The CEO of Google says that people are looking to Google to tell them what to do. Although people may or may not consciously want Google to tell them what to do, they know the Google has the ability to tell them what to do. In fact Google has enough information in its possession to accurately predict what people will do.
Google is becoming god-like
Google is out of control and everyone knows it. Google knows who people are. It knows what people want. It has pictures of where millions of people live and work. It has in its possession billions of emails that reveal relationships, business plans, problems, political campaigns, crimes, and more. It has videos of millions of people. It stores billions of photographs that may or may not be shared. Hundreds of thousands of books and technical papers are stored on Google. Corporations large and small store accounting, inventory, and other business data on Google and pay them for that privilege. Blogs, social networking, and other information sources are all owned by Google. Couple that with data from the millions of smart phones out there powered by its Android operating system and the entire Web browsing history it harvests from its Chrome Web browser. Google knows what you are buying and it knows what you are selling. Google even knows where you are right now.
Chances are that Google knows you. It knows the behavior of people like you and it probably can tell you what you should do. Ask it what clothes you should wear. Get Google to tell you if you should take that job. Google can tell you which car to buy, which person to marry, and where you should get buried.
The future of Google
Talking to The Wall Street Journal, Schmidt let the world know that search is on the way out: A new world order, Google style, will soon take its place. Google will know that you are out of milk and proactively tell you to stop at the store to buy some. Oh, that is if you have the money. If Google knows that you do not have money for milk, it may direct you to the nearest social services office or food bank.
Artificial intelligence is the name of the game. Rather than answering your search question, Google will determine what you meant and serve up customized information that you wanted to know, only weren’t smart enough to know that you wanted to know it.
The fight for privacy is a losing battle. Sure, some European communities have taken Google to task over its Street View project, but those are only small defeats for the behemoth that knows more about the politicians trying to regulate it than they know about themselves. Google has survived privacy concerns over Gmail, Buzz, and other aspects of its business, so it knows that privacy advocates will not stop it.
As Google evolves, get ready for unprecedented meddling in your life. You can now find out all that you need to know from Google: soon you will find out from it what you need to think and do.
Jenkins, Holman W. “Google and the Search for the Future .” Wall Street Journal. August 14, 2010. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704901104575423294099527212.html (accessed August 22, 2010).