Monthly Archives: June 2014

Google Unveils Changes, Plans for Future at Google I/O

Web 2.0 practices infiltrated and influenced the development of the web around the same time that Google began its hypersonic growth. Since then the company has developed into one of the most important tech companies in the US, and possibly the world. Google played a role in helping the web become more social as well as bringing the web into our hands with its Android operating system for smart phones and tablets.

At the latest Google I/O, the company showed where it will continue to focus its energies for moving tech and the web forward. Google demonstrated a number of improvements and plans in its forays into television, automobiles, wearable computing (including fitness gear), and its Android operating system.

The changes and improvements are all about connecting numerous aspects of our life to the web. These changes have been a long time coming, but are finally becoming realities for people in their everyday lives. Social, personal and commercial data continues to grow in importance. Every year it seems we’re one step closer to interacting with technology and with other people in a revolutionary way.

Google isn’t only focusing on individual, social users of the web. They’re also looking at corporations and businesses in hopes of bringing greater connectedness for the private sector. They’re going after enterprise giant Microsoft with their Google Drive 2.0 and their latest updates to GoogleDrive. In the latest bits of info to flow from Google I/O it’s obvious that big data analytics and cloud services are where Google wants to focus to capture more of the market.

Expect to see a lot of experts and pundits commenting on the information and updates out from Google I/O this year. Google plays a huge role in shaping how the web develops, how individuals interact with the web (both personally and socially) and how the internet will permeate our lives by creating an “internet of things.” Whether the company stays true to the Web 2.0 principles they’ve explored to shape the web or moves in a new direction, Google will certainly be at the forefront.

Google Drops Half a Billion on Satellite Company

One of the most influential web 2.0 tech companies in the world has just made quite the purchase. News broke this week about Google’s purchase of a company called Skybox for $500 million dollars. This purchase comes on the heels of some other high-value purchases.

In this year alone, Google purchased a number of companies and startups for a variety of strategic reasons. Google bought home internet company Nest Labs, security company Impermium, AI company DeepMind Technologies, an aerospace company, and a number of other businesses. Skybox is the tech giant’s latest acquisition, and the purchase hints at the direction Google wants to go in with its services.

It certainly seems that Google is planning on using Skybox to improve its mapping services, thanks to the much cheaper satellite alternatives utilized by Skybox. However, some experts see the purchase as part of Google’s longer-term goal of gaining a foothold in space.

Google already runs Project Loon, which uses balloons to provide internet access to various hard-to-reach places around the globe. Their purchase of Titan Aerospace gave them a foothold in the rapidly evolving and fast-growing drone market. There’s no telling what Google could do with the incredibly detailed data gathering that they will have access to via Skybox.

Google has always been at the forefront of numerous technology developments and improvements on the web. With highly detailed and frequently captured images from space thanks to the satellites in Skybox’s arsenal, Google has the opportunity to eventually turn what’s happening around the globe into real-time (or close to real-time) data that consumers and businesses will be able to tap into.

As with many of its recent purchases, Google’s acquisition of Skybox will probably not show any tangible results very soon. However, expect to see the purchase of Skybox and other similar companies to be vital to Google’s strategy in the coming years.

Currency 2.0 on the Horizon?

Since 2000, the development of technology and the internet has increased by leaps and bounds. The vision of the Web 2.0 movement helped to drive the internet and social media, reshaping how humans around the world interact with technology. There’s no reason to believe this development will not continue to evolve into the future, but are there areas of commercial life that are lagging behind?

There’s so much the average person can do with a smart phone, tablet, or computer that he or she simply couldn’t do five or ten years ago. However, people still rely on traditional notions of currency, which have been around for decades. Money hasn’t really changed despite the vast developments apparent in much of social life and in technology.

Currency may be changing soon, though. You’ve probably heard of Bitcoin by now. The digital currency has become relatively newsworthy in the past year or two, even though the currency was created five years ago in 2009.

Slowly but surely, the concept of a digital currency is growing in the US. However, many of the big web 2.0 and retail commerce giants have kept their distance. But, this may no longer be the case thanks to a recent conversation with eBay CEO John Donahoe.

Rob Wile at SFGate reports that the “biggest ‘web 2.0’ guys” have avoided accepting Bitcoin. However, John Donahoe was quoted as stating that “there’s no doubt digital currency is going to play an important role going forward.” For an ecommerce company the size of eBay to acknowledge the concept of digital currency as an important issue is incredibly vital for the future use of the technology.

Could we be on the cusp of a new revolution in our perception of what money is and of how we interact with currency? This very well could be the beginnings of such a change. Keeping aware of Bitcoin and developments in digital currency will make for interesting reading!