And now for a bit of silly: What Google Autocomplete tells us about the 2016 presidential candidates (The Ds and Rs, anyway.) Or what people are searching for in reference to the candidates.
Google+ Photos is shutting down on August 1. I can’t say I’m sorry about this. Google+ Photos was a bit of a mess and I really missed Picasa. “The shutdown of Google+ Photos will start on August 1. According to Google, the Android version will go first; shortly thereafter, the web and iOS versions will go dark. Your photos hosted on Google+ will automatically migrate over to photos.google.com, their new home. Alternatively, you’ll also be able to grab all your photos via Google Takeout if you just want out all together.”
A rumor is running around that Google is going to sell custom e-mail addresses for a monthly fee. “As you can see in the screenshot above, the prices start at $2 a month which will give users their own custom Gmail address, letting them choose “firstname.lastname@example.org”, subject to availability of course. However for $2, that’s all you will be getting and you won’t be getting additional storage. However if you want added storage, you can pay $5 a month which is more or less the same feature, but with 30GB of email storage, online support, and access to business tools.”
I love Digg Reader, which I believe I’ve mentioned until y’all are good and sick of it. But there’s more to Digg than just the reader; it looks like it might be getting back into community as well. “When we rebuilt and relaunched Digg three years ago (ah, #tbt!) we shelved pretty much all of the community features. Our sense was that Digg’s community had almost entirely disappeared. We decided to strike out in a different direction, until the time seemed right to bring conversations back in. A few months ago, our designers and developers started to build. In the past couple of weeks, lots of people have been talking about what makes a good (and bad) community. For our part, we threw some pointed questions out to Digg’s users, especially since we’re in the middle of building community features. Last week, about 1,500 of you were nice enough to […]
Interesting. The White House has put up a Twitter account specifically about the Iran agreement. I’m pointing this out not because of my opinions about the Iran negotiations (they do not belong in ResearchBuzz) but because this is such a huge shift. Actively developing social media nodes for individual political policies. Feels like a huge deal.
Just wow: The Smithsonian is teaming up with Kickstarter. “The Smithsonian is embarking on a multi-project partnership with Kickstarter, the funding platform for creative projects. The inaugural project will support conservation of Neil Armstrong’s Apollo 11 spacesuit at the National Air and Space Museum. The funds also will be used to digitize and exhibit the 46-year-old suit. The campaign will start July 20, the anniversary of the first walk on the moon in 1969.”
Eeesh. Yahoo did not have a great quarter. “Yahoo’s adjusted revenue for the quarter at $1.04 billion saw no change from the previous quarter or the year-ago quarter, and it just barely surpassed analyst forecasts of $1.03 billion. The company said it made a net loss of $22 million, or 2 cents per share, from a profit of $270 million, or 26 cents per share, a year ago.”
For the serious nerds only: 9 Things You Didn’t Know About Google’s Undersea Cable. “Undersea cables carry virtually all transoceanic Internet data these days, replacing satellites as the preferred medium. Google and some telecom companies have invested in one of them, called FASTER, that will stretch 9,000 kilometers (5,592 miles) between the U.S. and Japan and is due to go into operation next year. With six fiber-pairs in the cable, each carrying 100 wavelengths at 100 gigabits per second, it will have a peak capacity of 60 terabits per second (Tbps). That’s about 10 million times faster than a standard cable modem.”
Windows 10 is going to be a free upgrade. “Microsoft has reversed earlier policies regarding the cost of upgrading to Windows 10, and will make it free to upgrade. Back in March I wrote Microsoft accepts the inevitable, takes first steps toward making Windows and Office free, and in October 2014, What Apple’s zero pricing of iOS, Mac OS X, and iWork means.”
In my Real Job ™, one of the things I do is buy advertising. And I stopped buying cable advertising about three years ago, because the writing was on the wall as far as what online video was doing to cable viewership. Now the writing is in really, really big letters: YouTube is bigger than cable. “Google executives say the site outstrips any single U.S. cable network in the key 18- to 49-year-old demographic, and that’s one of the reasons the tech firm’s stock price went soaring in the aftermath of the earnings call. In the hours that followed it jumped as high as 11 percent above its pre-announcement figure.”
Google Photo apparently keeps backing up your pictures even after you delete the app. ZOMBIE APP! Well, not really. “It turns out that when you turn the ‘back up & sync’ setting on for Photos in your Android phone, you’re not actually accessing the setting in the app, but in the phone itself. If you delete the app, the setting remains, so all your photos will continue to be backed up to Google Photos even though you no longer use it. Since most people probably don’t make a deep dive on their phone settings on a regular basis, it’s pretty much a set it and forget it thing, it’s very possible that many users have photos in the cloud they don’t know about.”
Evan Williams wants developers to come back to Twitter. “Williams also suggested that it was time for Twitter to look for new ways to connect with software developers and to take another stab at making Twitter a platform. Twitter famously went to war with developers several years ago when it restricted developers’ access to the API that allowed them to grab Twitter data for their own use.” I think he’s got the right idea, but I also think if Twitter wants developers to come back, they’re going to have to do a lot of groveling.
Google has launched a competitor to iBeacon. “If you’re not familiar, beacons are low-energy battery-friendly hardware that use Bluetooth to transmit data. Since Bluetooth connections have a much smaller range public Wi-Fi and work indoors unlike GPS, it allows retailers, developers and companies to precisely pinpoint the user’s location and send relevant information based on where consumers currently are.” iBeacon, if you don’t know, is from Apple. Facebook is getting into beacons as well.
Google accidentally let the lid off “right to be forgotten” requests. “Less than 5% of nearly 220,000 individual requests made to Google to selectively remove links to online information concern criminals, politicians and high-profile public figures, the Guardian has learned, with more than 95% of requests coming from everyday members of the public. The Guardian has discovered new data hidden in source code on Google’s own transparency report that indicates the scale and flavour of the types of requests being dealt with by Google – information it has always refused to make public. “