Google Loon Project
Google’s “Project Loon” is definitely something a little out of the ordinary. It’s a plan they’ve had for a while that has finally come out to the public. Whether you think it’s cool, loony or just outright stupid, you can’t deny that it’s awesome. Google is launching huge (15m/50ft in diameter!), super-pressure balloons into the edge of our atmosphere to provide internet down below. The majority of the world right now is without internet; this will help with communication, especially in times of natural disaster and will definitely help the world be more connected.
Each balloon will last around 100 days and “orbit” the Earth in an easterly direction. Each balloon with internet connectivity to an area of 40km below. Google says speeds will be around the same as 3G, if not faster.
“The idea behind Loon was that it might be easier to tie the world together by using what it has in common – the skies – than the process of laying fibre and trying to put up cellphone infrastructure” said Richard DeVaul, Google chief technical architect.
You can read more about this awesome project and track its progress here. What do you guys think of this project? A bit too “out there”? Or totally innovative? I, personally, think it’s great seeing such a big company doing something not to maximise profits, but to actually bring the human race closer together and provide a huge aid when communication is critical.
Read More about Google’s Loon Project.
Facebook And Twitter
Hashtags have been around for quite a while. Since the birth of Twitter, people have been hashtagging their lives; ironically or not. Facebook has now finally added support for them! They have said it will offer a “larger view of what’s happening” – this would definitely help with ad sales, providing a sort of platform for “real time marketing”. A missing feature finally added or just another way to boost revenue: what do you think?
Twitter has boasted about keeping its users’ information private with all of this NSA/PRISMA stuff that’s been happening, but they will now have to reveal the names of users posting racist tweets after after a court case dating back to October 2012. Anti-semitic comments were made and a French judge ruled that Twitter must hand over the requested data. “Twitter has not made any progress in regards to respecting our country’s laws” said John Hayoun, president of UEJF (Union des étudiants juifs de France [Union of French Jewish students]).
Read More about Facebook Hashtags.
Microsoft Caves In – Good News For Gamers
After all the Gamers complaining about the 24 hour online and the game share rule in Xbox One. Microsoft now caves in and announced that the console will not have to connect to the internet and the games can be shared just by trading the disks with your friends.
Read More about what changes were implemented .
Facebook Reveals Information on NSA Data Requests
Facebook has announced that they had received between 9000 to 10000 requests for user data from the NSA in the second half of 2012 alone. Multiple huge companies such as Google and Microsoft have allowed the US government direct access to sensitive user information under a data collection programme we’ve all heard of by now. PRISM. Is this an invasion of privacy? Maybe, but there are so many different arguments for and against it. Facebook said in a recent blog post, reassuring its users, that this is a tiny fraction of the company’s huge userbase; under 1% of their 1.1 billion active users.