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The Google Navy 259

Posted by timothy
from the but-it's-on-the-internet dept.
theodp writes "Is Google preparing to launch its own Navy? In its just-published application for a patent on the Water-Based Data Center, Google envisions a world where 'computing centers are located on a ship or ships, which are then anchored in a water body from which energy from natural motion of the water may be captured, and turned into electricity and/or pumping power for cooling pumps to carry heat away from computers in the data center.' And you thought The Onion was joking when it reported on Google's Fleet of Naval Warships!"
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The Google Navy

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  • Cooling (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Uglypug (1309973) on Saturday September 06, 2008 @02:18PM (#24902363)
    Very good idea from a cooling point of view I suppose, the a/c bills for a big datacenter can be huge. But enough to offset the cost of operating an entire ship..?
  • by Adambomb (118938) on Saturday September 06, 2008 @02:19PM (#24902377) Journal

    Now focus on that apart from the fact that it would also allow them to shift the jurisdiction of their operations when laws change in specific regions.

    Hell, fill them with enough guns and they could just put them in international waters. If any of these are launched, shall we start the pool on how long until the "Google fighting Piracy" joke headlines?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 06, 2008 @02:47PM (#24902649)

    [citation needed]

  • by barzok (26681) on Saturday September 06, 2008 @03:04PM (#24902819)

    Ships are going to be tricky but designs meant to keep salt spray out may be workable.

    It's not like the US Navy, every cruise line, and countless shipbuilders haven't ever put a computer on a seagoing vessel before.

    "May be workable"? I'd say it's been solved many times over.

  • by pushing-robot (1037830) on Saturday September 06, 2008 @03:06PM (#24902851)

    If Google (or Microsoft, or Apple, or..) doesn't patent every single idea they come up with now, someone else will sue them for it later on. If you were sued as often as Google [google.com], you'd learn to CYA every chance you could get. Such insanity is the price of doing business in the USA.

    So owning patents (frivolous or not) is neutral. Releasing patents to the public is good. Suing others over frivolous patents is evil.

    Google may not be doing "good", but they're still following their mantra.

  • by Tubal-Cain (1289912) on Saturday September 06, 2008 @03:11PM (#24902919) Journal

    Hell, fill them with enough guns and they could just put them in international waters.

    That's one long fiber-optic cord you are proposing. Somehow I doubt people would put up with satellite's latency.

  • Re:Cooling (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Venik (915777) on Saturday September 06, 2008 @03:12PM (#24902929)

    Russia's "Bazalt" naval weapons manufacturer recently proposed arming commercial vessels with automatic grenade launchers to deter pirates. There is an idea for Google! They can start with grenades and later upgrade to anti-ship missiles. Or just build an aircraft carrier and save on future operating costs and upgrades :)

  • by maxume (22995) on Saturday September 06, 2008 @03:16PM (#24903003)

    The Navy isn't comparing the costs of those computers to computers in a data center somewhere on land.

  • Re:SS Google (Score:2, Insightful)

    by hedwards (940851) on Saturday September 06, 2008 @03:27PM (#24903121)

    Sigh, I really wish people would stop with this meme. Compared to a lot of other countries, we're not that bad. I mean try posting history lessons about WWII in Europe or Japan. Or anything which isn't particularly flattering to the government in China. I'm sure that's not even a comprehensive list.

    But, the suggestion that the US is worse than other countries, is naive at best. Realistically, the US government just gets more focus than other nations do.

  • Re:Cooling (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 06, 2008 @04:02PM (#24903607)

    somehow you think that it won't pollute the area that it is in?

    remember that heat can be considered pollution as well.

    i live close to San Onofre nuclear power plant, and the hot discharge from the plant has completely changed the flora and fauna along that section of the coast.

  • Re:Cooling (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Doctor Morbius (1183601) on Saturday September 06, 2008 @04:13PM (#24903727)
    If the energy to power the data center comes from fossil fuels then it wouldn't matter whether it was located on land or on the ocean. The same amount of heating would occur. If they wind up using wave, solar and wind power to provide power to the oceanic data center then there would be no net increase in warming. Not only that but the oceanic data center powered by green power would reduce demand on the local power grid in a city. Using cold sea water to cool the equipment is far more efficient than using AC.
  • Re:SS Google (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Adambomb (118938) on Saturday September 06, 2008 @04:26PM (#24903873) Journal

    First off, you're exactly right that compared to many many countries, America is not THAT bad. Also, you're exactly right that the reason the US receives so much focus is the fact that America has been a huge influence on the world at large this past century or so.

    What saddens me is America used to be a place that believed in certain values as being sacrosanct and would fight to the death to defend those values. The americans at those times would follow their values regardless of what was thought of them or how it compared to other countries. It's sad to see that giving way to the apathy of "at least better than the worst".

    Comparing your achievements to your goals is the only metric worth having. Comparing your achievements to the achievements of others is the beginning of the path to obscurity.

    Basically, ever since vietnam america has backpedaled from the original ideals to a state of doing just enough to still be considered good while doing anything possible to reach the desired goals. Many people like to blame Bush for the current state of american foreign policy and corporate/environmental policies but the seeds of this began way back spanning both sides. The democrats slowly degenerated into nanny-statists and the republicans seems to have shifted to a complete opposite of the original states-rights conservatives where they want a monolithic powerful executive branch.

    On the plus side though, the way america is arranged this can always change again. This is exactly because certain atrocities are still impossible within america and certain liberties are available that are not available in all other countries.

    I'm glad the founding fathers had ink though, at least that can keep people fighting against the more ridiculous of interpretations or even downright ignoring of the constitution. Obviously i'm not american myself, although i have lived there about as long as i've lived here in canada overall so i think i have a pretty good picture of the kinds of mindsets exist in new england, maryland, and colorado at least.

    Please note that with the generalizations concerning political parties, I'm only meaning that they seem that way >51%. There are always exceptions.

"Text processing has made it possible to right-justify any idea, even one which cannot be justified on any other grounds." -- J. Finnegan, USC.

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