• Google Glass

    Google has released a new video previewing Google Glass, the Internet is abuzz with excitement over its pending release.  While the concept seems interesting and futuristic for sure, I am not as excited about it.  Also, let me say that I am big fan of Google products, just not this.

    The main reason that I am not excited about Google Glass, is something we have all heard before, the lessening of real social interactions in our society.  But I believe the potential for this is especially true with Google Glass.  It already seems to be a problem with people who wear bluetooth headsets, and Google Glass could just make the problem more widespread because of its “coolness factor”.  

    While some of the features of the device seem very useful, a majority of them seem like they will distract you from the real world and have you talking to yourself instead of talking to others.  With what I saw from the video, people wearing Google Glass are kind of shutting themselves off to the outside world.  What I mean by this is the “bluetooth effect”. People in real life might be unsure if they are interacting with them or if that person is just giving commands to their Google Glasses.   

    I do see some uses for the Google Glass, just not everyday use.  I view it more as a novelty product though it will likely be a huge success.I hope that I don’t come off as a grumpy person who hates new technology, because I really don’t.  I will however leave you with a few questions:  With people continuously sharing videos and pictures of everything they see, will future generations even know how to describe events with just their words?  Will people know how to converse without carefully planning each word with the help of a device? And what are your thoughts on the potential social impact of Google Glass?

    Jake Szemanski is aBusiness Marketing and Management major from Penn State-Beaver Campus, which is located 40 minutes north of his hometown of Pittsburgh. He hopes to one day work in marketing or public relations for a major firm in the United States, preferably Lego.

  • Project Loon: Not so looney

    So last week I touched on Google’s plans to muscle in on the telecommunications industry by using other companies’ existing infrastructure. Well, Google is also trying to disrupt internet service providers by building infrastructure of their own. This is part of a project that is much farther along than their wireless carrier plans. Google Fiber, Google’s answer to your home internet needs, has already been introduced in a number of cities in the United States. Google has given AT&T and Comcast headaches by offering super fast internet speeds at affordable rates.

    This is all part of Google’s mission to get everyone on the internet in as many places as possible. Another interesting project that could potentially could add to their cellular wireless plan is Project Loon.

    What is Project Loon you ask?

    Project Loon is Google’s plan to provide internet to the masses by way of high-altitude balloons. These balloons would help fill 4G gaps in the United States and provide internet to those who don’t have it yet. These balloons would send and receive signals while floating near the edge of space. It would essentially do the same job as a satellite but at a much cheaper cost. This is a welcomed development for rural America Just ask anyone who lives outside of a metropolitan area, service isn’t always great. Some will tell you that they only get reception in a certain area of their house. I can’t even get reception on I-90 when I get into certain parts of eastern Indiana. Closing these service gaps would save rural America a lot of frustration.

    This is even bigger news for developing countries. Many don’t have internet yet because of the high cost of building the infrastructure. Eliminating that cost can help bring them into the 21st century and in turn help level the global playing field. Providing internet for cheap or for free would bring us to what the internet should be. A public service that gives the people the ability to share ideas and knowledge.