General discussion


Gmail initiative! A viable business model!

By Dr. Al Olaimi ·
Recently Google announced the Gmail project initiation. And I?ve been reading most of those who got involved in discussing Google entry to such venture. I would summarize all responders? comments into 3 categories:
1. How would Google be able to stop spam
2. how Google would benefit financially (business model)
3. how far Google would go in supporting such large storage.

Some other minor comments included other issues which are not less important in their own merits, yet still fall into one of the three previous categories, i.e. Google messenger (Gim), personalization of accounts, portals and so forth.

In an attempt to give myself a starting point, I thought of it in a macro prospective, thus I would go for answering question #2 first, then justify #3, ending with an attempt to describe an effective method in blocking spam (theoretically).

A. The moment that Google was recognized for its superior search engine, they were able to provide net- demographics, usage behavior, aggressive proactive capture and comparison for all in-listed web pages, changes pre and post changes as per monitored traffic. An extremely important statistical analysis reports for to the content about search patterns to advertisers would easily be available. Such self-positioning by Google would only be described comparably as ?the modern age censes department?, but this time it?s global near real-time coverage!

Once Google develop a scan technique that would scan the contents of emails, Google shall be able to provide even more analytical prospective, but this time supported with factual figures about their findings. Even though anonymity is assured, still scanning email contents is not going to be a crime since what is sought are merely patterns not intimate details ? something in the nature of an added value virus scanning ?.

Henceforth, the ultimate behavioral analysis tool for measuring human-web interactivity and usability is geared up to be delivered to mass marketing and advertisement centric organizations, only after merging both email and user search patterns! But what if we could add to it the preset user-requested news letters and interests? Therefore, the only natural progress is to have personalization touch intact to it e.g. semi-portal coupled with peer to peer messaging. Voila, we got the basic building block for a business model that is indeed promising.

Regardless to the fact that offering 1 GB free sounds appealing, yet it is possible to cause a churn in competitors? serious users who are dependant on long term retention of some ?valuable? emails. I can not see Google spending much on what already was invested hardware wise, as simple calculation to thousands of servers already installed, it is easier to calculate the storage that was already bundled and installed. For our argument purposes, I would consider an average of 60 GB of storage was provided per server ? very classical figure ?, and should be there 10,000 server running, then this would be considered enough for serving 600,000 clients immediately only if they are going to use there allowed quota in full, which is impossible to reach during the first 6 months of full deployment of Gmail! All statistics leads to the sold fact that the average user/customer would use no more than one third of his/her quota (given the fact that larger than 2 MB multi-media attachments? transfer is prohibited to avoid possible copy rights violation). This would translate into an immediate doubling to the size of client base! Shall figures change I would presume it will reflect better forecasting in favor Google.

Not to mention if Gmail offers POP3 and IMAP accessibility that would push more users to ?clean? their accounts and move their ?contents? into their own ?local hard drives?, another increase in storage space that would translate into more quota for other potential subscribers.

However, the investment will be defiantly on the band width usability. Nevertheless, Gmail would be ready to be shipped as a corporate solution with a little bit of value additives to it. Shall we say a MS-Exchange competitor is in the horizon?

B. As for blocking spam, I would believe the only effective way to prevent spam is not to install spam ?reception? blockers software/tools, instead install a spam initiator blocking mechanism. This would require a miniature scanner as an extension to mail servers, only to scan the content of any bulk email at sending time ? only possible through buffering all bulk mail to given enough time for the scanner to work effectively ?, Shall content of the buffered bulk email match with a rate of 90-100% along with a variable recipient?s list, then it is clearly a spam.

The only method to develop such tool would be to have the right proven technology of ?search engine?. Do we need to guess what would be the most superior search engine running so far?

Although the subject is not rounded up entirely, I am pretty much sure that I already flooded the discussion area with enough words, especially after writing this article one shot non-stop!

Shall be any comments, I would appreciate very much if it is shared with me by sending it directly to my email because I am a constant TechRepublic newsletter reader, but not that much of visitor to discussion areas.

Thank you

Dr. Al Olaimi

This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

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Fuzzy Minds

by Lanre In reply to Grammar

Why not confess that you find it difficult to follow the train of though and ideas contained in the paper.....instad of acting like .......

Please stick to substance instead of hittingo ut blindly like a blinded.......

fill in the blank spaces.....if u will

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by generalist In reply to Gmail initiative! A viabl ...

My initial thought was that this was an April Fool's joke. Between the spelling problems and some of the phrasing, it is pretty amusing.

Of course, the date of the posting doesn't support the idea.

Digging deeper, some of the concepts proposed seem a little odd. For example, the spam blocking concept of using 'initiator' blockers as opposed to 'reception' blockers might work if ALL mail systems had them. But getting that type of system into place would be virtually impossible unless you have some pretty draconian 'email' police forces roaming the world and using force to shut down 'renegade' mail servers.

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One solution to the scanning issue

by jdc1110 In reply to Gmail initiative! A viabl ...

I plan to at least try out gmail. The potential amount of free storage is too good to pass up. As for allowing Google to scan the e-mails, all e-mails I send using Google will be encrypted, so scanning them for keywords won't do them much good.

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Google Utility

by edjcox In reply to Gmail initiative! A viabl ...

A simple matter of encrypting all content stored on google.

They will not allow that, I'm sure.

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I think it depends on how much of their server space is encrypted

by bob21 In reply to Google Utility

If a small percentage of the material is encrypted, either on a personnal account, or globally, I'm sure it won't bother them. It would probably bother them if a majority of people encrypted all their e-mail, or if a majority of everyone's e-mail was encrypted.

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We're all Microserfs in the Digital World

by chmod777 In reply to Gmail initiative! A viabl ...

I think Google is a great search engine but now I also think they are a terrible company.

This is another example of Tycoon wannabees treating the general public like a bunch of serfs who's only purpose is to be exploited. The "free email for ads" offer is a good business model but sets a frightening precident, and establishes a dangerous status quo. To give up your right to privacy in any circumstance is helping to create a society where anyone can access any information they wish, with no laws or common consensus to stop them.

Corporations and government agencies would love this, along with criminals. pranksters and vengeful enemies.

And what benefit are ads to the person receiving them? I personally would much rather go to a good portal to find products than be constantly harrassed by ads I did not want. Originally I began using the Internet TO GET AWAY FROM COMMERCIALISM!!!

Cyberspace is being taken over by carpet-baggers and exploitationists that are only out to get rich, and could care less about establishing good standards and fair netiquette. Sadly, Google is now counted among them.

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WOW! Talk about paranoid

by NewfoundLuck In reply to We're all Microserfs in t ...

Come on man! It's not an invasion of privacy if they tell you about it ahead of time and you have the option of using or not using their service. If you think there are cameras in the bathroom, go to a different bathroom.

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by Steven Booth In reply to We're all Microserfs in t ...

This doesn't really seem all that bad?

Like some of the theme here, don't like it don't use it. It's not being force on you.

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"Free" e-mail

by TheChas In reply to We're all Microserfs in t ...

Read the user agreement for almost any "free" on-line e-mail service.

Google isn't doing anything new aside from upping the ante on user space.

If you want mail that is relatively free from prying eyes, use security envelopes and snail mail.

ALL electronic communication is subject to review and getting into undesirable hands.


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Snail mail plus

by generalist In reply to "Free" e-mail

You can always use snail mail and send CDs that are encrypted if you want really secure things.

And if you want to take things a step further, send a DVD that has 99.99% garbage on it, encrypted.

Of course, that might get you into trouble with Homeland Security or even a corporation.

Security by spamming and encryption...

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