A couple of weeks ago, we exhibited at a conference specifically for call center managers, the 'ACCE' show in San Diego. The first question everyone asked was, "What on earth is Google doing at a call center show?" With an attendance at more than 1,500 people, we had to answer this question quite a few times!

Our story was simple - call centers want to provide faster customer service. Their agents need to access the right information at the right time. These agents are used to Google at home, so why not give them Google at work?

The attendees really understood the story once we explained how one of our customers, a global auto manufacturer, was using the Google Search Appliance. Their agents would get questions like "Why are the brakes on my 1996 hatchback model squeaky?" While much of the information resided in 22,000 documents in their knowledgebase, their previous search system was not providing relevant results. Immediately after piloting the Google Search Appliance, they said "Straight out of the box, without any customization, we were seeing a lot better results with the Google Search Appliance."

Needless to say, the attendees of the ACCE show quickly 'got it' and understood exactly why Google was at a call center show. (Of course, from our end, the show being in San Diego was reason enough :-)

To find out more about our call center solution, read our white paper.


Last year we established the Google Enterprise Superstars award to recognize companies that use Google's enterprise search solutions in particularly innovative ways.

Today we're announcing three new award winners.

Williams Scotsman International, a leading provider of modular space solutions, has earned a Google Enterprise Superstar award for deploying the Google Mini for site search on and for setting up a different Mini to power search on their intranet inside the company. Read their story here.

eCompressed air has won the Google Enterprise Superstar award for using the Mini on, its e-commerce business-to-business website for the compressed air market. Site search powered by the Google Mini has increased website transactions by a whopping 204%! Click here to read their story.

ESAB Welding has earned the Google Enterprise Superstar award by improving their site's user experience by adopting a Google Mini. ESAB Welding previously had separate search engines for its product catalog and for its company information, but with the Google Mini, they were able to create a search engine for both kinds of content, thus simplifying the user experience on their site. Read how the Google Mini helped them.

We'll be announcing additional Enterprise Superstars over the coming weeks, so stay tuned!


A few months ago at the Web 2.0 conference, our CEO Eric Schmidt, in conversation with John Battelle, announced our plans to launch an online presentation application this summer. Well, summer is winding down, and today, people who use Google Apps can create, share, upload and collaborate on online presentations in real time. As part of Google Docs (formerly Google Docs & Spreadsheets), your presentations can be edited from anywhere, shared with specific individuals or an entire organization, and viewed in presentation mode simultaneously by distributed teams.

Maybe you need to revamp an outdated sales presentation -- import it into Google Docs and invite your colleagues to chime in. When it's finished, you can drive the presentation directly from Google Docs as your field sales team looks on. Or maybe you just found out that your group has been called on to deliver a presentation in a couple of hours -- create a presentation from scratch, add your teammates as collaborators, and work on it simultaneously to get it done faster.

For a while now, Google Apps users have asked for a presentations feature within Google Docs to make it easier to create and share presentations online, so this launch is particularly exciting for the Google Docs team. We look forward to developing increased functionality for Google Docs, and we hope to have more to share with you soon.

For more on this, read the post on the main Google Blog.


Today I'm at's Dreamforce conference. Marc Benioff just unveiled and the new VisualForce service for customizing application user interfaces. But rather than write up a review of the keynote, we wanted to share's story about how they use our latest SaaS product, Google Custom Search Business Edition.

A few weeks ago I sat down with Adam Gross,'s VP of Developer Relations, to hear how uses Google Custom Search. It's interesting to hear Adam stress how important search is to developers, and it's great that was able to quickly implement our search solution to provide search across a large number of disparate websites. You can't even tell that the search engine is powered by Google since there's no Google branding.

To hear the story in Adam's own words, check out the video below.

And if you're interested in hearing more about what Google and Salesforce are up to with SaaS, we'll be at's Dreamforce conference for the rest of the week.


Our collaboration with the fine folks at continues to roll next week as we will be participating in their Dreamforce '07 user and developer conference. In fact we'll be there in a few different forms which speaks to the growing synergy between our organizations.

Given the hosted model leveraged by many of Google's business offerings, it makes sense that many of Salesforce's 35,000+ business customers have interest in complementary offerings from Google. To that end, we partnered with the Salesforce team this past June to make available our Adwords advertising platform right from within Salesforce Group Edition. So
businesses can seamlessly manage their online advertising campaigns using Adwords and then convert the leads that get generated into new customers using's CRM solution. We're also seeing a lot of interest in Google Apps from this customer base. So, in the Campground, our product managers will be eagerly available each day of the conference to further discuss how you can take advantage of the Google Adwords integration and/or Google Apps.

