Google has developed self-driving cars. Although the cars are not yet fully developed, they have been tested on the roads. The cars are manned by operators who understand how the technology works. The cars have been developed to make use of cameras, sensors that use sensor technology and laser range finders so that they are able to navigate the traffic. They have also been developed to make use of maps which are detailed. This way, they are able to know the traffic and the road that has been set ahead. This is enhanced and made possible with the well-developed Google data centers. These Google data centers are able to process enormous information that the driverless cars gather from the terrains (Markoff, 2010).
The main controller and enabler of the driverless car is a Velodyne 64-beam laser which is used to generate a 3D map of the environment with which the car is operating from. The car will integrate and combine the laser beams from the device with the world maps which will result in different data models which enables it to drive itself. This also enables it to avoid obstacles and respect the traffic rules that have been set. There are also other sensors that have been set on the vehicle. There are four radars which have been mounted on the front and rear bumpers. These enable the car to be able to see far enough and deal with the traffic in these locations. There is a camera which has been positioned in the rear view mirror that will enable it to detect the traffic lights. There is also a GPS inertial measurement unit that has been integrated to the car, together with a wheel encoder that will enable the car to determine the location it is positioned and keep track of the movements. The cars are manned by a trained driver who is behind the wheel. This driver will take over if there is some technical problem that comes up. In the passenger seat is a software operator who has been trained to monitor the software (Markoff, 2010).
There are advantages that come with this technology. One of the advantaged is that safety on the roads will be achieved. The cars have been designed to obey the traffic rules on the road. This has been an issue with drivers on the road. Another advantage of the car is that it makes use of the traffic maximally. This is because of the fact driverless cars are able to drive close to one another and thus will be able to make use of the 80-90% road usage of cars.
One disadvantage of this technology is that the reliability is still an issue. This is because software can fail. This will make the technology fail and can cause accidents on the roads. Reliability is an issue with this car because of the fact that the car will not be driven in newer locations. The car will not be familiar with the new roads in these locations.
One ethical concern that this technology will bring is that people who are employed as drivers will lack employment. The technology will make many people go without employment.
Google’s renewable energy team
Google is striving to alternative sources of energy. The company has formed a three-team who will manage the development of this investment. The company strives to develop electricity from alternative sources of energy apart from coal. The initiative has been called RE<C which means renewable energy should be cheaper than coal. The initiative has been designed to focus on solar thermal power technologies which have been enhanced, technologies from the wind, geothermal systems technologies, and other technologies which are considered to bring major breakthroughs. The RE<C is getting engineers who will be tasked with ensuring that this project is successful. The team will undertake extensive research and will start working on solar thermal energy. The team will also be tasked with investigating the possibilities on working with geothermal energy sources. Google expects to spend tens of millions of dollars in this venture. Google believes that solar geothermal source of energy will provide cheaper sources of energy when compared to coal (Pimentel et al., 2002).
There will be strategic partnerships that Google will strive to have so that these investments will be realized soon. The partners that the company strives to work together include research and development organizations, universities, and companies.
Google has put on place strategies to have a hiring of five people who will be tasked with undertaking these researches in the company. There are indications that the people who will be hired by the company will be five. This is because the company has advertised five positions that will be based in Mountain View. One of the members will be tasked with managing the energy consumption of Google so that it is in tandem with its objective of being energy –efficient company with carbon neutral goal. The other four people who will be hired will handle more of mechanical engineering tasks than the typical hires of Google Company. There will also be three hires done by Google who will be tasked with assessing and recommending the investments and in developing new technologies done by the company. The three will include a head of renewable energy that will be the head of the team, an engineer who will be tasked with early-stage energy and development of prototyping, and a mechanical engineer who will be tasked with the design process. In the hiring process, the main phrase that will be used is utility scale.
The positive impact with the development of this technology is that it will help solve global warming aspect. The energy use that is seen in the world today is seen to be the main contributing issue to the extent that global warming has gone. This should be corrected with alternative energy sources. Another advantage is that the companies who do not have the resources to participate in the development of alternative sources of energy will be able to participate. It will also allow companies to buy alternative energies on a large scale because of the strength that comes from utilities.
One disadvantage with this is that the state utilities will need approval from the government. It is also hard to find projects which are cost-efficient.
Google developer code
This is a technology that has been developed by Google to help developers have tools, resources, and APIs. Google has developed a site that is being used to have resources that are used by the developers of Google products. Google has also developed APIs for most of its products. The common products which have APIs include YouTube, Google Maps, Mobile Apps of Google, and other popular products from Google.
Google have developed a Google App Engine which is used to host services that are used for web apps. The hosting of the project enables developers to have users version control of the open source code. This enables the developers to understand how the app runs in a user’s environment.
The developer codes are meant to enhance their program, development experience. There are common codes that are developed for things like classes and methods (functions). With Google developer’s tools, these have been developed so that developers will not have to rewrite the code for these applications again. The developers will concentrate on the functionality of the main program. This will mean that Google developers will integrate the main program with the Google developer’s code. This has made the developer’s experience and work simpler. They now have the time and experience to work on the main program. The developer’s process will also be standardized.
