Tag Archives: internet

This Baking Artist Just Won The Internet With Her Realistic Breaking Bad Cake

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You’ve never seen Mike Ehrmantraut from Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul like this before. For this eerily-realistic cake, Mike shows his sweeter side. Created by Natalie of Sideserf Cake Studio in Austin, Texas, this incredible cake perfectly captures Mike Ehrmantraut’s persona. This cake sculpture is so realistic, it doesn’t even look edible! But that’s just because Natalie happens to be unbelievably talented at creating realistic cakes that don’t look like cakes. It’s kind of her thing now and the internet is beginning to take notice.

More info: Instagram, Facebook (h/t: sobadsogood)

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“I started sculpting with cake after I got a bachelors in Fine Art. I see cake as just another art medium,” she explains.

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Design You Trust. Design, Culture & Society.

This Baking Artist Just Won The Internet With Her Realistic Breaking Bad Cake

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You’ve never seen Mike Ehrmantraut from Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul like this before. For this eerily-realistic cake, Mike shows his sweeter side. Created by Natalie of Sideserf Cake Studio in Austin, Texas, this incredible cake perfectly captures Mike Ehrmantraut’s persona. This cake sculpture is so realistic, it doesn’t even look edible! But that’s just because Natalie happens to be unbelievably talented at creating realistic cakes that don’t look like cakes. It’s kind of her thing now and the internet is beginning to take notice.

More info: Instagram, Facebook (h/t: sobadsogood)

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“I started sculpting with cake after I got a bachelors in Fine Art. I see cake as just another art medium,” she explains.

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Design You Trust. Design, Culture & Society.

‘Stop taking down the U.S. internet,’ WikiLeaks implores its supporters

In a message sent out via Twitter (one of the many internet sites affected by the attack on Dyn), WikiLeaks implored its “supporters” to stop attacking the web at large. “Mr. Assange is still alive and WikiLeaks is still publishing.”

The post ‘Stop taking down the U.S. internet,’ WikiLeaks implores its supporters appeared first on Digital Trends.

Digital Trends

The Most Mesmerizing Video on the Internet: “The Art of the Marbler”

Here’s a gift for your Friday, all thanks to the internet—this film made for Douglas Cockerell & Son marbled papers, a company founded on marbling paper for bookbinding. The backstory of Cockerell Marbling is actually quite fascinating: Started by Douglas Cockerell, the hand marbling company was founded “to restore ancient and valuable books and other documents.” It also seems that the Cockerell family had a long lineage of creatives and artists, including Douglas’s brother, a curator and good friend of the “grandfather of the Arts & Crafts Movement” John Ruskin. 

The video shows marbling expert William Chapman in the 1970s pulling some astonishing tricks out of his hat:

We’ve also taken the liberty of making some gif highlights for your viewing pleasure:

And in case you’re wondering where to find these papers, sadly it looks as if the Cockerell marbling studio shut down in 2012 after over 100 years of hand production. Thankfully, its legacy still lives on through this awesome demo film. 


Core77

How to Build an Internet of Things Apocalypse

Start with the best of intentions.

“What if we could put the power of the Internet of Things (IoT) into the hands of many more people than ever before?”

That may have been the question they asked themselves when they started to build it. The historical records from that time are patchy at best as we work to rebuild civilization, now decades after the world was bricked. We do know that what started as a ground up maker movement for hardware development soon ballooned into a full-fledged IoT authoring tool sometime around the year 2015 or 2016. It reduced the time to develop blended hardware and software products from months to days and finally to hours and minutes. Makers began building prototypes and deploying products faster than they could create and share PowerPoints to explain them (note: while we don’t know what the origin of the word “PowerPoint” is, we believe it has to do with some sort of sleep aid for corporations that could at times be illustrative of something called “synergy”). The resulting proliferation of connected things entering the market seemed like the beginnings of a new industrial revolution.

Lurking behind the scenes, complexity began to quietly run amok. Each creator had the power to put the most complexity possible into solving the least complex of tasks. Entire operating systems that were once built to run as general purpose environments — used by knowledge workers who spent their careers figuring out the idiosyncrasies of their PC — were gleefully embedded in doorbells that never needed to communicate more than whether they were pushed or not.

