Tag Archives | Google

Google Nanotech Pill Will Search Your Body For Disease Detection

There’s an emerging theme in contemporary science fiction of medical nanotechnology running amok with disastrous consequences for humanity. The inevitable science fact is catching up fast with fiction and no surprise, Google is among the first mega-corporations working on a nanotech pill that will run around the human body detecting problems (and no doubt eventually “fixing” them). From PC Mag:

Google X is working on another moonshot: a nanoparticle-filled pill intended to help doctors identify and prevent fatal diseases.

Andrew Conrad, head of the Life Sciences team at the Google X research lab, told attendees at the The Wall Street Journal’s WSJD Live conference (video below) that he wants to “functionalize” nanoparticles and “make them do what we want.”

These particles are less than one-thousandth the size of a red blood cell, and small enough that millions can fit within a grain of sand – or the human body. But don’t expect to start swallowing nanoparticle-infused pills during your next visit to the doctor.

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Google Is Not What It Seems

OR Book Going RougeWikiLeaks has a lengthy excerpt from the new book by Julian Assange, When Google Met WikiLeaks (OR Books), in which he describes the special relationship between Google, Hillary Clinton and the State Department:

Eric Schmidt is an influential figure, even among the parade of powerful characters with whom I have had to cross paths since I founded WikiLeaks. In mid-May 2011 I was under house arrest in rural Norfolk, about three hours’ drive northeast of London. The crackdown against our work was in full swing and every wasted moment seemed like an eternity. It was hard to get my attention. But when my colleague Joseph Farrell told me the executive chairman of Google wanted to make an appointment with me, I was listening.

In some ways the higher echelons of Google seemed more distant and obscure to me than the halls of Washington. We had been locking horns with senior US officials for years by that point.

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Ireland to close corporate tax loophole used by Google and others

Google_logo

Well now isn’t that special.

Via the LA Times:

Bowing to pressure from U.S. and European officials, Ireland will phase out a notorious loophole that helps multinational corporations legally dodge billions of dollars in taxes in their homelands.

A tax maneuver known as the Double Irish has allowed major U.S. technology companies such as Google Inc. to funnel income through subsidiaries in Ireland to slash their tax bills at home.

The decision to close that loophole won’t affect Ireland’s low corporate tax rate or other special tax breaks that have lured the likes of tech giants Apple, Facebook, Microsoft and Oracle, all of which have set up Irish subsidiaries to help them shelter foreign profits from U.S. taxes.

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This should be interesting…

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Google Ditches ALEC

If you haven’t heard of the American Legislative Exchange Council, generally referred to as ALEC, it’s a conservative group of American lawmakers who are trying to institute extreme right wing legislation throughout the states.

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They’ve been remarkably successful in persuading large corporations to back them, but first Micrsoft and now Google are distancing themselves, reports the Chicago Tribune:

Google is breaking ties with the American Legislative Exchange Council, a prominent network of conservative state legislators that, among other projects, works to roll back laws that promote solar and wind power, the company’s chairman said Monday.

The decision marks a major victory for a campaign by environmentalists, union activists and other liberal groups that have pushed companies to drop support for ALEC. Microsoft ended its ties to the group a few weeks ago.

“The consensus within the company was that that was some sort of mistake,” Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt said, referring to the initial decision to support ALEC.

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Google wraps underwater wires in “armor” to protect against sharks

Tasty!

via Slate:

The Internet is a series of tubes … that are sometimes attacked by sharks.

Reports of sharks biting the undersea cables that zip our data around the world date to at least 1987. That’s when the New York Times reported that “sharks have shown an inexplicable taste for the new fiber-optic cables that are being strung along the ocean floor linking the United States, Europe, and Japan.”

Now it seems Google is biting back. According to Network World’s Brandon Butler, a Google product manager explained at a recent event that the company has taken to wrapping its trans-Pacific underwater cables in Kevlar to guard against shark bites.

Google confirmed to me that its newest generation of undersea cables comes wrapped in special protective yarn and steel wire armor—and that the goal is to protect against cable cuts, including possible shark attacks. Here’s an old video of what that looks like, in case you were wondering:

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Google’s Frankenbuger

Burgers (4627873264)“Frankenburger” taste pioneer Josh Schonwald thinks that the $300,000 not-so-great lab grown meat-burger may soon become commercially viable and, perhaps, quite tasty, thanks to funding from Google’s Sergey Brin. He writes at TIME:

They may not taste great yet, but scientists, with the help of Sergey Brin, are ready to change that.