The developer tools and open source projects include App Engine which allows the programmer to run web applications on top of Google’s infrastructure. Google App engine enables apps which are written in different programming languages to run. There is also project hosting which enables programmers have revision control of the projects that are done in collaboration.
One advantage of this technology is that it enables programmers have a standardized process of developing common tools like Google maps and Google APIs. It also enables programmers to concentrate on the major application.
One disadvantage with this is that the tools and code developed by Google will become a standard for most programmers. It will not allow programmers come up with other versions of the program code from Google.
Information Systems and World Wide Web Security
One of the projects that Google is undertaking concerning World Wide Web security is that of DoS attacks. Google is developing Digital Attacker Map. Google is striving to build data visualization in order to be able to map global DDoS attacks on a daily basis. This is in the backdrop of the fact that websites are vulnerable to digital attacks that will make people not be able to access the websites they are interested in. one way that this has been achieved by attackers is to load websites with content that is not of use and value to the users. When the attacker uses many computers to achieve this, it is referred to as Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS). DDoS are increasingly being used by attackers and is becoming increasingly complex each year.
Google have collaborated with Arbor Networks to come up with data visualization for mapping DDoS attacks daily. This tool brings into fore anonymous data that will enable users to link the attacks to historical events. This will enable them make related connections to the historical events and be able to relate these two events. There data are updated on a daily basis and historical data can be viewed from any country at any time. With this surfacing of this important data, people will be able to make informed decisions about the digital attacks. They will be prepared to respond to these attacks in appropriate manner. The digital attacker map has started reporting on the digital attacks that have been unreported in the past. This is helping attackers get access and insights into attacks that had been directed at them but were not able to report.
Another project for security of World Wide Web that is enhanced by Google is uProxy. This is a project that helps users to share secure paths to the internet. With this project and tool, users will be able to guide one another with the path that is secure to get to the internet. This is a private VPN that allows users to set their preferences and those of their friends. This service will enable users to get protected from third parties who may want to block or restrict users from some specific websites. With this project, users will be able to provide each other with connections which are more secure and private connections to the internet. This project is currently under development and there are a few testers who are allowed to make use.
One advantage of the data visualization is that users will be able to get information about the historical attacks. This will bring clearly the actions that users will have to do in order to prevent the attacks. It will also enable better diagnosis process for the security engineers.
One disadvantage of these security projects is that privacy is not catered for. In the case of uProxy, the users’ privacy is violated. This is because the path that the users have used in the connections to the internet is known by other people. This contravenes privacy.
Cryptography and privacy settings and it’s relation to distributed system and parallel computing
One of the developments that is designed and enhanced by Google in terms of cryptography is that of developing fast elliptic curve in OpenSSL. The research concerns the optimization of NIST and SECG-standardized elliptic curve P-224. This development is designed to integrate to the OpenSSL 1.0.1. This has been enabled with the use of TSL handshake with the use of 1024-bit RSA certificate (Cafarella et al., 2008).
The concept of the use of this technology is the use of forward secrecy. With this technology, each letter that is being exchanged is given their own dedicated ring. This means that if an attacker copies a ring, they will only be able to decode one letter. This technology introduces a lot of overhead to the server. This means that if the NSA were to get one of the decryption keys for Google, they would only be able to work on a single session of a single user. With this technology, everyone will log in with different data and different keys. The keys change every login session. The common cryptographic methods that have relied on master key held on the organization’s servers. This key would allow the secure communications between the users in the company. This had a limitation in that if the attacker would get hold of the information, they would get data that is used by many users because they use the same key. The principle of forward secrecy is to ensure that no long-term key can affect the security of the past sessions. This is achieved by use of authenticated Diffie-Hellman (DH) handshakes. The purpose of RSA is now dedicated to DH value signing. Together with this technology, Google has fully implemented the secure HTTPS protocol.
This technology is related to distributed system and parallel computing. This is another aspect of research that Google is striving to develop successfully. This will be achieved by making use of a distributed F1 database that has been built by Google to support the business of AdSense. This is made to support the availability and scalability of NoSQL databases and the consistency of traditional SQL databases. The development of F1 has been undertaken on Spanner which is used to provide synchronous cross-datacenter replication and also the replication of services. One advantage of these developments is that the security of data will be enhanced. The keys that are used for securing data and information will be secured. This will enable security of communication sessions in the network. Forward secrecy is a technology that enables companies to secure the sessions that are initiated by their users. There is scalability, usability, and availability, in the quest to achieve optimal performance of the data retrieval and the communication process. This is one of the developments that are promoted by Google.
One disadvantage, though, is that the servers of the companies will be loaded with a lot of data. This will reduce the performance of the servers. The security tradeoff has been made between the server performance of the server and the security of the users.
Cafarella, M., Chang, E., Fikes, A., Halevy, A., Hsieh, W., Lerner, A., & Muthukrishnan, S. (2008). Data management projects at Google. ACM SIGMOD Record, 37(1), 34-38.
Markoff, J. (2010). Google cars drive themselves, in traffic. The New York Times, 10, A1.
Pimentel, D., Herz, M., Glickstein, M., Zimmerman, M., Allen, R., Becker, K., & Seidel, T. (2002). Renewable energy: current and potential issues.Bioscience, 52(12), 1111-1120.