There are two basic visions of the future of the web, and one of them is wrong. I’m going to work on the right one for a while. At Google. Starting today.


Sixty one comments here (latest comments)

  1. Well that was weird… opened up your homepage to see your “My Good Easy” post. Then pointed some feed parsing code at your site, and it came back with this post. Which convinced me that my code wasn’t ordering feed entries correctly, because obviously this post couldn’t be the latest since it wasn’t on your homepage. Eventually I got around to refreshing.

    Dangit, stop writing posts while I’m using your site for testing!

    In other news, uhm… well congrats are in order I guess. I’m a little shaky on who’s got what vision for the web. There doesn’t seem to be any shortage of visions these days. Google asked me if I wanted to work for them a week or so ago, but I have unchangeable travel plans that will effectively prevent me from entertaining the idea until sometime next year. And somehow I don’t think I meet their hiring standards anyways.

    How much will this job affect your writing on

    — Bob Aman #

  2. Good luck. And don’t start mincing yr words, I enjoy yr straight lines.

    — gizo #

  3. Well, congratulations are in order! That’s one place I’d like to work at myself. But when the floor sweeper position requires a degree, I know I’m probably not destined too.

    Good fortune!

    — Jeff #

  4. Whoa. Congrats!

    — Edward O'Connor #

  5. could you please extrapolate somewhat on these
    two abovementioned visions and how google supports one?
    as specifically as possible, and other than the money?
    and does this mean that if i keep posting that there will be girls
    stooping at the end of the drive knowing my personal flavor
    of anality?

    — daniel smith #

  6. Sorry to see you go.

    — James Snell #

  7. Congratulations.

    — Robert Sayre #

  8. That’s going to be quite a commute to Lenoir!

    — Patrick Mueller #

  9. Goodness gracious. Congratulations!

    — Phil Wilson #

  10. Congrats! Looking forward to the fruits of your 20-percent time (and the other 80 percent too, I’m sure).

    — Mark Siegal #

  11. Another vote for more details on this “right” vision you speak of. And congratulations.

    — Joshua Kaufman #

  12. I’m not sure I understand your statement. Amazon’s low-level web services are much better than Google. Google’s focus is on providing real applications, not services, from what I’ve seen. Otherwise, why not be wide-open something like G-Drive??

    Congrats! And Good Luck!

    — Brendan #

  13. Congrats Mark!!

    — Saravanan #

  14. “There are two basic visions of the future of the web, and one of them is wrong.”

    The wrong one being the vision that says Chinese people should be able to learn about historical events?

    — Congrats, but ... #

  15. Congratulations! It’s good to see another smart person joining the google team – hopefully you can talk them into taking accessibility seriously.

    — Jemaleddin #

  16. Congrats! Looking forward to an entirely different kind of evil! :)

    — Anil #

  17. And witch one is the wrong vision??

    — Lucas Castro #

  18. That’s great news, congratulations Mark!

    — ManxStef #

  19. Sincere congratulations!

    — Joe Crawford #

  20. Congrats on the new position. Are you moving to California?

    — Adrian Holovaty #

  21. > Are you moving to California?

    No, I will be working remotely from NC.

    > That’s going to be quite a commute.

    You have no idea.

    — Mark #

  22. > How much will this job affect your writing on

    None at all.

    — Mark #

  23. First off, congratulations on the job. I’ve been reading for what seems like forever – your post on “Linux essential apps” was probably the catalyst that finally switched me over permanently from Mac to Linux.

    I’ve gotta call bullshit on the whole

    There are two basic visions of the future of the web, and one of them is wrong. I’m going to work on the right one for a while.


    Google is a media company – as is Yahoo. They’re the Fox and Clear Channels of the web, and the same media consolidation that rendered television and radio next to useless is going on again.

    There are more than two visions – you of all people should know this. Some are “right”, some are “wrong”. Right and wrong for who?

    Google’s – massive datamining, countless media acquisitions, monopolistic competition, extreme profits over ethical practices, syphoning from the open community while giving next to nothing (SoC) back – are definitely not right for me.

    Good luck all the same, and no matter how deep you descend into the Googleplex, remember – Don’t Be Evil. ;)

    — Steven Mansour #

  24. > I’m a little shaky on who’s got what vision for the web , cheesy as it may be, is the best explanation I can give.

    — Mark #

  25. tecosystems » links for 2007-03-20 (pingback)
  26. Ha! Got ya beat by 162 miles. We could meet up in Amarillo for lunch.

    — James Snell #

  27. > > That’s going to be quite a commute.
    > You have no idea

    Looks like if you used a different map, you might be able to shave some time off that commute…

    In all seriousness, congratulations. You definitely deserve it.

    — Kenny #

  28. Cool!

    — Anne van Kesteren #

  29. “There are two basic visions of the future of the web, and one of them is wrong.”
    Correction: “and one of them, IMHO, is wrong.”
    Best of luck!

    — Boris Anthony #

  30. Good luck.

    — Bas Westerbaan #

  31. Wow. I’ll be observing.

    — Lim Chee Aun #

  32. Congratulations!!

    — Koen Van der Auwera #

  33. > Correction: “and one of them, IMHO, is wrong.”