“Why not?”

“You never know when we might want to add a feature!”

Ignore the parable of Brooms and Buckets.

We have uncovered a documentary from the century that preceded the apocalypse that was apparently created to warn future generations of the dangers ahead. So while we believe some citizens of that era understood the risks, they stood idly by as the world raced towards doom. The tale involves a sorcerer’s apprentice who gains a new magical power and soon discovers — too late — that his dreams will lead to unintended consequences — as brooms and buckets of water overwhelm him in a deluge. The creators of the so-called “Internet of Things” soon saw their plans washed away by a sea of magical thinking as well.

Two early signals from the impending doom are telling as we look back in retrospect. In the mid 2000’s it was discovered that a software worm was wiggling its way into programmable logic controllers (PLCs). The things that are used in factories to spin up, modulate, and slow down mechanical functions. These basic devices had been in use for decades to automate factories. The worm, called Stuxnet, was apparently designed to seek out and infect just the PLCs made by a certain set of companies that sold their wares to middle-eastern countries. If the code ever found itself spinning up a centrifuge (to say, purify a radioactive material to make bombs) it would begin to randomly speed up and slow down and in effect destroy the carefully controlled process. We can only imagine that in matters of nuclear war these sorts of deceptions could happen, after all they were trying to save the world. It reminds this historian more of the tale of the band playing on the deck of the Titanic as it sank beneath the waves.

The second signal was far more insidious and shocking. In the year 2015 one of the largest automakers in the world was discovered to have written behaviors into their “things” so that if the vehicles (in this case diesel powered cars touted for their eco-friendliness) ever found themselves being tested by environmental protection groups (and discovered they were being subjected to just this wheel rotation speed, or just that cycle of speeding up and slowing down), the car would send false signals to appear to be far more green than it really was.

What is important about that event is that a hardware modification could have been discovered — that odd exhaust pipe attachment or module with wires running into the ignition system. But a software behavior lurking inside of a physical thing may have been impossible to detect, hidden as it was within millions of lines of code. Given that this deception turns out to have been going on for years (by one of the most upstanding corporate entities in the world at that time), we can only imagine what other early examples of connected things were co-opted for unlawful or damaging effects.

Encourage creators to build products that start with delight and end with dismay.

What was so easy for creators to imagine and build soon drove a shift of complexity from the designer’s shoulders at the time of birth to the end user’s shoulders during the products lifetime. As more and more connected things begged for attention or worse yet, as noted above, colluded with their makers to pull off nefarious schemes, things began to run out of control.

A building with over 28,000 sensors was already a reality in that early time and yet the kernel of an idea, to shift from design for the birth of a disconnected product or place, to the design for its entire lifetime and operation, had yet to find widespread acceptance. Each thing, just like each bucket of water and mop, only asked that IT be paid attention to. The things naturally wanted to take advantage of the Internet part of their thingness and get updated regularly. They sometimes needed to get fixed at random times when something ran amiss or some dangerous bug was discovered. But the myopia of each creator’s vision disregarded the relentless increase of connected things in a single person’s or organization’s life. Just like those mops set loose on the world, emergent behaviors began to arise. This wasn’t surprising to some observers at the time, after all theories about the mind from that era note that consciousness itself may bootstrap up from a vast number of individual (but connected) neurons. They even knew then that one couldn’t slice a brain up and “find” consciousness residing in any particular thing inside the brain. Many IoT products just started off dismaying users, begging for their owner’s attention like a class of inquisitive three year olds who were pretty sure the world revolved around only their own needs. But the relentless increase of connected things surrounding the users soon led to not only dismay but also resignation.

Ignore history.

Looking back at the disaster from this mid-century year of 2050 we are finally able to dissect and expose where the seeds of the event were planted. History books have now tracked the “patient zero” of the apocalypse to a place called Pier 9 built by a company that has now been relegated to the history books known mysteriously as Autodesk. While we can find no record of the company actually making autos or desks themselves they were instrumental in helping others build those things and many other parts of the physical world.

