Google's Eric Schmidt Tells Israeli Audience: “The Future is Just Starting”
Chirman Addresses Participants at Big Tent Conference in Tel Aviv
Addressing the audience at a conference in Tel Aviv, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt said that Google’s Israeli-based development centres are the most efficient and that, due to their worth, they are being expanding regularly.
“We love Israel,” Schmidt told the crowd during Google’s Big Tent conference, which brought him to the Jewish state for the first time. Schmidt even went on to praise Israel’s salespeople who he called “the best in the world”, and lauded them for contributing to his company’s profit margin.
The Big Tent Conference was created to explore whether the Internet is creating a new political agenda and how it is shifting power in society. With speakers drawn from politics, business and the media, they will debate whether new technologies are really shifting the political discourse or whether these technologies simply duplicate traditional power relationships.
While heaping praise on the IDF for training a generation of computer people who fully understand data analysis, Schmidt added: "The dictators in Egypt, Libya, and Tunisia were old men who did not understand the internet. Shutting down the internet in Arab countries was a step too far. When the government silences the internet for its people, it's a sign that it is scared."
Ironically, the Big Tent Conference took place just as Facebook announced that it was buying Face.com, the Israeli company that provides facial-recognition technology, for a price tag of somewhere between $80 million and $100 million.
Addressing the Arab Spring, Schmidt commented that "the dictators of the Arab world were censoring everything except for the Internet; they were too old and didn’t know about [it]."
"People should not be afraid of technology," Schmidt said. "The future is just starting."