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Google Getting More Friendly with the Government?

And Vice Versa?

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Google has an office in Washington D.C., and now it is opening another one just a stone’s throw away in Reston, Virginia. Why? So the company can try to sell "cloud computing" to government agencies, according to the Washington Post.

Google moved into its Reston office last month, and is still getting settled apparently. The office (photos of which can bee seen at Michael’s Blog) is a bit unconventional for Reston, but absolutely conventional for Google. The Post writes:

Take its new space, a departure from the typical cubicle-filled offices of Northern Virginia. The conference rooms are named after famous Virginia natives, such as Patsy Cline and Lewis and Clark. The room named after Ella Fitzgerald contains a floor-to-ceiling photo of the singer. Nearby are big-screen TVs, supposedly reserved for videoconferencing. Meals are catered daily in the cafeteria. Vint Cerf, referred to as the "Father of the Internet" for his role in developing the network, has an office next to a cluster of Adirondack lawn chairs intended to promote discussion among employees.

This sounds like as good an environment as any to create the laundry soap-providing web services, that Cerf talked about in his prophecy for the Internet’s future. But this would only be part of the cloud computing concept that Google’s trying to impose on the government. What they would really like is for the government agencies to use Google Search for internal searches, Google Docs for internal documents, and Google Maps/Google Earth for God-knows-what.

Using Google for everything may be good for me or you, or even for a Fortune 500 company, but do we really want Google to control the government’s data (especially with Google and privacy issues being so fond of one another)? It’s already begun anyway. Kim Hart with the Post says that 38,000 District government employees are using Google for email, watching training videos on YouTube, etc. The government is also plotting projects on Google Maps.

It will certainly be interesting to see how Google products further integrate within our government’s systems, and all actions will surely be closely scrutinized. At least the ones that appear on the radar.

Google Getting More Friendly with the Government?
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  • Guest

    Google no doubt has an index of ALL informational content on the i’net within cloud.

    I anticipate the Government would have access to this ‘full’ index + the information they already control potentially creating, if indexed properly, a full-spec, world class information system.
    Also a very large pay cheque for Google.

    nice :)

  • http://www.portalmaonaroda.com.br equipamentos industriais

    Google has so many information about anything in the web… I can imagine how much Google can help Government. I dare to say that sometimes Google knows more than Government.