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Google at 15: More Growth Ahead

Catching up with the early Googlers

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Scott Budman helps celebrate Googles 15th birthday by interviewing one of the early employees.

    It's been 15 years since Google hit the scene, and unlike some tech veterans, the search engine giant is still a growing and vibrant part of the Silicon Valley scene.

    So are the people who started Google. Larry and Sergey, obviously, are still at the company. Marissa Mayer is famously running Yahoo! And, while you may not know the name Georges Harik, you doubtlessly use products he had a hand in creating.

    MORE: Google Celebrates 15th Birthday With New Doodle

    Georges left SGI to become Google's seventh employee. He helped develop ads on search, GMail, and convinced the founders to buy Android. So ... pretty much everything he touched turned to gold, along with his stock options.

    Laurels, it should be said, that Georges has refused to sit on. We caught up with him at imo, a communications platform Georges is helping to grow and develop. He says he, like so many other Googlers who are still active in tech, "are motivated by making a difference." He says his thrill, to this day, is "to take something new, and put it into the world."

    In a nice touch, Georges was ordering lunch for his startup from Calafia, a Bay Area restaurant started by Charlie Ayers, who gained fame as Google's first chef.

    A little synchronicity, from someone who worked hard to connect people.

     And what better way to celebrate than with one of the company's popular Google Doodles?

    Friday's doodle featured a popular birthday game where the user controls the second letter "g" in Google's name to hit a piñata and get points.

    The anniversary also heralded another improvement from Google: The search engine giant has updated the algorithm it uses for searches, calling it "Hummingbird." The new algorithm allows Google to quickly analyze full questions and to identify and rank the answers to those questions with search results. 

    Google is now the world's number-one search engine with its own name eponymous with searching something on the Internet. Originally dubbed BackRub, the company changed its name to Google, derived from a misspelling of the word googol, which refers to the number one followed by one hundred zeroes.

    Vishal Persaud contributed to this report.

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