They had embraced the idea of democratizing the act of making things so that far more people could participate in the act of creation. They lowered the friction so that a generation of emerging makers could wield the power of the industrial revolution and enterprise manufacturing for customers as young as four or five years old (seeTinkerplay). This started out well as more entrepreneurs, parents, children, and organizations found that the friction of making physical things was so low they could make solutions that were more capable than the traditional design/manufacturing cycle that had characterized the 20th century. Media was also democratized and new user-generated stories abounded. It seemed like the world was made new as billions of voices could finally be heard. People began to talk about “getting every brain on deck” to solve the hardest problems in the world.

But something strange happened when those things became easier to build with new behaviors embedded directly inside of them (in the form of code) and those things began to talk to each other. The rise of authoring tools like 123D Circuits and 3D printers that could “print” behaviors, connectivity and intelligence directly into things may have been the leading turning point in the exponential increase of complexity in the world.

While the construction of things made of atoms was (and is to this day) naturally bounded by the real world costs of mining and refining and moving materials, things made out of bits were (and are still) practically “free” to copy, change and deploy out into the world. Soon, just like the fabled Amazon fostered a flourishing of self-publishing and the discovery of new authors, the early days of Autodesk’s IoT offerings were heady with early stories of underdogs building amazing connected devices and finding fame and fortune.

“A book from that time named Trillions warned that the act of software development for physical things was more akin to literature than engineering. In this regard, software is more like literature than like a physical artifact: Its quality varies widely with the talents of the individual creator. But unlike literature, the result of such an effort is a product that is destined to be used over and over again by an end user whose motivation for its use is typically not recreational. Indeed, software often runs without anyone’s conscious choice; it’s just part of what happens in the world.” — Trillions, Lucas, Ballay, McManus, 2012

While there was a great deal of top down engineering built into the hardware part of the IoT, largely for ultra-reliability — in the form of battle tested chip designs with billions of transistors that worked day in and day out running code, Moore’s Law and the development of authoring tools for Very Large Scale System Integration (VLSI) hid the need for the bottom up resiliency that natural ecologies have found to be necessary.

In a sense those early creators of computer chips abstracted away some of the messy problems that plagued creators of complex computational things. So some blame for the collapse can be ascribed to them as well. We must also note that the rise of only a few dominant operating systems living on those ultra-reliable chips (and being easily embedded by beginners into every new thing produced by Autodesk’s authoring tools) could be a contributory factor to consider when making your final judgment. This seemingly benign artifact of the history of computing meant that the code being built for an ultra complex system was based on only a few strains of a single kind of “organism.” It appears that the idea of a systems view was missing and the ability to simulate the emergent properties of things connected to other things in any meaningful way was non-existent. When the apocalypse hit very few products built during this flourishing of connected things had enough genetic variety to survive. In retrospect the world didn’t have a chance of making it through the infancy of the Internet of Things.

Bottom up resiliency may be what the maker movement thought it was providing. But because all that work was being done on a very few strains of computational organisms — with no scaffolding from a well-structured ecosystem — they were driven to crash among the rocky shores of the disaster by the siren call of empiricism. “With enough eyeballs every bug is shallow,” you could hear them declare, without realizing they were all focusing their attention under one parking lot light as they searched for their lost keys.

While it’s seductive to think that we could ever rely on a purely bottom up approach to solving problems — by giving many more people the ability to make ever more complex things — it amounts to a philosophy that at best was described by a scientist at the time as “plug and pray.” (See YouTube video).

Empiricism was the watchword of the maker movement, no theorists need apply and science appears to have taken a backseat to the explosive pop culture movement of the time.

End with a whimper.

The day the apocalypse hit was just like any other. People went to work, played with their children, and enjoyed the benefits of a connected life. By mid afternoon people were starting to feel confused by the actions their products were asking them to take, but by this time they had become so reliant on their connected things that they ignored the logic and just did as they were told. By the end of the day all of their carefully crafted lives, with sensors and products and places that seemed to be able to predict what they wanted before they even asked for it, were cut off.

