Google Maps co-founder explains his move to Facebook

The Sydney-based co-founder of Google Maps has spoken for the first time about his decision to jump ship to Facebook. Mr Rasmussen announced late last week he would make the move to Facebook after six years at Google’s Australian offices.

In 2003, the 34-year-old co-founded mapping startup "Where 2 Technologies" in Sydney with his brother Jens. A year later, the company was purchased by Google and its technologies used to form Google’s now ubiquitous online mapping service. Mr Rasmussen is also credited as the brains behind the online collaboration tool Google Wave, which was shut down by the search giant in August after user numbers failed to reach expected levels. 

In an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald, Mr Rasmussen said a personal pitch from Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg helped secure his place at the social networking giant. At last count, Facebook has more than 500 million users worldwide. ‘‘I think if you were to ask me two or three years ago if Facebook was going to be this big, I wouldn't have picked it. And I have a great deal to learn there from Mark and his team,’’ he said.

As part of the move, Mr Rasmussen will relocate to San Francisco to take up his new position next month. The 34-year-old is far from the first Googler to switch allegiance, Facebook chief technology officer (CTO) Bret Taylor and platform manager, Carl Sjogreen are both ex-employees of the Big G. Asked to explain the reasoning behind his departure from Google, Mr Rasmussen said he was keen to work at a company with a smaller employee base - Facebook employs around 1700 people, compared to Google's 25,000 employees worldwide. A lucrative pay offer was also a factor, he said.

It's been widely reported that Google is scrambling to stem a flood of employees making the move to the house that Zuckerberg built, with one analyst suggesting up to 20% of Facebook employees are ex-Googlers.

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Ugh... Try to find a company with even worse privacy issues than Google, and you'll find Facebook. Facebook didn't even bother to ban the Zynga games despite being discovered to leak private information they weren't supposed to, simply because it pays Facebook too well to have them there. Facebook did punish smaller, less commonly used, games, though. That doesn't do as much damage to Facebook, after all.

This goes to say quite a bit, and it's happening every day over there.

http://www.develop-online.net/...its-millions-of-Zynga-users

Also: "The group insisted that the IDs shared to third parties will not allow “access to anyone's private information."

True, but they aren't satisfied with only getting the ID's of course... This can easily be seen if you check up what information the games you play require you to share.

jinishans said,
Facebook is going to be the next Microsoft, hence people want to jump on board early

Seriously? LOL Google is much closer to being "the next Microsoft" than Facebook is. In fact, I don't even see how that statement can even be taken seriously as Facebook is merely a social platform. There's nothing to it other than socialization and a few stupidly lame games such as Farmville. Google has mobile phones, an abundance of different software including but not limited to browsers and an OS.

Please elaborate because I just don't get your comment....it doesn't make any sense.

Lol at these peeps keep saying something or another to be the next MS. MS is still the gorilla in the room and no company is going to take its place anytime soon. Google is evil, FB is for stalking, and bla bla blah...

nekkidtruth said,

Seriously? LOL Google is much closer to being "the next Microsoft" than Facebook is. In fact, I don't even see how that statement can even be taken seriously as Facebook is merely a social platform. There's nothing to it other than socialization and a few stupidly lame games such as Farmville. Google has mobile phones, an abundance of different software including but not limited to browsers and an OS.

Please elaborate because I just don't get your comment....it doesn't make any sense.

Haters are going to hate. Capitalism is apparently becoming the new "F word." People do not seem to understand that businesses make decisions off of what is best financialy for them. It is also what is best for the workers financialy. If the company goes out of business... so do the employees.

jinishans said,
Facebook is going to be the next Microsoft, hence people want to jump on board early
Facebook's market capitalization is only around 10 to 20 billion dollar while Microsoft is over 200 billion dollar. Can't see that happening very soon. Plus they make ony a fraction of profit Microsoft does.

Maybe they'll be able to help mold Google-friendly policies at Facebook. Google isn't stupid... Facebook will become a gMinion within 5 years. Once Zuckerberg is completely surrounded with Googlers, he won't be able to collaborate with the Msfts et al.. Or maybe not.

majg said,
Maybe they'll be able to help mold Google-friendly policies at Facebook. Google isn't stupid... Facebook will become a gMinion within 5 years. Once Zuckerberg is completely surrounded with Googlers, he won't be able to collaborate with the Msfts et al.. Or maybe not.

Really?
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB119323518308669856.html

Microsoft and Facebook are very close, as in Microsoft helped them out in 2007 to keep their cash flow alive and kept Facebook alive. Microsoft technically owns a share of Facebook, and has integrated it into everything from Windows 7 Live Essentials and Live.com to WinPhone7, while it did away with their own MSN social features that were in competition with Facebook.

Google is trying to suck up to Facebook; however, their 'Google Buzz' put a lot of bad blood between the two.

Facebook's developers and CEO have also been very vocal with their disdain for Google and their disdain for the Android platform, especially when they were complaining how horrid it was to develop for in comparison to the iOS or any modern OS.

As for Microsoft and Facebook, the only change that could be seen as negative is when Facebook moved to all in-house advertising, thus removing Microsoft supplied ads. However, this wasn't a shot to Microsoft, it was Facebook moving its business model forward to meet their revenue needs.

Since then, you will notice that Facebook and Bing (Microsoft) recently joined forces on social searching integration.

Even if things do go south between the companies, the worst that would happen would be the relationship that Microsoft has with Apple, and despite what most people think, Microsoft makes a lot of money off of Office and Win7 sales to Apple customers and Apple enjoys not being sued to death by Microsoft for patent infringment, which goes back to their 1990s agreement, which oddly was when Microsoft invested money in Apple to keep them alive at the time when cash flow was a problem for them too.

Well google wave was a total failure, and google maps was just a web based version of google earth (which is much better!)

Probably it was more a "push" than a jump!