The Rise of the Google Empire

Google is using its billions to invest in technology that monitors everything we do. We already have our search engine history and email stored on servers—but Google is going a step further. In their largest acquisition ever, they’re paying 3.2 billion for Nest Labs. 

This company produces thermostats, smoke detectors, and soon all sorts of home-based "intelligent" wireless devices that will collect data to be controlled with a smartphone. With the expected advancements in this technology, Google will know when you’re home and can monitor the activities hooked to the “intelligent” devices.

Last year, Google’s vast financial resources scooped up nearly 2000 US patents. 

When Google acquired Motorola, they became interested in the patent for Motorola’s “temporary tattoo” identification patches. This little skin mark can store tons a plethora of personal data.
Read more here.

But what happens when a company worth billions buys out a fledgling robot company?  Google made the lucrative leap into the robotic world by acquiring Boston Dynamics, a robotics research company. Boston Dynamic’s founder Marc Raibert is ecstatic for Google’s financial resources.  Just imagine how Google’s billion-dollar research and development will launch us into the robotic age.

Google’s Boston Dynamics specializes in amazing animal-like robots. For instance, the Sand Flea is able to leap 30 feet in the air and land on a building rooftop. Then there’s Cheetah—able to run faster than 29 miles per hour. For more human-like robots, Atlas uses its legs to cover all sorts of terrain.

Already Boston Dynamics has built service robots to carry heavy equipment into the battlefield. Google is looking to work alongside our defense department to create an army of robots. Imagine this: Google’s Robot Army could go to war and the causalities would be technological, not human. Finally, war without irreplaceable loss. It's no longer science fiction.

Should we be concerned that one company is beginning to have so much information and access to everything we do?  Technology is something we’ve embraced, but are we sacrificing too much privacy?

We’re creating a system that will be easier to control. And who is in control? As for the advantages of robots, we should also remember that the robot would only be as good (or evil) as the one who programs it.

Maybe concern for Google and their robots is unnecessary, but will they always be on our side?

Image credits: Bing

Dr. Todd Coleman

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