Bets Are Off
We Chose Scott Prentice over Google
By Bonnie Britt
Chair, Bay Area Editors' Forum
May 2, 2004
Before Silicon Valley again goes gaga (irrationally
exuberant) over Google's pending IPO, we at editorsforum.org
want the world to know how we feel about Scott Prentice over at
Leximation, Inc. We admire Scott's work and he has our deeply
felt appreciation. Here's why:
According to an article May 2, 2004 in the Los Angeles Times, "The
thing that made Google Inc. famous isn't what's making it rich.
... 95% of Google's nearly $1 billion in sales last year came
from advertising. ...Google is becoming the advertising agency
for the Internet. Nearly one-fifth of all online advertising
dollars spent last year flowed through the Mountain View,
When the Editors' Forum migrated to our new Web pages in 2004, we
installed Google to search all of our site pages that are not a part
of our Database of Editors, which showcases the services of our
members and has a separate search engine.
With Google installed, we quickly realized it was a train wreck
for us because ads for nonmember editorial services
turned up every time it was searched. Like so much online
advertising these days, Google uses the searched-for words to
generate in-kind advertising. We quickly smacked ourselves on
our collective head, and concluded that we don't want a search
engine that spits up ads that compete for business with our own
We looked around for search engine developers. I was way over
my head discussing the fine points of search engine technology
when our treasurer, Virginia Rich, confided that Scott Prentice was leaving
Autodesk, after more than a decade, to strike out on his own.
Scott had been TechPubs Tools Developer at Autodesk, where he
developed and maintained applications and processes that enable
employees to complete their tasks more efficiently.
Applications that he authored are used throughout Autodesk
publishing departments (in AutoCAD, AutoCAD Map, AutoCAD Civil,
and others) for both content creation and localization into 19
languages (including, European, Eastern European, Nordic, and
I spoke with Scott the weekend after he set out on his own and
explained what we needed. Scott listened carefully and
volunteered to develop a search engine with no outside
advertising for our pages. As winter turned to spring, we
tried it out then worked with him to refine its capabilities.
Please wander over to Leximation, Inc. to bookmark the services of
Scott Prentice for times when there's something you're doing in
FrameMaker or Word or other software that you wish could be automated.
The man at the helm is a skilled technical writer and programmer. He's low-key and the man to see for tools and solutions for print and online publishing.