Philosophical Ranting of an Engineer

A Response to Google Profiles

December 20th, 2007

A few days ago Google announced they are going to be integrating their Google Profile across (all?) their web applications. This is the profile you use to login into Gmail, orkut, Google Talk and so on. Before now some of these were linked, your GTalk account and your Gmail account for example but now this will be connected to your Blogger account as well as to some applications that didn’t have profiles previously, Google Maps for example.

My first reaction is, “do I really want my information and each of my “Google identities” merging? In the same way that I don’t want my shopping habits and my social calendar to mix (see Facebook Beacon), I’m not sure I want people who read my blog to know my Gtalk account or know how to find my Shared Stuff. And if I already have accounts on these previously independent applications will they be automatically combined or can I opt-in?

On the other hand, many of Google’s application already seem to work together, partially because several of their applications are already linked: Gmail, Gtalk, etc.

The biggest conclusion to all of this is that I might be able to log in to my Orkut account of which I’ve surely forgotten my password.


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