Why Google will never post profits like Apple just did

The Imitation Game was not as good a film as it was made out to be.  Maybe if you know nothing about Turing or the history around it all, or if you enjoy watching whodunnit TV shows.  Some people summarized it as “the story of how a closet gay shortened the war by two years”.  Well that is a terrible summary.  Probably because the film isn’t sure where to focus.  What is much more interesting is that thanks to his invention, the computer, we can quite accurately guess how many gay men in the U.S. are in the closet looking at Google searches.

In the film, the only part I found interesting (but the film just glossed over in a video clip like quick series of shots with music) was after they broke the Enigma code.  They had to use some of the intelligence, but not so much that the Nazis figured out they were eavesdropping.  If they saved every ship from Uboat attacks, the Germans would know they knew how Enigma worked and change the whole coding system thus rendering it uncrackable again.    They had to calculate the impact of every Nazi move on the war effort and decide where they could pass on vital information to the Allies to make a difference.  Only just enough of a difference though…

In that sense, Google is much much worse than Hitler and the entire Nazi empire.  They own the global search market.  They know what we want better than us because not only do they have our individual searches, but the technology to evaluate it too.   And how much do they tell us?  They statistically jiggle, hide, mix up, muddle and do everything they can so we can’t reverse engineer what they know.  Which is a lot.   Google knows what we are looking for.  Google knows what we are thinking.  It is the closest to an omniscient being we have ever had.  Even without their impressive number crunching technology, just looking at the raw data of searches in a country or particular region would spark a million new business ideas in the head of even the most ignorant person.

I am pretty serious when I say that I would willingly cut off a finger in exchange for access to Google big data.  It really would be the closest to playing God I can imagine.  Surely way beyond any previous homo sapiens could even imagine.

So when Apple posts “record profits” I just smile.    Google could easily make ten times as much.  But then everyone would start asking questions.  When Google chooses certain cities for ultra fast access, how are they choosing?  Should we all be focusing on those cities?  When Google buys a company, what do they know that we don’t?  Exactly like Turing’s team in World War II, Google is carefully giving away only just so much so we can’t reverse engineer what they are up to.

Unfortunately my finger is still on my hand and I am none the wiser though…

Leave a Comment