Sergey Brin appears to have started a blog (on Google’s Blogger, of course). It’s called “too.” Here’s the first post:
Welcome to my personal blog. While Google is a play on googol, too is a play on the much smaller number – two. It also means “in addition”, as this blog reflects my life outside of work.
And here’s the first paragraph of the second post, published one minute later (and written first, presumably):
For more than 20 years, my mother has worked with computers at NASA. So, when she developed a pain in her hands the diagnosis seemed easy — Repetitive Stress Injury. Except that it wasn’t so easy. As her mysterious symptoms progressed it varied — RSI, fibromyalgia (unexplained pain), Lyme Disease, and so forth. It was only after visits to many specialists over a number of years that the diagnosis settled — Parkinson’s Disease. Since there is no clear test for Parkinson’s — it is defined by its symptoms — we only grew certain as those symptoms developed and as her medications began to alleviate them.
That’s quite an opening. Personal. Revealing. Well-written. Tragic. (It also explains where Google’s symbiotic relationship with NASA came from, but that’s a different story). The blog then goes on to explain how–in part due to work by his wife Anne’s company 23andMe–Sergey believes he is predisposed to getting Parkinsons. That’s even more personal.
All in all, a heck of a first post. And some quick conclusions about the blog itself:
- Sergey’s breaking new ground (again). This is a world-famous deca-billionaire, whose every utterance is scrutinized for deeper meeting, who has 20,000 people working for him and hundreds of thousands of others sucking up to him in one way or another. And, so far, his blog is just a guy writing about deeply personal stuff that, for obvious reasons, he cares a lot about. It’s written in English, not CEO-ese, and it neither talks down to–or up to–the reader. It is, in fact, exactly what it purports to be: Sergey’s life outside of work. Until now, we’ve never had a non-work-related conversation with Sergey (or, for that matter, any conversation), and now we feel like we have. And we’re glad.
- Sergey doesn’t care about PR, but this is a brilliant PR move. Once you become a world-famous decabillionaire–or, for that matter, just famous–people tend to look at you differently. Sergey’s should remind people that he is, first and foremost, a human being, and a thoughtful and decent one, at that. (This is certainly what we thought already, but now we’re even more persuaded.)
- Sergey has a mum. We didn’t think Sergey DIDN’T have a mum–we just never really thought about it. But now we’ve thought about it–and we know she’s dealing with something that most people will thank their lucky stars they won’t ever have to deal with. So right away, we respect her (and him, for introducing us to her). And, boy, she must be awfully proud of him.
- No one has commented! This is probably because the comments are moderated (we left an unworthy one saying thanks and sending our best to his mother). Most people probably either don’t believe it’s really Sergey, or just don’t know what to say.
We have no idea where Sergey will take this, and we assume there’s just a decent chance that this is someone just pretending to be Sergey who will now crow about how dumb we are. But we hope not. And we look forward to reading more about his life outside of Google.
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