Smart refrigerators and space elevators
How would you like to own a refrigerator that would automatically order groceries for you at your local Safeway or Trader Joe’s in San Francisco when it sensed you were running low on milk, eggs or other food staples? Or perhaps you’d like to go into outer space by taking an elevator?
These product concepts are but a few from Google’s version of Area 51: Google X.
Unnoticed and clandestine
The Google X development lab for special product projects is so secretive (at least until now) that most Google employees never heard of the super-secret division of the world’s largest search engine company.
Not only is the Google X division under the radar amongst the general population at Google at its Mountain View, CA headquarters, it really is undetectable—the location of the physical lab is unknown to only to those who work there and to Google co-founders Larry Page Sergey Brin.
What’s it for?
According to those who broke the ice about Google X and wanted to remain anonymous for obvious reasons, the purpose of the secret projects division was to develop and brainstorm on ideas from a top 100 list of futuristic products—whether they were practical or not.
Although a good deal of the ideas will never see the light of day as far as being actually produced, several insiders at Google X said that one of the items developed from there would be ready for release to the general public soon.
What is it? The sources wouldn’t say. Darn.
Our guess for future products from Google? Smartphones, laptops, and MP3 players.
Far out products
Some other examples of Google X concept products the lab is brainstorming on are dinner plates that could post the contents of your dinner to an online social network site for your friends to see; a robot that could take your place at work while you stayed home (we like this one a lot), and driverless cars, which actually went on test runs on California roads earlier this year.
What Google says
As with many secretive organizations the specific information about Google X is scarce. Jill Hazelbaker, a spokesperson for Google, didn’t comment on the secret innovation laboratory, she did say:
“While the possibilities are incredibly exciting, please do keep in mind that the sums involved are very small by comparison to the investments we make in our core businesses.”
Now, if only the Google X team could invent something that could increase gas mileage on our cars to around 100 MPG that would really make us happy.
Via New York Times
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Written by: Frank Ling on Monday, November 14, 2011 – 10:14 AM