We've all watched Google's evolution from student idealist to strident actuary like uncles at successive weddings.
Once Google was shy and disdainful of ancient, grubby ways. Now it embraces them as if it's worried about its 401(k) -- that's $401,000 profit for every ad run on Google.
The concept of doing no evil has taken on a dreamy, nostalgic quality. The concept of brand advertising, once derided as faintly sad, is now at the core of Google's attempt to gain some Apple-y emotions.
Still, this morning some were vaguely stupefied that the company had run an ad for its Nexus 7 tablet on its home page.
"No! Not the home page!" they cried, through anguished sobs.
True, this wasn't the first time that the Google home page was adorned with an ad. But it was certainly the loudest and most obtrusive.
It was as if Google had come back home for another wedding and brought with him a thrice-married girlfriend.
Sadly, the remaining cabals of the pure might do well to get used to this grave new world.
Google's just another business, searching for another dime.
What is slightly surprising is that it hasn't yet unleashed its rather whimsical doodle team and turned the logo into a moving (in every sense) ad for its lovely little tablet.
The doodlers have proved themselves masters and mistresses at provoking pleasant feelings.
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For the Nexus 7, they could surely come up with a cute little boy who dreams of ruling the world, if only he could get in touch with it, visualize it, control it, and talk to it. Along comes the Nexus 7 to fulfill all his wishes.
Or perhaps they can offer cameos of famous scientists of the past bemoaning the fact that they are no longer alive -- and therefore no longer able to experience the delights of this marvelous machine.
When you're battling for every dollar, every patent, and every heart, it's no time for squeamish squealing. It is time for the art of war. It's time to use your artists to fight that war, their paintbrushes in the attack position.
I look forward to the day when we go to the Google home page and the logo begins to animate among rainbows and flowers and dissolve into a new word -- yes, the word "Motorola."