Google cleans house, tosses out products

Google has announced the latest list of products being tossed out as part of a drive by chief executive Larry Page to focus resources on more promising projects.

"We're in the process of shutting a number of products which haven't had the impact we'd hoped for, integrating others as features into our broader product efforts, and ending several which have shown us a different path forward," Google operations senior vice president Urs Holzle said in a blog post.

A "Renewable Energy Cheaper than Coal" initiative launched to drive down the cost of generating solar power was listed among the Google undertakings being nixed.

"We've published our results to help others in the field continue to advance the state of power tower technology, and we've closed our efforts," Holzle said.

"At this point, other institutions are better positioned than Google to take this research to the next level," he added.

Google will continue getting power from renewable energy sources and investing in those kinds of technologies.

The California-based internet titan also said that the Wave collaborative communication tool it stopped developing more than a year ago would finally hit the beach and be gone at the end of April next year.

That is also the time that Knol, which was launched in 2007 as a platform that let people collaborate online to create in-depth articles focused on their areas of expertise, will stop being viewable online.

Google said it taking part in a collaboration to transform Knol into Annotum, an open-source scholarly authoring and publishing platform based on WordPress. Knol content will stop being available in October of next year.

Timeline, Gears, Bookmark Lists and Friend Connect features were also being eliminated or incorporated in other Google products, according to Holzle.

Google has been shedding products since co-founder Larry Page took over as chief executive this year and began concentrating resources on promising projects.

Google last month announced the ends of online news reader Fast Flip, social search service Aardvark, commenting tool Sidewiki and several other products.

- AFP

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