Meanwhile on the developer and IT front, we're also seeing a lot of overlap in our respective communities. Google is exposing a growing set of functionality and content through its APIs and developers are realizing that they can use those APIs to enrich their own business applications. So in the developer track on Tuesday of the conference, we'll be hosting a breakout session discussing Google Gadgets, Google Data APIs, and Google Gears and their specific applicability to the business use case. We'll also welcome Google Enterprise Professional partners Appirio and Theikos who will show some of the recent ways in which they've built product that makes use of both Google and Salesforce technologies. And our developer programs engineers will be available for discussion Tuesday in the Developers Lounge, including a special featured session in the ADN theater during the lunch break.

So come check out the conference and visit us in the Campground, in the Developers Lounge, and at the breakout session talk. Salesforce is even offering a special 50% off deal for developers and customers new to their platform. See you there!


We all know how somehow miraculously finds the best documents for us - but did you know that a big part of that is based on a large synonym dictionary that was automatically generated using advanced Machine Learning techniques? One of the great advantages of owning a Google Search Appliance is that you get the benefit of what we've learned from billions of queries about words and their synonyms right in your box!

Query Expansion is a feature of the Google Search Appliance that intelligently expands the terms of the query based on the context to find more candidate documents. Query Expansion uses word stemming techniques (e.g . expanding "car" to "cars") and a list of common synonyms from Google's internal dictionary (e.g. expanding "car" to "automobile") to find all relevant documents. This feature can also optionally expand the query terms based on a custom dictionary that you upload to the appliance.

This feature is off by default. In most cases, you will usually see a marked increase in relevancy simply by enabling this feature.

There are 4 modes of Query Expansion from which to choose:
  • None: Disables query expansion
  • Standard: Enables query expansion using Google's built-in synonyms
  • Local: Enables query expansion using only the synonyms that you upload to the appliance
  • Full: Enables query expansion using both Google's built-in synonyms and the files that you upload to the appliance
So, if you have not uploaded any of your own custom synonyms to the appliance, then you should choose Standard. However, if you have uploaded your own custom synonyms to the appliance (highly recommended for company-specific colloquial or jargon), then choose Full.

Don't be shy... turn it on and try it out! To test more deterministically the effects of query expansion, stay tuned for a blog post on possible search quality evaluation techniques.

Happy expanding!


This past week I attended the Office 2.0 conference, organized by It|Redux, for the second year in a row. Last year was a special year for me and the Docs & Spreadsheets team. We publicly launched the combined product—the Spreadsheets product in Google Labs came together with the Writely product we had acquired earlier that year. We’ve spent the last 11 months improving the product with great feedback from users, who are a combination of consumers and business groups. It’s hard to believe that the Docs & Spreadsheets product hasn’t even hit its first birthday yet.

That’s the main thing that struck me about this conference—it’s a quickly evolving space that is maturing beyond its precise chronology, like a precocious kid whose parents say, “She is four, going on 16.” That’s what web-based applications seem like. We feel the “watch this trick” excitement, but with high expectations and the anticipation of a fast-moving development cycle. In fact, during the “Death of the App” panel, in which our own Rajen Sheth participated, one attendee asked whether the space will cool off as the novelty of the technology diminishes. Ramana Rao of iCurrent responded matter-of-factly with, “The coolness is already gone"—which to me holds some truth. It certainly seems that businesses now expect the interaction and accessibility of the web in any new business app they procure—they aren’t enticed by just the "wow" factor any longer.

From left: Frank Zamani, Rajen Sheth, Ramana Rao, Greg Olsen, Danny Kolke, Mark Bagley, MC Greg Ruff

In that same session, Dan Farber asked the panel why there was so much optimism and confidence when all this activity “isn’t even a blip on [the] competitive radar yet.” The panelists had some good answers. My answer goes something like this: In any technology shift, there is opportunity for new ideas and new winners. The potential and reward for small, creative teams to build products and, hopefully, successful businesses, is thankfully greater than the fear of losing to the status quo or reliance on business-as-usual. That’s why this conference is so interesting—even as the space matures, there are still plenty of great ideas coming from new players.

Thanks to all of you who remind me that inertia and fear of change never bring improvements, and that the best ideas come from the optimistic and energetic pursuit of something better.


If you haven't yet caught today's news, global services provider Capgemini just announced their partnership with us and their focus on Google Apps for large enterprises. The crux of their announcement is that they'll be integrating Google Apps into their world-class managed desktop services, bringing email and collaboration tools to employees of large enterprises who do not currently have the right tools (or any tools, in some cases).

We're very excited about this, since it means many of our larger customers will have access to the high-quality services and support that Capgemini provides to its clients. Thousands of large, medium, and small organization are adopting Google Apps daily, and this partnership now gives larger enterprises--who often have very specialized requirements--a new choice of a trusted advisor to help them make the transition.

For details on what Capgemini is offering, I suggest going directly to the source: