Google Web Accelerator

4 05 2005

Web Accelerator.gifThose Google folks are putting out one innovation after another. This time it’s Web Accelerator‘s turn. Is this yet another byproduct of their 20% personal time policy?

This is very different from the prefetching feature I wrote about before, as all pages are accelerated and not just search results. Also, with the Web Accelerator, Google’s network infrastructure is used to provide caching, compression and up-to-date checking services.

Too bad it’s Windows-only.

(Via Steve Rubel.)

Update: Mike Lambert has an interesting opinion on Google’s motives behind giving out all that bandwidth for free:

Instead of using a random surfer model, Google can use a real surfer model, based on the aggregate web traffic of the people using their Web Accelerator. They can discover /exactly/ how the Google Juice should flow in the real world.

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5 05 2005
Michele M Web Log

Google Web Accelerator Beta

Google ha tirato fuori un altro utile servizio per tutti…o quasi. Da ieri e’ possibile infatti installare sul proprio browser (IE e Firefox) il Google Web Accelerator che sembra velocizzare il caricamento delle pagine che avverrebbe utilizzando i va…

24 09 2006
The Ghost of PT Barnum

Giggling Madly Here – PT Barnum Would Have Been So Proud!

This is a great program for those users who don’t know anything at all regarding how computers and/or the internet actually works, and who just want to experience the “feel good illusion” of (not really) increased speed by having this entirely useless acceleration program on their hard drive.

I always laugh out loud whenever anyone proudly exclaims: “The program ‘says’ I saved 6.9 hours, so I’m very satisfied!” Big deal; the program could also say: “You’re now twice as good-looking” or perhaps even “Congratulations you’re a millionaire!” Without being able to verify any programs’ “claims” (or better put: assertions) it is just that: A totally unverifiable assertion!

Still you’ve got to admire Google’s chutzpa here! I’m guessing that it has to be the most hilarious bit of shell-game spyware ever invented by any company in the entire history of computer or Internet use and development.

Very clever really, when you consider that the trade off is that users “think” they’re getting “increased” internet speed; in exchange for revealing exact the name of every single webpage that you ever visit from the moment that you install Google Web Accelerator until (hopefully) the moment you wise up and remove it.

After Google Web Accelerator is installed it does absolutely nothing to improve browsing. Also Google Web Accelerator collects copies of web pages, (including prefetched pages that you did not even visit), in the Google Web Accelerator cache on your computer.

All this does in effect; is collect and store a gazillion MB of temp files every time you use it for a session of surfing. Try using something like CCleaner after running Google Web Accelerator and browsing the internet for a few hours and see the results for yourself!

And Google gets to know the exact the name of every single webpage that you ever visit for products, news, banking, whatever! This is very valuable information to have; not only does Google know everything you click on, but you get absolutely nothing in return for this info.

Finally, Google admits on their own support page that any and all passwords, e-mail addresses etc. you enter in a web form (e. g. when purchasing an item online) will be funneled via their systems. If you enter personally identifiable information (such as an email address) onto a form on an unencrypted web page, the sites will send this information through Google.

Had he lived long enough to see this, P.T. Barnum; the person who coined the phrase: “A Sucker is Born Every Minute” would most certainly consider those who download, install and leave this program on their computers to be suckers indeed!

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