Frequently Asked Questions About Google Ant
Q: Am I hearing you correctly?
A: Google Ant is an effort to individually track all the ants on Earth.
Q: Aren't there a lot of ants out there?
A: Estimates range from a hundred trillion to a quadrillion or so ants. This project isn’t designed to estimate how many there are. It's literally to keep track of every one of them. Through the Google Ant app and website, users will be able to watch the planet's ant colonies and individual ant movements in real-time.
Q: Is the study of ants called antology?
Q: Hate to bring this up, but why?
A: We've already created an immersive way to "look around" any street on the planet. We can translate any language instantaneously. We know where all the people are at any given moment. We have massive buildings full of computers. It's a sort of "now what?" situation.
Q: Will you really ID every ant?
A: Radio-frequency-emitting nanotags, similar to those in humans, will be attached to each ant, even extra-small ones.
Q: I have ants at home. Can I sign them up?
A: No worries, we got 'em.
Q: I heard an ant can lift 50 times his weight.
A: Yeah, they had that in the Ant Man movie.
Q: Can people suggest names for individual ants? What was that about nanotag trackers in people?
A: Our tracking system will assign each ant its own alphanumeric code, like a license plate, but with hundreds of digits that only a nerd could remember. Via the Google Ant app, hobbyists will be able to "adopt" ants and assign them aliases on a first come, first served basis.
Q: Will the Google Ant app be available for the iPhone?
A: No. Apple is doing flies.
(from Issue #12)