Family

Well, during Mother's day it is difficult to think of anything besides family. I just called home and my whole family is there having a great barbecue, while I'm here home alone. But one more thing made me think of family this weekend. I went to a Bar-Mitzvah yesterday. There are very few things in the Jewish life that is more powerful as a family event than a Bar Mitzvah. Maybe one of them is a wedding, but it is a little debatable. Wedding means that someone is leaving the house and starting a new house.

Maybe the Bris could be more family-oriented... I don't know, I don't remember ever going to any.

One of the conversations yesterday made me remember what is still my professional dream: a paperless world. I know I have bothered my readers with this view of the world already in the past, but yesterday someone mentioned that she wanted to change her office to a paperless office (she is a lawyer) and I was amazed with myself when I said that there are some things you can do, but there are things that you just can't yet. I started with the discussion of how it is still complicated to deal with current technology, but there are a couple of things that could be done, like scanning documents to PDF. PDF is a pretty stable technology, although Adobe keeps adding new features to it, mostly related to digital signatures and security.

What I think is still missing? An easy way to distribute and organize this information. Things should be as easy as "hand me the paper" or else it won't work. Sure email is faster than normal internal mail, but a lot of business is still done face-to-face and this technology is still lagging.

But I'm optimistic. I think that most companies are actually realizing this problem and working towards solutions. Integration is a challenge, but that's why I still have to go and open my own company to do this! :-)

Oh, before I forget, I have to talk about the most stupid thing I've seen done by a well-known company in a long time: Google's Web Accelerator. C|Net has a good article about it. Some people claim it is a good idea, it is a bold move by Google to have one of the most precious pieces of information that Google is still missing to improve search relevancy: click through information. Google is betting that they can deal with the bandwidth necessary for it. But beyond these interesting details, the idea is ridiculous. Websites are moving towards more and more personalization, if Google decides to be a proxy of all this information, personalization is dead. Web ads are also dead, because Google would cache them and they would be, for the advertiser, as if it was clicked only once. And this doesn't even get into the whole thing of the crawler deleting information or serving private information to other people.

If this can be fixed? Well, only Google will tell. I don't think so, but maybe they just don't care about it. Powerful companies that have the motto of "Do no good" end up just making people accept it and learn how to deal with it. Maybe it's the new Kirkland office that is making Google have some Microsoft-like ideas.