Google might have got a patent back in 2014, and then Sony in 2016, but scientists at the University of California San Diego have actually created a prototype contact lens that lets you “zoom” when you double-blink. Well, to be more accurate, it only functions when a specially made rig double blinks, but still, it’s a start.
Not everybody around the world has the easy access to mobile data or high-end smartphones that some of us do, and for those people, many online services have cut down versions of their apps that run on lower-end phones and useless bandwidth. Facebook, Messenger, Instagram and even Twitter all have “Lite” versions of their apps for those users.
Now, Google has announced Gallery Go, a slimline version of Google Photos designed for working offline to help those on limited or unreliable internet in developing markets like Nigeria. And it only takes 10MB of storage space on their phone.
When the iPhone X came along with its Portrait Lighting effects, a lot of people were very impressed. Apple was even claiming that you don’t need studio lighting at all anymore or any other fancy equipment. You just need your phone. And while the iPhone hasn’t taken over as the portrait photographer’s camera of choice, it’s an intriguing concept.
A concept so intriguing that researchers and engineers at UC San Diego and Google have taken it a few steps further. They’ve trained neural networks to relight portraits after the fact without requiring any 3D depth data and with a lot more control than a few Apple presets.
Researcher Robert Wiblin over at 80,000 Hours spotted something quite interesting about Google Photos recently. He noticed that privately shared links became publicly accessible. He told some friends who use Google Photos and they didn’t believe him. After all, why would Google allow such an oversight? Surely if you’re sharing privately with a specific person, then only that person can see it, right?
Apparently not. After doing a little digging, Robert was able to demonstrate that these privately shared links are publicly accessible from any Google account, or even if you’re not logged into Google at all – as shown when he was able to access a “private” shared link from an Incognito browser window.
Remember when Google cloud storage used to be quite simple? You had one account to which you uploaded pretty much anything and then it was available everywhere? Yeah, well, not so much anymore. Starting from July 10th, Google will completely separate Google Photos from Google Drive. This means that if you currently back up your photos to one of them, they won’t be there in the other.
There are so many new features coming to smartphone cameras these days that it can be difficult to keep up. You’ve got all kinds of HDR, fake bokeh, high resolution and high detail modes that all work in a bunch of different ways. Most of these features are there to overcome limitations in the tiny sensors that smartphones tend to contain.
One feature is Google’s Super Resolution algorithm. A computational photography technique that essentially replaces the demosaicing process used on most digital cameras. It’s quite fascinating, looks much better than most of the alternatives, and it’s pretty clever how it works.
Google has suspended business operations with Huawei, effective immediately, according to Reuters. They say that a source close to the matter has told them Google was forced to suspend business with Huawei that “requires the transfer of hardware and software products”.
What this essentially means is that all future Hauwei products are cut off. If you already have a Huawei, though, you might be ok. Probably. At least, for now. A Google spokesperson told Reuters that “Google Play and the security protections from Google Play Protect will continue to function on existing Huawei devices”
Android’s openness is something of a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it allows just about anybody to (relatively) easily write and publish mobile apps through the Play Store. But it also allows anybody to write and publish apps through the play store. And the checks to get apps approved aren’t quite as stringent as those found in Apple’s App Store.
But Google is doing something about it. They’ve just pulled 29 camera and photo apps from the Play Store after they were reportedly pushing intrusive ads, promoting porn, scamming users via phishing and even stealing content. But these apps have already been downloaded millions of times.
You know what Google news results look like when the page doesn’t load properly? If EU Copyright Directive Article 11 and 13 pass, all Google news results could look like this: with blank image thumbnails and without short snippets of text.