Google's "More wood behind fewer arrows" means well, but reminds me of Sun's marketing

Date: Sat Apr 26 2014 Sun Microsystems »»»» Focus »»»» Google »»»» Wood and Arrows

Bill Coughran, SVP for Research and Systems Infrastructure at Google just posted a blog post, More Wood Behind Fewer Arrows, that announced they'd be shutting down "Google Labs". The announcement sounds like they're meaning to convey a focus on developing great services, but it really reminds me of the dead hardware maker Sun Microsystems.

A bunch of people have decided to get alarmed over this because of the Labs features in GMAIL. For them: Update 3:36pm: To clarify: we don't have any plans to change in-product experimentation channels like Gmail Labs or Maps Labs. We'll continue to experiment with new features in each of our products. Calm down. Have some chamomile tea. Take a walk and smell the real world.

Anyway.. about the Sun/Google connection here. Sun, before they decided they were the dot in dot-com, they famously made all sorts of marketing images with the mantra "all the wood behind one arrow". For Sun that seamed to mean they would support only Solaris, and not adopt other operating systems, like Windows or Linux.

Perhaps the refusal to adopt Windows or Linux led to the death of Sun.

In any case .. this message from Google is saying essentially the same thing -- all the wood behind one arrow. Makes one wonder, did Bill Coughran have any role at Sun?

It's seemed that some of Sun's ex-employees found themselves at Google. For example many Android engineers had worked on JavaFX at Sun, and as a result the Android strategy is extremely similar to the JavaFX strategy but Google is carrying it out much better than did the JavaFX team at Sun. (disclosure: For a longish period I worked next to the JavaFX team, and my last 6 months was inside the JavaFX team)