It appears to have begun at 1:32PM Eastern time. Details aren’t known who started it or how many people were involved willingly in the collapse and how many machines participated in what historians have called the Internet of Bricked Things and what we now know simply as the day the World was Bricked. But what is known is that by 6:05PM the promise of the so-called Internet of Things lay in ruin. Most of that connected stuff couldn’t get a connection and had been permanently turned into inert chunks of material only useful and as smart as the common construction materials at the time known as bricks. Ten years later we were still digging out.

What is known is that a technique called “Man in the Middle” from the cyber security world was definitely involved. It turns out as more and more systems abstracted away the hard parts of the collection of things — so that amateurs could play — the tools tried to make more decisions on their own (a process called Machine Learning). Unfortunately things became far more naked to attack. The “Man in the Middle” approach allowed for a product or products to spoof the systems and send false signals up the chain, polluting the same tools that had allowed so many to create so much. The cascade was quick and deadly, as more and more systems believed the false claims they began to make faulty decisions and assert ever more preposterous actions for their humans to take. Just like the famous “flash crash” that swept through Wall Street in 2010, the battle happened largely among algorithms fighting for dominance on the social network. Unlike the “flash crash,” this time those algorithms controlled most physical things and places in the world.


Core77

This Pet Dentist From Alaska Conquered The Internet With His Indescribably Cute Dogs

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Dentists can be quite scary to most people, though we can never pinpoint the reason why. Maybe it’s because the sound of the drill or the fact that we’re in such a prone position as they work in our mouths and we never know what they’re going to discover.

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But one man tries to sway those fears that dentists are people too and are still capable of fun.

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One Alaskan dentist named Timothy, decided to take to his Instagram account and start showing what his personal life is like, and that includes a lot of pictures of puppies.

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It’s obvious that he not only cares for his dogs, but that he absolutely adores them.

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Every photo is a shot of happiness, filled with smiles, fun, and puppies playing in the snow.

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How he gets many of these dogs to be so patient, evident by one dog carefully balancing a snowman on his head, is beyond us.

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Some might say it’s due to his practice and having to be patient with his younger patients, but no matter his secret, there’s no way anyone could be scared of Timothy, who is also known as “Tim the Tooth Ninja.”

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Those dogs are lucky enough to have all of that land to play on, too, as well as those inches of snow to romp around in.

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Clearly, they don’t mind Timothy’s… unique choice of dress, or the fact that he got them to join in too.

h/t: heroviral, brightside

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Design You Trust. Design, Culture & Society.

The Best Perfectly Timed Photos From Before It Was An Internet Meme

Perfectly timed photos from before the age of digital photography and smartphone cameras are even more impressive. Some of the best photographers of the time captured iconic moments on film.

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This picture, identified as a woman sneezing and taken in 1900, is often called the original perfectly timed photo. It’s more likely that the picture is staged, however, and the woman is an actress advertising her skills. Film exposures were too long to catch something as fleeting as a sneeze—especially with no blurring. (via Imgur)

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Race car driver Hans Herrmann is thrown clear of his BRM F1 car during the 1959 German Grand Prix after the brakes failed. He survived and raced professionally until 1969. (via Imgur)

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René Maltête was a French photographer who published his first book in 1960. He looked for humor in everyday situations. (Photo: René Maltête)

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Maltête captured perfectly timed photos throughout his career, before the internet and before it became a thing. (Photo: René Maltête)

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No, this baby isn’t sitting on telephone wires. He’s just getting tossed into the air by his father, circa 1969, and really enjoying it. (Photo: mricon/Flickr)

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In the early days of football, when helmets were nothing more than padded leather, the easiest way to test them out was to run headlong into the sides of houses. (via Imgur)

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The most iconic perfectly timed photo is from the French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson, who captured the exact moment a man leaped into a gigantic puddle from a ladder. Cartier-Bresson shot this image in 1932, three years after receiving his first camera. He went on to pioneer street photography and the candid form of picture-taking. (Photo: Henri Cartier-Bresson)

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Robert Frank was a well-known mid-century photographer born in Switzerland who photographed street scenes across Europe. In London in 1951 he captured this dog leaping between buildings. (Photo: Robert Frank/National Gallery of Art)

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Garry Winogrand was a contemporary of Robert Frank’s, primarily shooting photographs in New York City. He is known as one of the definitive New York photographers. In this image, commonly called “Flip,” a man soars high in the air, cigarette still clenched between his lips. (Photo: Garry Winogrand)

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When a kangaroo fights, it grabs its foe with its forelegs so it can use its powerful hindlegs to kick, slash, and even disembowel its attacker. This woman found out the hard way that kangaroos are secretly vicious, and her camera went flying. (via Imgur)

Via Allday


Design You Trust. Design, Culture & Society.

