Just Google it, don’t ask me

Last Friday, I was at Startup Grind held at the gorgeous Micorosoft Research lab, Bangalore, India. As usual, several things happened there – networking etc. Of all, one of the key things that stood out for me was Hari Karunanidhi’s interview. Hari is the founder of two kick-ass companies, Interview Street and Hacker Rank.

When asked about how he hires developers for his company, he mentioned several huddles the applicants have to be scale before giving a chance to work with them. Things like a 3 day camp at Hari’s house/office, a task to develop an app with a programming language you’ve never used before etc etc.Then, at the end, Hari mentioned something funny – Google search. You’ll wonder what Google search has to do with being a bad-ass developer. Well, as for Hari, it’s the most important skill you have to demonstrate. It doesn’t matter how many lines of code you know and can write, if you’re not a master Googler, you don’t fit his company. Simple. “It’s what I do everyday” says Hari.

The next question you may ask is “how does Hari spot this skill in applicants?” It’s very simple, if an applicant asks him too much questions (not specific to his companies), he doesn’t have the ‘googling’ skill. Period. He said, most of the question people ask are actually available online, so “why ask me”. “If the question is googleable, don’t ask me”. He doesn’t want to spend half of his day answering questions with tons of answers online.

Now, that confirmed what I’ve believed for a long time. It sort of turns me off when friends who have access to super-fast internet ask me simple questions that have already been answered on thousands of pages and posts all over the internet. Why ask me when you can easily ask Google. You know, people email you to ask for stuffs, why can’t they use the same energy and internet connection used to send the email to ask Google. Isn’t it faster and easier that way?

The new think before you leap (talk) is Google before you talk.

I remember few months ago, when I was picked for an impromptu debate on a topic with a grammar I’ve never heard before, sincerely. All participants were given about 5 mins to get set (or think about the topic). While other participants thought the best way to spend the 5 minutes break was to sit and think, I chose to employ a better strategy. So, I brought out my Blackberry, launched my browser and asked Google. Voila. I discovered the bogus word was actually a familiar phenomenon made complex with a ‘not-so-big’ big word. Others were still trying to understand what it meant when the facilitator called it off.

I beat them flawlessly. I looked super intelligent. Well, thanks to Google. Again, think before you talk is now Google before you talk.

Depending on the search terms you use, Google probably has the answer to most of your doubts. In fact, there is an entire team at Google HQ dedicated to making your answers more fresh and relevant to your queries. So, why not take advantage?

So, before mailing me about any issue/question, ensure you’ve done your part by Googling to the core. With several attempts, good use of words and smart combination of words, you’ll most likely land on the answer. Not a completely easy task, but definitely worthwhile.

Emm, before you ask me “how do I combine the right search terms for optimum results on Google”, well you already know my answer to that. Plain simple. Ask Google.

Technopreneur. Chief Hustler at 1Plify. PhD scholar [Technology entrepreneurship]

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