Charlie Rose Interviews Google’s Larry Page: Clunky Computers, Powerful AI, And The Future

Charlie Rose sat down with Google’s Larry Page to talk turkey about the present and future of Google and technology at a TED talk, and the main takeaway is that the most exciting innovations are yet to come.

If there was any doubt about Google’s intentions in the AI space, making computers smarter, Page made it clear how Google sees things shaping up in the years to come. “Computing’s kind of a mess,” he said. “Your computer doesn’t know where you are, what you know, what you’re doing. We’re trying to make devices work, to understand your context and what you might need.” (One could argue that there are a lot of people who like it the way it is.)

He also noted that Android Wear is a step in that direction, and further down that road, Google acquired a UK startup called Deep Mind that boasts next-level artificial intelligence that should eventually make its way into Google devices and services.

Rose Page
(Credit: TED)

When it comes to privacy, many are perturbed by a company like Google that has so much of our personal data, but Page seems to understand the tension of privacy, particularly as it pertains to security. “You can’t have privacy without security,” he said before expressing his dismay over the government’s skullduggery. “For me, it’s tremendously disappointing that the government secretly did all this and didn’t tell us. We can’t have democracy if we’re having to protect you and our users from the government over stuff we’ve never had a conversation about.”

He made another comment that sums up the current wave of technological innovation quite well. “Invention is not enough,” he said, meaning that you can’t just come up with a great idea, patent it, and expect the world to change. You have to make something with it, and Google (among many others these days) is a brilliant example of that. We hear about some amazing new tech that a company is developing, and within a year suddenly it’s a Real Thing.

Page also noted that they’re “very close” to a driverless car--he says Google has driven some 100,000 miles--and that the company’s Project Loon Internet-via-balloon project is coming along.