CERN celebrates 20 years of a free, open web by restoring world’s first website

CERN celebrates 20 years of a free, open web by restoring world's first website

The web as we know it was famously invented by Tim Berners-Lee while working at CERN, but it wasn’t until a few years later — 1993 to be precise — that it’d truly be set free. On April 30 of that year, Berners-Lee’s then employer would make the technology behind the WWW available license free, bundling a basic browser and some key chunks of code into the deal. To commemorate the 20th anniversary of this event CERN has recreated the first ever website, complete with its original URL. The preservation doesn’t stop at copying over some old files, either, with CERN also looking to preserve the first servers used, restoring as much as possible to its original state. Beyond a little geeky nostalgia, the project hopes to safeguard the web’s earliest days, before it became the ubiquitous phenomenon it is now, so that future generations can enjoy (and scoff) at the web’s origins. Best of all, no drawn-out field trip is required to enjoy the spectacle, you can see it just as nature intended by heading to the source.

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Via: BBC

Source: The WWW Project, CERN, (2)

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CERN celebrates 20 years of a free, open web by restoring world’s first website

Nielsen preparing ‘Digital Program Ratings’ pilot program to track streaming viewers

Nielsen preparing 'Digital Program Ratings' pilot program to track streaming viewers

According to the Wall Street Journal, Nielsen’s TV ratings are about to get some company, with a system that covers internet watchers. A “Nielsen Digital Program Ratings” pilot program will debut with participation from NBC, Fox, ABC, Univision, Discovery and A&E, tracking the viewership of streaming video they post on their websites. AOL (parent company of Engadget) is also reported to be participating, as the networks compare the data to their internal statistics before the ratings system gets a wider rollout. Of course, even the system they’re testing will only jump so far into the future — while it will track viewing on computers, it’s still leaving out phones and tablets. Networks want to track anywhere content is viewed — one of the issues we’ve been told they have with tech like Aereo or TWC TV — to sell ads against it, we’ll wait for more details to see if they’ll have any success extending the current model to other types of screens.

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Source: Wall Street Journal

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Nielsen preparing ‘Digital Program Ratings’ pilot program to track streaming viewers

YouTube now offers more MLB highlights and full archived games

YouTube now offers more MLB highlights and full archived games

YouTube just keeps adding quality content. Last week it was comedy, and this week it’s bulking up on its sporting chops with a Major League Baseball partnership. Always among the most tech-savvy of major sports leagues, MLB has beefed up the offerings on its YouTube channel to include highlights from every game of 2013 (two days after they’ve occurred), and a vast archive of full games from as far back as 1952. Plus, should you reside outside the US, Canada, South Korea, Taiwan and Japan, you’ll get to watch two live games every day during the regular season for free. So, seamheads, head on over to the MLB.com YouTube channel — your digital field of dreams awaits.

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Source: YouTube (Google+), MLB.com (YouTube)

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YouTube now offers more MLB highlights and full archived games

Vermont Telephone Company’s gigabit internet service is live, half the price of Google Fiber

http://www.engadget.com/2013/04/28/vermount-telephone-companys-gigabit-internet/

Remember how Google Fiber‘s recent announcement for planned service in Austin by 2014 spurred immediate competition from AT&T? It’s safe to say telcos in other areas have taken note about the gigabit speeds and roughly $70 montly pricing, too. According to a Wall Street Journal Digits blog post, Vermont Telephone Company is now offering gigabit-speed service to some of its customers for the crazy low stand-alone price of $35 bucks a month. To keep things in perspective, WSJ notes that roughly 600 folks are subscribed (out of VTel’s total base of about 17.5K) and that the company is essentially going to be analyzing whether the current pricing will remain for the long-term. With Google Fiber to continuing to expand, it’s certainly promising to see how superspeed internet is trickling across the US — and how easy it’s been looking on the wallet.

