurks in Its Soul"
THE GOOGLE STORY by David A. Vise and Mark Malseed, Copyright © 2005 by David A. Vise, Published by The Bantam Dell Publishing Group, a division of Random House, Inc.