    It’s a personal blog, it’s all implicitly ‘IMHO’.

    Congrats, Mark.

    — Drew McLellan #

  34. Congratulations and good luck in your Dive Into the Google!

    — Jough Dempsey #

  35. Congratulations! Seems your doing so well you got rid of those pesky ads.

    — Jim Deming #

  36. Switch-Case / Blog Archive / Links for 3/20/07 [my NetNewsWire tabs] (pingback)
  37. Good luck, keep blogging :-)

    — Anders #

  38. What’s on my mind » Two visions? (pingback)
  39. Good luck and congratulations.

    — Jeff Triplett #

  40. Wow. So Google hires a third person with accessibility knowledge. I’m sure that’ll fix everything right up.

    The *enormity* of what’s wrong with Google beggars belief.

    — Joe Clark #

  41. Mark Pilgrim to Join Google -- SEO by the SEA (pingback)
  42. Best wishes. Your work always educates me. One of these days I’ll even attempt the Linux thing!

    — Steve #

  43. Guido van Rossum, Alex Martelli, Thomas Wouters, Mark Pilgrim… Google is the greatest Python lab on earth… What are they building? Maybe a Python-powered teleportation device… Beam me up, Guido!

    — Argonauta #

  44. Congratulations.

    Just remember: don’t be evil. It’s getting harder these days, and harder to see in Google.

    — Stephen Downes #

  45. Isn’t addiction recovery supposed to teach you to be humble?

    — Andy #

  46. I would say that there are ninety-nine basic visions of the future of the web, and all of them are wrong, or at least likely to prove highly inaccurate. To see why, read about the “future” of the web as predicted in 2000, 1998, 1996… and look at the web today.

    — Michael Day #

  47. I hope you win lest we have to wait another 4 years for the rest of the crowd to realize what is already apparent.

    No one likes waiting for the slow to catch up.

    — J$ #

  48. Meriblog: Meri Williams’ Weblog » links for 2007-03-20 (pingback)
  49. Mark Pilgrim goes to Google. « Graceful Flavor (pingback)
  50. If I understand this correctly, Mr. Pilgrim doesn’t say that Google’s vision is right, he just asserts what he believes in as right, will be his job at Gúgöl. Whatever that will be: kign.

    — angelday true #

  51. Congratulations! From the little I know you, I’m sure Google will be able to appreciate your creativity.

    — Håkan W #

  52. Mark Pilgrim va da Google | Fed’s Bolsoblog (pingback)
  53. Will you be working at the Kirkland, WA campus?

    — anonymouse #

  54. LOL! LOVE the link to Google’s map about the trip, although… This 1 day, 17 hour time period is a bit rushed. I guess they assume we don’t stop for anything.


    — Renee #

  55. Yeah, that “route” map prompted the following conversation:

    Joe: Oh look, “only” 1 day 18 hours!
    Mark: Yeah… if you’re an astronaut.
    Joe: In diapers.
    Mark: On crystal meth.

    — Mark #

  56. > Will you be working at the Kirkland, WA campus?

    No, I will be working remotely from my home in North Carolina, and commuting to the Mountain View campus every so often.

    — Mark #

  57. Hi Mark, congratulations on the move to Google. I hope you find it challenging and rewarding. What’s your role / scope there?


    — Isofarro #

  58. Hey, you could be the first kid on your block to finger a Thought Criminal in ROC.

    After all, someone has to make all those iPods for Apple.

    — wwt #

  59. >No, I will be working remotely from my home in North Carolina, and commuting to the Mountain View campus every so often.

    That’s pretty forward looking. Google, please cut me a deal to work from where-ever and check-in once a few weeks.
    Google: Nawwwweeehhh … youre a nobody.

    — Anon #

  60. > What’s your role / scope there?

    50+ comments, and you’re the first person to ask me this question.

    My official job title is “lead technical writer,” which is considered an engineering job for the purposes of classification within Google. Anyone who knows about how Google works will tell you that engineers are _extremely_ free to move around within the company, so who knows what I’ll be doing a year from now. Probably depends on how I spend that mystical 20% time. But for the moment, I am writing. A lot. Already.

    — Mark #

  61. Heh, that doesn’t sound like you’re too happy.

    I just checked out the “Lead Technical Writer” position description at Googles job site – sounds pretty much exactly like you:

    We are looking for someone who has a passion for web development and a deep understanding of web technology including advanced HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, as well as a knack for explaining the all-too-common complicated quirks and edge cases.

    Are you frustrated that there isn’t any good cross-browser documentation out there on the web? Do you maintain a web development blog or website in your spare time? Do you enjoy writing AJAX applications just for fun? When you encounter technologies that you are not familiar with, do you just go ahead and learn them? Do you love writing clear, accurate and helpful software documentation? Is the need to help your readers understand a technology and get going with it the overriding goal of everything you write? If so, send us your resume!

    Preferred experience and skills:

    * Ability and inclination to write your own sample code and test cases.
    * Experience writing scripts or building tools to improve the process of generating documentation.
    * Project management/planning/leadership experience.
    * Experience working as a web applications developer.

    I think most of that could be condensed into:

    We are looking for someone who is Mark Pilgrim.

    — Ryan #

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