Google Invests in 180 satellites to spread internet access worldwide

Google’s plans for satellite-based internet access just got a little more concrete. The Wall Street Journal hears that the search firm is preparing to build 180 “small, high capacity” satellites (not pictured here) that will go into low orbit and provide internet connections to underserved areas. While details aren’t forthcoming about the machines, there may be more on the way; reportedly, the company could “double” its vehicle count if all goes well. A spokeswoman didn’t confirm or deny the efforts, but did note that having an internet link “significantly improves people’s lives.”

The initiative might be very expensive, with tipsters estimating a cost between $1 billion to $3 billion. However, the satellites could eventually pay for themselves. They would really be an extension of the thinking behind the balloons from Project Loon — getting more people online increases the number of people who can see ads, improving Google’s bottom line. Any orbital internet service would most likely serve as a complement to Project Loon, providing data in far-flung, sparsely populated regions while the balloons handle places with greater demand.

The history of the selfie

We live in the age of the selfie. A fast self-portrait, made with a smartphone’s camera and immediately distributed and inscribed into a network, is an instant visual communication of where we are, what we’re doing, who we think we are, and who we think is watching. Selfies have changed aspects of social interaction, body language, self-awareness, privacy, and humor, altering temporality, irony, and public behavior. It’s become a new visual genre—a type of self-portraiture formally distinct from all others in history. Selfies have their own structural autonomy. This is a very big deal for art. Here are some interesting facts about the selfie.

Levar Burton’s reaction to reaching $1 million

Reading Rainbow is about the ultimate campaign. Teaching kids to read, giving it away for free, and having LeVar involved at every level. This thing is probably going to hit 3mil which is enough to put it with the all time highest funded projects. What makes it special is that it’s mainly being funded to help other people rather than for a product solely for personal use.