More and more, computers will serve to “augment humanity” by filtering and directing relevant information to users, Google chief executive Eric Schmidt said Tuesday.
Schmidt said that search traffic tripled throughout the first half of 2010, and highlighted Google Goggles and Google Translate as two services that can use the smartphone as a sensor, passing information up to the service that’s stored in the cloud.
Google is “building social information into all of our products. So it won’t be a social network the way people think of Facebook, but rather social information about who your friends are, people you interact with and we have various ways we’ll be collecting that information.”
Schmidt did say that Google continues to work on an “infrastructure for health questions where you [users] give us health information,” which might have been a reference to the Google Health project that Google launched in 2008. Google receives between 3 to 5 percent of its queries on health-related questions, and Google brought in a team of doctors to prioritize its search responses. The need to integrate with XML-based legacy hospital IT systems is “just torturous,” Schmidt said.
As he did with Rose, Schmidt reiterated that Google can provide important context and recommendations, but only if customers sign in and agree to provide information. They can always opt out, he said. He also claimed that Google champions the “openness of the Web,” while Apple promotes “closedness,” he said.
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