Join CCC’s Chris Kenneally on a tour of a secretive lair where some of the world’s greatest engineering and entrepreneurial minds plot the campaigns of a global empire. The place is the Googleplex, Mountain View, California; our guide is Steven Levy, author of “In the Plex,” out this spring from Simon & Schuster.
A senior writer for “Wired” and previously author of several books examining the goings-on in Silicon Valley including “Insanely Great,” about Apple, and “Hackers: Heroes from the Computer Revolution,” Steven Levy first wrote about Google in February 1999 for Newsweek. The long relationship he has developed with the company has afforded deeper access as a journalist than almost anyone else.
“I came to understand the products of Google are characters in themselves in the book,” Levy told Kenneally. “To understand how search works and how the Google ad model works, gives you insight not only into those products, but the people behind them and the values behind Google.”
Last month, Google unveiled its latest social media offering, Google+, which Levy was privy to while the project was being developed under the code name, “Emerald Sea,” but unable to write about in detail in his book because it wasn’t yet released (his reporting is now available on Steven Levy’s blog post at wired.com). “We’ve only seen the beginnings of Google+ now. There are a lot of shoes to drop,” Levy said. “Google thought they could do it in 100 days. It took almost a year. But they’re delighted at the response it’s gotten.”