Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Windmills and Robot Cars Are Great! But Time to Talk About Google's Ad Business

There are plenty of sober and sophisticated ways to predict the results of Google’s Q3 earnings today. Here’s my guy-on-a-barstool method: Eric Schmidt and company must have fantastic numbers to show us. Otherwise, why  spend the last week talking about everything but their real business?

Robot cars! Wind farms! And since the press release won’t hit the wires until this afternoon, there’s still time for Google (GOOG) to tell us about the consumer jet pack technology it’s been secretly testing in Siberia.

If Google does fall flat today, then the company”s emphasis on its “things that don’t make us money” unit seems like a liability–the kind of thing you want to button up in advance of an earnings call.

But note that Wall Street seems to have plenty of confidence in the ad giant: GOOG is up $8, to $544, since the company began rolling out its space-age announcements over the weekend.

Like your Google analysis a bit more polished? Fine–here’s Citigroup (C) ace Mark Mahaney’s quarterly cheat sheet. I’ll be back this afternoon for more knuckle-dragging (click to enlarge):

[Image credit: Steve Jurvetson]

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work