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Google CEO Eric Schmidt Joins Apple's Board Of Directors

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Google CEO Eric Schmidt's looking for another small company to help run -- this time, Apple. He's just been elected to Apple's board of directors.

Google CEO Dr. Eric Schmidt Joins Apple's Board of Directors is the press release on the move, with these quotes from the two main men:

"Eric is obviously doing a terrific job as CEO of Google, and we look forward to his contributions as a member of Apple's board of directors," said Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO. "Like Apple, Google is very focused on innovation and we think Eric's insights and experience will be very valuable in helping to guide Apple in the years ahead."

"Apple is one of the companies in the world that I most admire," said Eric Schmidt. "I'm really looking forward to working with Steve and Apple's board to help with all of the amazing things Apple is doing."

Google CEO elected to Apple Computer board of directors from the AFP has the expected (and reasonable) speculation that this will mean closer ties for Google and Apple.

The Wall Street Journal in Google CEO Schmidt Joins Apple Computer Board (paid sub. probably required) notes some of the cross-pollination going on:

Mr. Schmidt's election deepens existing high-level personal ties between the two companies. Genentech Inc. CEO Arthur Levinson sits on the Google and Apple boards, while former Vice President Al Gore and Intuit Inc. Chairman Bill Campbell, both Apple directors, are longtime advisers to Google. Mr. Schmidt's appointment means half of Apple's eight-person board of directors has a formal relationship with Google.

Messrs. Schmidt and Jobs also share the battle scars from long careers competing against Microsoft, Redmond, Wash. Mr. Schmidt, one of Silicon Valley's most seasoned technologists, spent more than a dozen years at Sun Microsystems Inc. starting in 1983, rising to the post of chief technology officer during that computer maker's fierce efforts to establish the Java programming language as an alternative to Microsoft's dominant programming standards. Mr. Schmidt joined Novell Inc., a bitter Microsoft rival in the market for network software, in 1997 as chairman and CEO.

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