Google apps aren’t just for nerds! At least that’s the message the search company tried to convey tonight at a media party at its Chelsea offices. (Though we had previously been uninvited from tonight’s fete, Google’s PR team relented and let us in. Many thanks to Ellen West and her staff.)
In a dressed-up cafeteria, a gaggle of Googlers showed off a bunch of practical uses for its software, like using Google Maps to keep track of your exercise regimen, using Google Maps on mobile phones, and making a few extra pennies by putting Google AdWords on your travel blog. And senior executives, like VP of Search Products Marissa Mayer and VP of Engineering Doug Merrill, mingled with reporters, though they weren’t willing to gossip that much. Some notes:
- Mayer says the New York Googleplex is nicer than Mountain View HQ; she also acknowledged that Google has ambitious expansion plans for NY. But she wouldn’t talk about the gPhone, Google’s ambitions for the FCC’s upcoming wireless spectrum auction, more aeroplanes, or a Google API blitz supposedly launching on Nov. 5.
- Just saying “gPhone” got most Googlers to grin or pause.
- Spotted on a Googleplex tour: whiteboard plans for a “master plan generator,” with objectives including “buy Apple” and “hire Michael Jordan.”
- Eats were good, of course. They ranged from sushi, antipasto, and shot glasses of fruit and vegetable foams to tater tots, mac and cheese, chicken wings, grilled cheese sandwiches, and pizza.
- In attendance: Star’s Julia Allison, CNet’s Caroline McCarthy, BusinessWeek’s Arik Hesseldahl, reporters from Time, Newsweek.com, Portfolio.com, Forbes.com, Popular Mechanics, Vogue France, Consumer Reports, and dozens more.