The Stories Behind Google News,Google, Images, and Google Books

  • Google News evolves after September 11 US attacks
  • Google Images and the Google Image iconic image
  • What is Google’s Inspiration- Improving users experience

I have been wondering how Google News aggregator works and this weather got me hooked to Google It: A History of Google by Anna Crowley Redding. Just as the Title suggests it the author narrates how Larry Page and Sergey Bin came up with idea-Google. The Book is motivational and inspiring. They show us how problems we are facing could be turned into wild business ideas with the number one priority being the user.

Jennifer Lopez Dress that led Birth of Google Images

Do you know how Google Images came into being?  It simple! At 2000 Grammy Awards, Jenifer Lopez wore a green Versace dress, and it captured the eyes of many. Many people around the word then turned to Google to search for event and Jenifer Lopez dress. Eric Schmidt who was the CEO then said that Jenifer Lopez dress was the most searched term and sadly in 2000 Google was just a text-and-link-based search. Therefore, to give the users what they were looking for, they came up with Google Images. You can now search for the news or anything with related images.

Embed from Getty Images

Moreover, you can also use Google Images reverse to upload images from your phone or computer and search for related images online. You can check my previous article How to Search for Images using Google Image Reverse

Birth of Google News

What of Google News?  During September 11, 2001 attack it became hard to get information since all cell phone networks jammed, loss of television transmission towers. Remember, there were no smartphones to record what was happening; there was no Facebook live stream, no Twitter to keep with what was happening. The world then turned to Google to search for information and the latest news on the attack, but they did not satisfy the users.   According to Google, the most searched term was “twin towers,” but Google had no information or news about the attack, and they felt they were letting down its users.

So, what did they do? Google placed links to all the news organizations like Washington, Post, CNN and Yahoo News on their front-page urging users to visit those sites so that they could get news. Sadly, some sites were overwhelmed with traffic and Google had to find a solution.


As a result, Google software engineer Krishna Bharat thought of crawling news and providing different viewpoints of the same story. Boom! That is how Google News was born.

What led to the rising of Google Books?

For Google Books, Larry and Sergey had been thinking of a way to organize old-fashioned books in libraries and those written after the invention of the internet so that they could be accessed easily.  They hired a team of robotic engineers to scan and digitize books and then they hired software engineers who came up with a program that made the texts searchable.

What is Google’s Inspiration?

At this point, you could be wondering what inspires Larry and Sergey to come up with all these innovations. They believe in improving users experience just beyond search. But how do they do it? Larry says that Google mines data about the user and uses that information looking to the users to know which problems to solve next.

For example, with Google photos, users wanted a place to store photos. Google Chrome, users, wanted to the browser on the internet easily, and the list goes on and on.

Google as a company is enormous and its beyond our scope to measure its impact on the world. We are all part of Googlers-part of Google community.

Further Reading:

The Effects of September 11 on the Leading Search Engine – MIT

What the Front Pages of the Web Looked Like on 9/11/2001

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