Happy Birthday, Sergey Brin: You Got Us Googling Around The Clock !


We all know that habits are hard to get off and especially when it starts becoming an integral part of life. Who had ever thought that on September 15, 1997, there would be two 20-somethings, who would transform our defaults and rattle our routines. That is the day when Larry Page and Sergey Brin, registered Google.com. As seen by its innovations and products, Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL) as a company is pretty engineering focused.

Being worth $31.7 Billion at 41, is not the only achievement Sergey Mikhaylovich Brin, the Co-founder and Director Of Special Projects (now known as GoogleX) at Google has. His list of achievements is interesting and quite extensive. Born to a Soviet mathematician economist and earning a mathematics and computer science undergraduate degree at the University of Maryland, it seems rather obvious today that Sergey was destined to have a passion for technology, solving problems and building innovative products.

Name: Sergey Brin
Date of Birth: August 21, 1973
Net Worth Today: $33.8 Billion

It all started in 1995 when at Stanford University, Sergey, age 21, is assigned to show Larry, age 22, around the campus and figured that the tastes of the two were so different. They never agreed on each other’s points of view. An year later, time saw the two becoming fast friends and deciding to collaborate on a search engine algorithm.

The rather less known facts about Google make it evident how the two maverick visionaries Larry and Sergey increased our expectations beyond imagination.

1. The Search engine product built from 1995 on the Stanford serves in their dorm by Larry and Sergey, was called BackRub. They had also developed the PageRank algorithm, which in 1997, got Excite investor Vinod Khosla to offer to buy them out. There is still a debate if the offer price was $350,000 or $1.6 million.

2. Google Inc. was incorporated on September 4, 1998.

3. Angel investor Ram Shiriram who was, at first, skeptical about the world needing a sixth Search Engine, brought in another three investors and invested in Google after Andy Bechtolsheim, founder of Sun Microsystems wrote a cheque for $100,000 which was not enough for Larry and Sergey to start their company. Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon gave Google $250,000 at four cents a share in 1998, because he just fell in love with Larry and Sergey.

4. When Andy gave their first investment cheque, Larry and Sergey had a tough time encashing it as it was written to Google Inc. and they did not have a registered company as yet.

5. June 7, 1999, Google received $25 million in Equity Funding from Sequoia Capital and Kleiner Perkins Lead Investment, after rejecting each one’s demand for an exclusive deal, not wanting to give anyone total control.

6. By September of 2000, Google had indexed a Billion URLs and was available in 15 languages.

7. Eric Schmidt, a diplomatic businessman and technologist, was hired as the CEO of Google due to the pressure of their investors Micheal Moritz, Sequoia Capital and John Doerr, Kleiner Perkins. Larry and Sergey had wished to make their hero, Steve Jobs, their CEO.

8. By May 2002, Google had forged a partnership with AOL, which lead to AOL replacing Overture Service advertising with Google pay-per-click Ads and their search Inktomi with Google Search.

9. Aug 19, 2004 Google’s IPO placed its share just over $100 per share, which was set through an auction and that made Google a $23 million company.

10. By July 2006, users were uploading 65,000 videos per day on YouTube and that prompted Google to buy out YouTube for $1.65 billion on October 9, 2006.

11. Google had clocked $50.18 billion in revenue by 2012. Around the same time, Larry Page took over as CEO from Eric Schmidt and Sergey Brin was responsible for new products.

12. Google’s VP for Infrastructure recently announced that they would be investing $300 million dollars, in an undersea cable with a record 60 Terabits per second speed that will connect the US to Japan and provide better speeds to Asian consumers via its Google Fiber network.

Now for interesting facts about Sergey Brin:

1. As a student at Stanford University, Sergey experimented with lock-picking techniques. His other love was performing as a trapeze artist, which he couldn’t pursue.

2. Sergey’s big interest was taking all the pages on the World Wide Web and trying to make sense of it and find patterns.

3. The famously sparse (only search bar) home page was originally designed by Sergey Brin.

4. The ‘I’m Feeling Lucky‘ button was actually designed by Brin to allow the user to jump right to their desired answer without having had to go through the search results. However, it did not seem to work as imagined. However, removing the button, which is not really used a lot, did see a dip in the traffic and so it was retained.

5. Sergey Brin was officially on leave from Stanford, even though both he and Page dropped out of college after inventing BackRub and changing its name to Google.

6. Brin reveals his inspiration secrets, the two books that motivated him to build a career to imbibe creativity to bring in innovation in one of the interviews conducted by the Academy of Achievement in 2000 when Google was just 4 years. The two are “Surely You’re Joking Mr. Feynman!” by Richard P. Feynman and “Snow Crash” by Neal Stephenson.  These books inspired him to shape a career blending both creativity and technology.

7. Sergey Brin received the Marconi Foundation Prize, the “Highest Award in Engineering”, and was elected Fellow of the Marconi Foundation at Columbia University, along with Larry Page, in 2004.

8. Sergey Brin was the youngest member of the Forbes 400 richest people in the world in 2004, at age 31. He was ranked No. 21 in 2013.

9. Sergey Brin is also ranked among the top 20 Billionaires of the World by Forbes and No.14 in the United States.

10. Sergey Brin was an executive producer of the 2007 film Broken Arrows, a story of love and a struggle over the virtues of free will versus destiny.

11. In early 2013, New Yorkers were in for a treat when Sergey Brin was spotted on the NYC Subway wearing Google Glass.

12. Sergey Brin and Anna Wojcicki, his then wife, donated $53 million to the Michael J. Fox Foundation in February 2014, as part of the Brin-Wojcicki challenge to fight Parkinson’s disease.

13. Sergey has also contributed $500,000 to the Wikimedia Foundation in costs for Wikipedia through his Brin-Wojcicki Foundation and the foundation made it to No.25 of The Chronicles Philanthropy 50 list of the biggest charitable donors.

14. It was a Golden Friday when Sergey Brin along with his $ 400 company reaped huge profits that saw a leap of 16% in one day accounting for $ 96,00 per second on July 17th, Friday 2015. The mammoth numbers were witnessed soon after the search engine released the second-quarter results.

With him being in charge of products like Google Glass, Self-driven Cars and the likes, we are sure to see a lot more coming to us and solving real life hassles. We wish Sergey Brin, a wonderful year of spontaneous innovation to better the world.

Happy Birthday, Sergey Brin!

Do make use of comment section and congratulate Sergey Brin on his birthday.

[Last Updated: 21 August 2015]

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