Google outspooks the spooks with Total Information Awareness plan
Lend us your drives
By Andrew Orlowski • In Media • At 02:14 GMT 8th March 2006
Google wants to mirror and index every byte of your hard drive, relegating your PC to a "cache", notes on a company PowerPoint presentation reveal.
The file accompanied part of Google's analyst day last week. Google has since withdrawn the file, telling the BBC that the information was not intended for publication.
The justification for this enormous data grab is that Google would be able to restore your data after a catastrophic system failure.
The notes reveal a plan to -
Store 100% of User Data
... With infinite storage, we can house all user files, including: emails, web history, pictures, bookmarks, etc and make it accessible from anywhere (any device, any platform, etc).
We already have efforts in this direction in terms of GDrive, GDS, Lighthouse, but all of them face bandwidth and storage constraints today. (...) This theme will help us make the client less important (thin client, thick server model) which suits our strength vis-a-vis Microsoft and is also of great value to the user.
As we move toward the 'Store 100%' reality, the online copy of your data will become your Golden Copy and your local-machine copy serves more like a cache."
Perhaps it's Google's gift to the US government. In August 2003, Admiral John M Poindexter was forced to resign after his 'Total Information Awareness' data mining program was revealed to be indexing "everyday transactions as credit card purchases, travel reservations and e-mail."
Exactly what Google will have if its 'GDrive' ever materializes.
And here's a coincidence.
What tipped Poindexter's resignation was his specific plan to operate "terror casino". The scheme porported to tap "collective wisdom" of the public in predicting world events such as assassinations.
This hokum New Age idea, beloved by autistic technophiliacs, was rapidly shot down. But it has its fans in Silicon Valley, as this slide from Google's analyst presentation shows.
Google has outspooked the spooks. ®