Mobile phone user interfaces have come a long way, but the humble copy and paste remains fairly clunky. Voice-controlled assistants like Cortana and Siri are bridging the gap, but sometimes, you just want to take text from one app and stick it into another. And Google will start predicting what that text might be when its "Copyless Paste" arrives on Android.
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Crunching the numbers on the millions upon millions of Reddit comments just to crack the code on upvotes would be difficult work. Thankfully, two software engineers, a Google big data project, and some careful analysis have already done the heavy lifting, revealing the simple trick to getting the top comment in most threads: get there first.
In the midst of an ugly legal battle with the US Department of Labor over the gender wage gap, Google updated its blog on Tuesday to assert its commitment to paying women and men at the company equally. For a company with totally unremarkable diversity numbers, Google is weirdly nonspecific about how it addresses pay inequity in the post, saying both that it doesn't underpay women, but won't support having a third-party certify that.
Google's AlphaGo made history last year by becoming the first machine to defeat a top-ranked human Go player. It was an important AI milestone, but AlphaGo isn't getting off that easily. Next month, the expert system will partake in a five-day tournament that will pit it against China's top Go players — including Ke Jie, the world's best player. Humans, the time for our redemption is at hand!
It's hard to stand out in the smartphone world, especially if your phone doesn't do anything unique. LG knows this and has never shied away from trying new ideas. It was one of the first companies to make use of curved screens, and last year, it released an insane smartphone with a "magic slot" that let you plug in accessories, including a camera and a speaker. The phone was a disaster. It was poorly reviewed, and few people bought it. This year, LG is hitting the reset button with the G6, a modern flagship with all the essentials and not much else.
Privacy advocates across the US let out a collective sob this week when its Congress dismantled a set of Obama-era internet privacy rules. In effect, the Republicans just gave big telecom companies unfettered access to your browsing history and will even let ISPs sell that data for profit. As we've argued before: this sucks.
Fitness trackers aren't what they used to be. The fad gadget you strap to your wrist has seen a precipitous fall in the last year. Pebble closed its doors after releasing a solid fitness tracker, and Fitbit has struggled (though we liked its new Fitbit Alta HR). There's also the fact that fitness trackers, while great for athletes, seem to not actually help most of us lose weight.
It's been a tough few weeks for Google. Several companies have pulled their ads from its network after various news outlets revealed that those ads have appeared on extremist, racist or otherwise offensive videos. But never fear. A Google executive says the problem is, actually, small. And not just very small, in fact. Not even very, very small. But very, very, very small.
Last month Google filed a lawsuit against Uber alleging that the ridesharing company colluded with a former Google engineer to steal trade secrets and proprietary designs from the Waymo self-driving car unit. Yesterday, Uber's lawyers filed a motion to move the case into the dark hole of arbitration.
Yesterday, I wrote a short post about Google's Top Stories module. If you were in the US and googled "great barrier reef" on Wednesday, you'd be presented with a Breitbart article filled with ravings about how climate change isn't real, featured at the very top in the site's highlighted "Top Stories" box. When I went to the company's press team to see what was up, they assured me it was perfectly normal for an article written by a noted climate change denier to get pinned to the top of Google's results.
Coral reef experts and climate scientists agree that due to rising temperatures, Australia's Great Barrier Reef is pretty much screwed. But when you search Google US for "Great Barrier Reef", that's not all that you'll find. Instead, at the very top of the page in the Top Stories module, you'll see a Breitbart article dismissing the damage done to the famed coral reef that sounds like it was written by a university student Republican who hasn't slept in 72 hours.
Ten years ago the first thing you needed to load on a brand new computer were anti-virus and malware applications. The internet was a mine field of malicious content that could infect your entire home network with one errant click. Yet things have changed dramatically. Windows has much more robust security options built in, browsers are smarter, and, hopefully, so are the users.
For years, Google has been trying to reduce how much space images take up on the web. Most of those efforts have been based around its proprietary (and largely ignored by non-Google entities) WebP format, but a new project out of the company's research and open source divisions could help make JPEG images — one of the most common image formats on the planet — up to 35 per cent smaller, while retaining their quality.
Good news for anyone with an Android phone that isn't a Pixel: Google Assistant is rolling out to more phones, new and old. That means many more of us will be able to take advantage of Google's latest and smartest AI. There are some things both the Google Assistant and Siri are excellent at — like pulling up emails or showing photos you've taken in the last week in a specific city (Apple really seems to be catching up to Google in the image analysis department).