Google and the World Brain

Vasconcelos Library Doc

This month’s issue of “Wired” magazine features a very lengthy, in-depth article by Stephen Levy in which the author interviews Google’s Larry Page. It covers all of the massive projects the company is undertaking, from a car that drives itself to the Google Books project, which still aims to scan every book in existence and create a repository of human knowledge that is indexed, searchable, and portable. But as benevolent as that may seem on surface value, Ben Lewis’s Google and the World Brain takes a hard look at the Books project itself, the ideas behind it, and the proponents and opponents the company faces in the battle over digitalization of the printed world. The “World Brain” part of the title comes from a collection of essays H.G. Wells wrote in the late 1930s where he described a World Encyclopedia that would be free to everyone and full of all information.

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