Thursday, February 11, 2010

I just got buzzed or, Help! I am being followed!

If Google went down tomorrow, I'd pretty much have to kill myself. I use Gmail for my business because it available to me anywhere, and my ability to organize and integrate it with my other data and apps is stunningly useful. And no spam.

I use Google Street View to check out businesses that might have a use for my rear projection digital signage business line, which is designed to be displayed in windows. I "go" down the street looking for businesses that have a suitable window and then I contact them. Saves hours of riding around, and it's free.

I have a lot of my business information and important documents stored on Google docs, which I also use to collaborate on projects. This blog is on Google. I use their calendar, their "to do" list. It just goes on and on.

Today I hooked up Google Buzz, it was easy, too easy, just like the rest of the Google happy dust. To my surprise (shock?) I am being "followed" by someone I don't know - but who once posted on this blog. And with several hundred other "contacts" I am sure that this is just the beginning.

What can he see? According to Google:

"Your Google Reader shared items, Picasa Web public albums, and Google Chat status messages will automatically appear as posts in Buzz. To edit your connected sites or change privacy settings, view connected sites."

Is even this too much? Sure I have public Picasa albums, I use Google reader (Feedly actually, but they are integrated into the matrix, sorry Google), but I don't know... this just feels invasive.

What really bothers me though, is that unlike our other shadowy masters, Steve and Bill, I know almost nothing about about Sergei and Larry, other than they are very smart and very very rich. Jesus, they might even be Republicans! Are you scared yet?

"Don't be evil", Google motto.

Larry and Sergei have information, lots of it. Absolute power and all that.

Google indexes every word on every web page in the world.

Google, or "The Google" as I like to call them - is a problem.

Every email I send, they store. Every email I get, they store. Their robots read my mail to serve me ads. You too. Is that all they do? Who knows? Google does!

Has Barack Obama ever visited, or made some intemperate remarks about white people in his emails? I have no idea, but Sergei and Larry do, and if he did, they could, if they so chose, blackmail him, with that one little data point, they would, in effect, own the President. You too of course, same for all the senators and members of the congress, one false step on line and the Google has got your number.

They have all the passwords. They know where you went and what you searched for. And it's not going away. Can Larry and Sergei resist using the 'ring of power' , the largest database of personal information ever assembled? Are they as good and Bilbo and Frodo?

If you don't believe me, just Google it.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Gil Scott Heron, extraordinary new recording

I don't work for the record companies, so it's just from me when I say that this new album by Gil Scott Heron is something very special. Have a listen. Then have a Listen.