It has been one year since I took part in one of the most surreal and expensive taste tests in human history. No, I didn’t eat a black Périgord truffle seasoned with gold or a bowl of beluga caviar. Last August in London, with 200 journalists and several hulking cameras staring at me, I was one of the two people to taste the so-called Frankenburger: the world’s first lab-grown beef burger, a five-ounce patty grown from cow stem cells that took a Dutch scientist four years of research and $332,000 to create…

The most exciting news I heard last summer was not that a cultured beef burger was actually, finally, being made—nor that I would be the guinea pig flown to London to try it.

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Google’s New Moonshot Project: the Human Body

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A brave new world beckons as Google boldly goes towards a new frontier… From the Wall Street Journal:

Google Inc. has embarked on what may be its most ambitious and difficult science project ever: a quest inside the human body.

Called Baseline Study, the project will collect anonymous genetic and molecular information from 175 people—and later thousands more—to create what the company hopes will be the fullest picture of what a healthy human being should be.

The early-stage project is run by Andrew Conrad, a 50-year-old molecular biologist who pioneered cheap, high-volume tests for HIV in blood-plasma donations.

Dr. Conrad joined Google X—the company’s research arm—in March 2013, and he has built a team of about 70-to-100 experts from fields including physiology, biochemistry, optics, imaging and molecular biology.

Other mass medical and genomics studies exist. But Baseline will amass a much larger and broader set of new data. The hope is that this will help researchers detect killers such as heart disease and cancer far earlier, pushing medicine more toward prevention rather than the treatment of illness.

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Media Roots Radio – Occupy Silicon Valley

Abby and Robbie Martin discuss the potentiality of an ‘Occupy Silicon Valley’ protest movement in a similar mold to ‘Occupy Oakland’ taking place in California’s San Francisco Bay Area. They address the ethical issues revolving around tech-companies like Facebook, Google, Apple, Microsoft, Soundcloud and debunk the notion that private corporations will install privacy safeguards on their own without the pressure of public consumer outrage. Robbie goes into the history of Silicon Valley’s roots, which tie directly to the Pentagon’s post-WWII defense industry private sector push.
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Yes, Google works with “former military operations people.” But they won’t tell us who, or from where

alg_google-flamesDo you trust Google? Consider this from PandoDaily:

Last week, I wrote about how Google’s working with a mysterious set of “former military operations people” on Project Loon  — the company’s zany and rather frightening attempt to have an army of WiFi/surveillance balloons that are constantly circling the globe way up in the atmosphere.

The information came via a report by Wired’s Steven Levy. Given Google’s history of close collaboration with the military-industrial complex, it wasn’t terribly surprising. Hell, Google’s DC office is crammed to the brim with former spooks, intelligence officials and revolving door military contractors.

But I was still curious: What kind of “former military operations people” are we talking about here? Are they on loan from a government agency? Are they private military contractors? Independent agents? And what country’s military did they come from?

So I put the question to Google’s PR department.

Google refused to confirm or deny the information, replying that “we don’t comment on specific personnel issues” and “sorry, but we don’t have any additional details to share.”

In other words: Yes, Google does work with “former military operations.” But as to who they are?

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The Right to be Forgotten

Body painting - Search boxMuch has been written this week about the so-called “Right to be Forgotten” in the wake of the Court of Justice of the European Union decision requiring Google to “listen and sometimes comply when individuals request the removal of links to newspaper articles or websites containing their personal information.

But what exactly is this “right”? Jeffrey Rosen, Professor of Law, The George Washington University and Legal Affairs Editor, The New Republic, wrote an article addressing exactly that question in the Stanford Law Review in 2012 (remember to think about who the author and publisher are!):

At the end of January, the European Commissioner for Justice, Fundamental Rights, and Citizenship, Viviane Reding, announced the European Commission’s proposal to create a sweeping new privacy right—the “right to be forgotten.” The right, which has been hotly debated in Europe for the past few years, has finally been codified as part of a broad new proposed data protection regulation.

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