The Living Is Easy

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Archive for Technology

Am I Afraid of Google?


I think that Google is a great company that is leading the way in modern day technology.  But I have to question the amount of information that is easily provided online by Google.  I recently downloaded Google Earth to my computer.  The technology and accuracy are amazing.   I was very impressed with the graphics and the ease of use.


I searched for my house, my parent’s house, and my sister’s house.  You could literally see everything in the yard.   I began to think about what someone could do with all of this information.  It was kind of scary to think that a terrorist could easily use this information to plan a massive attack against everyday citizens. So to answer the question yes, I am slightly afraid of Google.


I also checked out Google Health.  What a great idea.  Or is it?  I am not sure if I want my health records online.  While I do not have any major health issues, I do not want that information out there on the Web.  I am sure that Google has gone through great lengths to make sure the site is secure but there is still a chance that someone could break into the site.   People are already discriminated against enough in this country.  Imagine what would happen if someone figured out a way to get into these medical records.  They could easily use this information to deny someone a job or even to deny the right to rent a property. 


About six months ago I signed up for a free copy of my credit report through one of the major credit reporting companies.  I received an email from the company reminding me about my online account with them.  I decided to log on to see if there were any recent updates on my account.  As soon as I logged in my social security number and my name were both on the screen.  I was very surprised that my entire social security number was on the screen.  I immediately logged out of the site.  But imagine if a hacker was watching my internet activity.  Can anyone say IDENTITY THEFT? 


I added the video above entitled “Google Maps: Part I of The Googling” from YouTube since we discussed Google Maps in class.  I thought it was pretty funny.  I hope you enjoy!


Thoughts on We The Media

The main point of the book We the Media is to describe how the ways we receive information has changed and will constantly evolve because of the Internet.  According to Dan Gillmor, the author, the purpose of writing We The Media was to “persuade readers that the collision of journalism and technology is having major consequences for three constituencies: journalists, newsmakers, and the audience.”


As I read this book I could not help but think about how a few years ago my mother discovered how easy and convenient it was to pay a few household bills online.  She was so excited about her new find that she immediately told my father.  To her surprise my father became irate with her.  He could not believe that she posted their credit card online to pay a bill.   Today, the man that could not believe his wife would bypass writing out a check and licking a stamp to pay a bill now has an email address and frequently makes financial transactions online several times a week. He finally got it.


The Internet has forever changed how we handle our personal business as well as traditional business models for large and small corporations alike.  In order to stay relevant in today’s society these changes must be embraced and incorporated into our everyday lives.  The Internet has changed many of our assumptions about media.  It not only allows people to pay bills and send emails, it allows for anyone to voice their opinions about whatever they want.  This includes positive or negative reviews of products and companies, and ordinary people can now become journalists and writers with authority.   CEOs, journalists, politicians, among others have to look ahead and rethink their business models to fit into this new form of media.  The Internet has taken over our lives it is one of the most important inventions of our time.  However, it is also rapidly changing and you have to either keep up or move to the side. 


Please keep up.