#256 - Tech News

3 minute read

Motto: Google's Indexing the Internet, Alphabetically

I'm embarrassed by that motto.

Trebuchet is my favorite font. Presuming your browser didn't hijack my typeface, you should be reading this in Trebuchet. Isn't it great?

I wrote a whole post about my height and relationship to basketball. Unfortunately, due to circumstances beyond my control, I have lost that post. Literally, I lost the USB drive that I had the post on. My current theory is that it was on Oceanic Flight 815.


A few days back, I was shocked to read that Google's founders were creating a new company, under which Google would fall. The new company: Alphabet. I thought it was going to be huge news. Then, I figured out it really doesn't change anything. THEN, I realized it's changing everything... eventually. This move is not immediately interesting, but could eventually be a very large headline in a "History of Consumer Technology" book.

Google Hangouts is perhaps finally getting the love & attention it has deserved from day one. This link is what I'm referring to.

Android "M" now has an official name and version number. The name: "Marshmallow"... which was fairly well expected. The version number: 6.0. This was not expected for what appeared to be a fairly small release. Seriously, there's not too much there from what I can see (which is admittedly very little, from this chair). See the Top 5 for the new features of Android Marshmallow. Spoiler alert - I'm skeptical/underwhelmed.

I added a new feature to the Life Tracker. First one in quite some time. Basically, now it gets a weather forecast for the upcoming day. It used to only get the weather history for the previous day. This new change will give me a glimpse at the upcoming weather for the day & will prevent holes in the data when OpenWeatherMap's API honks up.

Top 5: Android Marshmallow Features
5. Android Pay - because Google Wallet has been a terrible flop in the real world, Google is reworking the system and rebranding under the Android moniker. Worked for Android TV, didn't it? (didn't it?... didn't it?!)
4. Fingerprints - a good payment system needs a way to authenticate your payments that isn't obtrusive to the user. Fingerprints are not good ways to authenticate... but I am 100% sure that despite that well-founded opinion I am going to use mine this way anyways.
3. App Permissions - the new permissions system pops up only when the app needs them. This is the way it should have been all along.
2. USB-C. Android phones are moving to the USB Type C (USB-C) standard. NOTE THIS IS THE FIRST THING ON THIS LIST THAT ISN'T JUST AN iOS FEATURE PARITY UPGRADE... and even this could be argued to be a move closer to the iPhone. We're getting a reversible connector. 
1. Now on Tap - supposedly this is "huge". It's basically a way to run Google search magic on whatever's on your screen. It's a vaguely defined feature that will probably be underwhelming at first but get better over time. This is the only truly new thing I really remember from the Google I/O announcement.

"WOW YOU'RE TALL! You must looove basketball!"
- This was the quote from the Column about my height and basketball that I lost. For the record, it's been nearly 5 whole hours since someone asked if I play basketball -