Google continues to flex it’s purchasing muscles, this time around acquiring design talent for Google X in the form of Gecko Design (no price has been mentioned). Gecko Design is a mechanical engineering and product design company. As we all know, Google has gone into some interesting industries expanding beyond its humble search engine beginnings into robotics, self driving cars and Google Glass. Google X is the ultra research wing of Google. They are the ones pushing the boundaries and trying to make ideas into practical things.
There are eight projects being developed at Google X. Projects that have been revealed are Google’s self-driving car, Google Glass eyewear that includes a screen and camera, a wind energycompany called Makani Power, Google Contact Lenses that monitor blood glucose levels, Project Loon, which provides internet service via balloons in the stratosphere, an artificial neural network for speech recognition and computer vision; and the web of things.
Projects that Google X has considered and rejected include a space elevator, which was deemed to be currently unfeasible; a hoverboard, which was determined to be too costly relative to the societal benefits; a user-safe jetpack, which was thought to be too loud and energy-wasting; and teleportation, which was found to violate the laws of physics.
While Google X projects are often referred to as “moonshots” within the company, not all so-described moonshots are part of Google X. For example, Calico, Google’s life extension project, is considered a moonshot but is not a part of Google X. The same is true of Google’s project to build robots for businesses.
In October 2013, the existence of four Google barges was revealed, with the vessels registered under the dummy corporation By And Large. Two of the barges have a superstructure whose construction has been kept under the utmost secrecy, while speculations indicate they could be used as marketing for, and stores for, Google Glass.
The reasons behind the addition of the Gecko crew will likely not be released (beyond what’s been said for press releases), at least for now. But you can bet Google isn’t buying these guys for their jokes, usually they’re after top notch talent that will help them reach their goals. Looking forward to what Google X is bringing to us in the future. What do you think of Google X and the Gecko acquisition? Let us know in the comments below or on Google+, Facebook and Twitter.