I've been wondering this for a while. It started back when I learned that Google bought many of the sites they now boast having. For the longest time, I loved Google because I thought they were so innovative. They created a new IM client, a new photo manager, a new mail client, etc. But now it just seems like alot of that is a sham.
Did you know that Google bought Picasa? How about the documents part of Google Docs? Or Google Voice? Feedburner? Picnik? Google Maps? I shouldn't even have to mention YouTube.
Is it innovative that Google Talk uses the XMPP client? Or that Android started off as being based of the Linux kernel? Or that ChromeOS uses the Linux kernel?
I'm not really being that picky, like I'm not saying "Google Wave is written in Java! It's nothing new!!!" I'm just thinking, XMPP is an IM Client Protocol, so is writing an IM Client based off that really new? Linux has been around for years and if anyone in the world would have to resources to create an actual system other than the big three that are used nowadays (Mac OS, Windows, and Linux), it's flipping Google. They could've even created their own OS based of Unix a la OS X, but no, they chose Linux: the kernel that any joe shmo can build off of.
I love Google, I really do. But really I started to question them when they came out with Google Buzz. I mean, for godsakes, it was announced and released in the same day. And I'm 90% sure it was written entirely in the week before. It's a Twitter knockoff. That's all it is.
I know that a bunch of people don't trust Google, and I respect that; I trust Google and like them, but it seems kinda like figuring out your childhood sports hero takes steroids. (Ok, I didn't have a childhood sports hero, so I'm just assuming that this is what it feels like.) I'm certainly not saying that Google buying stuff is bad, because they've chosen some really great products to buy and usually their vision just adds to that. But it would be nice to see some genuine innovation every now and then. If Microsoft isn't going to do it and Apple is going to do it for way too much $$$, it would be nice if a third party would step up and get in the game as well.
An undying Google fan,