FEAR GRIPS GOOGLE -- A Fear Of New Meetings, Maybe

Sergey Brin and Larry Page 1

Google has re-worked the way it launches new products.

“We were concerned that some of the biggest ideas were getting squashed,” Google CEO Eric Schmidt told the WSJ, which broke the story.

In the new way of doing things — started recently — Google execs will pitch new products to Eric, Google cofounders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, or other top execs during meetings called “innovation reviews.”

Before, lots of ideas and projects at Google hovered below the radar without top execs ever knowing they existed.

The idea is to encourage innovation and also to keep employees from feeling like they have to leave the company to pursue good ideas (paging Twitter founders).

The Journal says the new process is already responsible for three new products: Google Wave, some kind of facial-recognition software to be launched later this summer, and App Synch, which makes it easier for Google Docs users to synch to Microsoft Office.

A Google friend of ours says the changes aren’t exactly a big deal in the company.

These changes could be some of what the New York Post was getting at in its hyperbolicly headlined story “FEAR GRIPS GOOGLE” from earlier this week:

Co-founder Sergey Brin is so rattled by the launch of Microsoft’s rival search engine that he has assembled a team of top engineers to work on urgent upgrades to his Web service, The Post has learned.

Brin, according to sources inside the tech behemoth, is himself leading the team of search-engine specialists in an effort to determine how Bing’s crucial search algorithm differs from that used by the company he founded in 1998 with Stanford University classmate Larry Page.

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