Monday, January 18, 2010

Google - Changing Your Life Now and in the Future

Historically, the art world has been a bit behind the curve on the latest and greatest in technology. We have advanced past the blinking time indicator on the VHS tape players and we can for the most part use our cell phones. But do we really understand some of these services around us that we use daily and pretty much take for granted. let me get your attention. A year ago this next Friday.. January 22, 2009 Google announced that their fourth quarter revenues were 5.7 billion dollars . This was an 18% increase over the previous fourth quarter. And believe me with what they have planned for you, this is just the beginning.
"Using complicated algorithms similar to those used to fuel what is arguably the world’s most sophisticated web browser, Google has unveiled Google Books. Like Google’s other services, Google Books provides a simple, intuitive interface built around the user’s needs. Google has made its name on being the web browser of choice for just about everyone. Many turn to Google for e-mail (Gmail), driving directions (Google Maps), news (Google News]), social interaction (Orkut), streaming video (YouTube), and even cell phone service (the T-Mobile G1, powered by a Google Operating System). Google’s new hat is not only that of a librarian; Google wants to be the largest, most comprehensive digital library in the world. This is right in accord with Google’s mission: “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” Matthew Detiveaux on Illicit Cultural Property.
For this news junky who is also a bit curious about everything this is about as good as it gets. For those of us who may be challenged by this technology you just need to jump in and try it. Don't worry about what you think you can't do... just try it. I heartily recommend doing away with manuals and paying for one-on-one instruction. Repetition is about the best form of education you can get with new technology.
Once you get past the mental obstacles you will be amazed at the freedom that this knowledge gives you by exploring the internet with all the tools Google offers. You curious whether a dealer or gallery has a solid history, just Google it and sit back. In this time if you are dealing with someone who doesn't come up on the internet, I would certainly be curious. Wondering whether the talking heads are telling you the truth about a politician, go on Google's You Tube and watch the video yourself and make up your own mind. Wondering about that Chinese jade find on the Roadshow in Raleigh last summer, Google it and you will have an address you can click on that will bring up the segment, who did it, how much it was appraised for, and the final selling price. Maybe you live in Des Moines and you want to find the closest place that sells gluten free organic products. Just Google it.
This is a unique time. And quite frankly I can't calculate how much time I would waste without the help of Google and Amazon. Twenty years ago when I started my tribal art database that enabled me to find auction comparables for my appraisal business, I was motivated by a promise I made to myself. If I was going to waste my time, I was going to do it on my terms and not someone else's. Whether it is 1990 or 2010, this still motivates me today.

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