In the beginning, there was Yahoo!. And it was good. It was everyone’s browser homepage. And everyone’s search engine. And everyone’s email address. It still quite is.
Undoubtably the shining example of that weird company name which gives you no clue what it does. But it is also that Internet startup with the simplest of ideas creating the largest of corporations.
Yahoo! is actually an acronym for “Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle” (among other things), while a yahoo generally means rude, unsophisticated, and uncouth.
What started out as a simple listing of favorite links on the web, Jerry and David’s Guide to the World Wide Web, grew larger and larger: first as a directory limited only for Stanford students, then it was opened to everyone. Started in February 1994, it made one million hits by the fall of the same year. By April 1995, Sequoia Capital had agreed to invest $2 million.
Yahoo! lists its creators’ positions as:
Yang, Jerry, Co-founder, Chief Yahoo and Director
Filo, David, Co-founder and Chief Yahoo
We love our egroups (formerly eGroups.com), photos (Yahoo! Photos and recently acquired flickr), 360Â° (its own spin on the social networking craze, taking advantage of what everyone has â€“ Yahoo! ID’s), amateur homepages (remember when Geocities had no Yahoo! logo on it?), music, desktop widgets (formerly Konfabulator), social bookmarking (recently acquired del.icio.us), games, regional and international content, email, and of course, instant messaging (avatars, emoticons, and a whole new language).
People want it accessible and fast â€” without having to look far. And so Yahoo! complies, with all its content and services. Portals became hits. And though many believe how immature (read: cluttered) a webpage looks tells a lot about a company, many trends are making comebacks.
Footnote: Yahoo logo generated by Logo54.com, edited in Photoshop.