The radio-enabled, solar-powered balloons are to be released super-high-up (twice as high as planes fly, says the Wall Street Journal), where they will travel the globe via wind, trading off departures and landings relay-race-style. All this is to be monitored by air traffic controllers, the company claims.
The initiative aims to induct remote regions into the technological revolution, potentially transforming thousands of lives with the opportunities and education afforded by the web. It is time to "give the internet to the entire world," says Google, estimating that for every one person surfing the web, there's two people who aren't online.
Maybe they don't wanna be online? Too bad. Like it or not, as soon as one of Google's jellyfish-shaped balloons lands in their neighborhood, technological temptation has arrived.
Obviously, that's downplaying the benefits of greater connectivity — there's much this project hopes to achieve by increasing ways to reach out in natural disaster situations and so forth.
"The idea may sound a bit crazy—and that’s part of the reason we’re calling it Project Loon—but there’s solid science behind it," project organizers wrote in a company announcement late Friday.
But first, Google is testing the balloons in New Zealand to see if this balloon idea actually...takes off, according to The Wall Street Journal.
After all, it sounds like a pretty complicated endeavor. Project leader Mike Cassidy admitted it involved some pretty "complex algorithms," according to Mashable.
But videos almost always make things easier to understand, right? Watch it here: