If the cornerstone of growth is frequent innovation, then equally illustrative of a company's strategy are the gravestones: markers of the products that didn't work. A willingness to allow unproductive bits of a businesses to join the great majority suggests a determination to move quickly, boldly ahead. For this reason, Google GOOG +0.32% can seem downright mortiferous at some moments. It kills off little-used products the way Richard III dispatched political rivals–sometimes two at a time.
The dirt is already on the coffin for another: Google Reader. Google closed the RSS feed this morning. The reader joins the same fate as more than a dozen others.