Hell, I'm writing this from a campsite that I found and got to through Maps,
What do you think Google's revenue from Maps is? Four years ago people were guessing it'd be about $4b a year by now but everything is so buried in the exact same bullshit we're discussing that it's effectively unknowable. Either way, Google Maps exists to make local search more accurate - in other words, Google created Maps pretty much to cut down on SEO which I think is completely fucking hilarious. They also cut down on their drive-around-like-simps time by buying Waze, which exists solely to throw you off on some random fucking tangent just so it can improve its traffic data a little, which is why I no longer use Google Maps. Apple, disaster that it is, has exceeded Google locally through the simple act of not throwing me onto an off-ramp because its algorithm thinks I'll save a car length and a half.
most of my screentime is given to YouTube,
Which is now absolutely drowning in the worst bullshit low-rent advertising on earth. "Oh you wanted to watch a video? Here's ten seconds of some chump tapping his jawbone with a spoon to cure tinnitus." The advertising industry took one look at the eyeball value of Youtube ads and went lol and gave it over to the off-shore dropshippers. Every decent Youtube stream I've seen lately has some form of "go visit Patreon where I put my real shit" or "go visit this other streaming service where I put my real shit."
everything I have ever emailed that's still relevant to me is in Gmail.
A project created to increase Google's ability to target ads to you that was absolutely annihilated by Facebook. FUN FACT: None of our employees under 40 use email. For anything. Ever. They all have two or three inboxes that are completely abandoned and when I say "yeah so you probably don't want to use your work email for this that or the other" they all say "but it's the only one I have." Speaking as a "power user" of email, things have gotten so awful and balkanized that my gmail accounts dump my other gmail accounts in spam. I have a whilte label Google Workspaces email address that every Gmail address on the planet thinks it's spam. The ones I bought from ICDSoft? Actually get through better. Gmail has become the AOL of the 2010s except the shitposters don't use email at all so they can't even make fun of you for it.
it feels to me like social media collapsing in on itself the past year is an omen for bigger tech collapsing in on itself
Social media collapsed during the Trump election. Entirely. Irredeemably. Never to appear again. Because
- Facebook is only useful for hobbies enjoyed by old people
- Twitter is for railing against vaccines and liberals
- Tumblr is for railing against conservatives and the patriarchy
- Reddit is for tech support results marginally better than Google is now giving you
...and everyone else is touching grass. You think Zuck would have set fire to eighteen billion dollars if they had any data indicating Facebook will exist in five years? "Hey how 'bout an Instagram without pictures? Musk is fucking up so badly people will legit use that instead."
You wanna hear this morning's adventure?
I need another of the one on the top. I have lots of the ones on the bottom. The one on the top is 4-40. The one on the bottom is 3mmx0.5. I didn't know that though, because while I have some really nice thread gauges for shit that might fit on a motorcycle, I don't have anything tiny enough for shit that fits on a FrankenKern. So I used these.
Sure looks like that little fucker is a 10-32, doesn't it? It's not. I could have confirmed this because the real thread gauge will totally measure a 10-32, they aren't small. But what I spent an hour doing instead was googling "3/16 10-32 standoff."
And Google happily served 'em up to me.
They don't exist. At all. Design diameter of a number 10 screw is 0.190 and a 3/16 hex has a minor diameter of 0.1875. But google doesn't think those numbers matter, doesn't know what fractions are, doesn't know what a number ten screw is in relation to any other screw, so it sees "standoff" sees a bunch of products and throws stuff at you out of context. You can look for images and dig down and they're all wrong - and since the cheap Asian manufacturers are big into 3mm standoffs (who wouldn't be) and since all these things are in tables and dropdowns and all sorts of other shit, the fact that Google is sitting there going "no really dude you can totally buy this here's a link" prevents you from going "wait a minute maybe the screwcutters on my lineman's pliers are suboptimally labeled."
Of course, if you do something normal like open up a McMaster-Carr catalog and look on their website, it quickly and easily goes "naah dog that part totes doesn't exist and we sell like fuckin' everything." If you get on Mouser or Digikey it will do the same. "What's that? you want a 10-32 standoff? yeah that's weird bro, it's like 3/8" or 1/2" and costs like $7, we can get it for you buuuut" and you sit there going NO BUT GOOOGLE TOOOOOOOLD ME
And here's the thing. Without Google ensuring me every time I opened a window that the product existed if only I dug deep, I would have gone "huh that can't be right."
And holy fuck how much fun are we going to have when AI starts playing.
"Rhyming lyrics, crowds, gatorade? Yeah we can make that commercial. All of these things totally exist."