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Via: The Wall Street Journal Digits

Source: VTel

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Vermont Telephone Company’s gigabit internet service is live, half the price of Google Fiber

LG Cloud rolling out in over 40 more countries by late May

LG Cloud rolling out in over 40 more countries by late May

Although LG jumped into the deep end of the online services pool when it launched LG Cloud last year, it didn’t have much to brag about when access was limited to South Korea, Russia and the US. The company is about to broaden its horizons considerably — it now plans to deploy LG Cloud to more than 40 additional countries before the end of May. While the electronics giant hasn’t outlined its plans on a nation-by-nation basis, it’s planning a truly worldwide expansion that should include Asia, Europe and Latin America. If your Optimus G Pro and brand new TV aren’t already syncing their media in perfect harmony, there’s a good chance that they will within a month’s time.

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LG Cloud rolling out in over 40 more countries by late May

Wavii confirms acquisition by Google, starts to wind down its own service

Wavii confirms acquisition by Google, starts to wind down its own service

There was an odd level of uncertainty surrounding Google’s reported buyout of Wavii: where Google usually mentions acquisitions in short order, mum’s been the word for much of the past week. Thankfully, we won’t be left hanging over the weekend — Wavii has stepped forward to confirm the deal is happening. Neither side has discussed the terms involved, but Wavii chief Adrian Aoun made it clear the acquisition is for the technology first and foremost. Wavii’s info summarization service will be shutting down, while the company’s expertise in natural language processing should find its way into future Google projects. It’s sad to see another independent service absorbed by a much larger company, but we’re at least likely to see the fruits of Wavii’s labor through some very public channels.

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Via: TechCrunch

Source: Wavii

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Wavii confirms acquisition by Google, starts to wind down its own service

Pinterest revives classic features, revamps notifications and search

Pinterest overauls notifications and search, revives a load of classic features

When Pinterest unveiled its big redesign last month, it took the sort of gamble on feature trade-offs that we’ve seen before: some big leaps forward at the expense of a few leaps back. Much to the relief of many, the company is already doing what it can to restore what was lost while still forging ahead. Veteran users can once again see pins they’ve just posted, mention friends and find would-be contacts on Facebook on Twitter. As for the less nostalgic among us? The progress isn’t as dramatic, but it’s there: Pinterest has reworked notifications to show their history, and searches now include as-you-type keyword suggestions. More updates are on the way, including notifications for new pins, so we wouldn’t worry that Pinterest is spending most of its time mending broken fences.

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Source: Pinterest Blog

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Pinterest revives classic features, revamps notifications and search

Google Transparency Report shows censorship spike, details takedown requests

Google Transparency Report shows censorship spike, details takedown requests

Governments are getting nosier than ever, at least if you ask Google. The search firm has already noticed rapidly mounting censorship in recent months, but its latest half-year Transparency Report has revealed a 26 percent surge in takedown requests toward the end of 2012 — at 2,285 total, more than twice as many as in 2009. Much of the jump can be attributed to Brazil, whose municipal election triggered a rush of anti-defamation requests from candidates, as well as a Russian blacklisting law that allows for trial-free website takedowns.

Whether or not the heat dies down in 2013, we’ll have a better sense of just what happens when a YouTube request comes down the pipe. From now on, Google will say whether government-based demands to remove videos were based on YouTube’s Community Guidelines or were directly linked to regional laws. Google isn’t any more inclined to comply with such requests — it argues those Brazilian clips are free speech, for example — but we’ll have a better sense of just how easy it is for the company to say no.

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Via: Google Official Blog

Source: Google Transparency Report

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Google Transparency Report shows censorship spike, details takedown requests

Google Drive now lets collaborators add friends, start chats with fewer clicks

Google Drive now lets collaborators add friends, start chats with one click

When you’re sharing a file in Google Drive, your time should be spent collaborating, not arranging conversations. Right? Google agrees strongly enough to have just finished tweaking Drive’s web interface for better teamwork. Users actively working on the project now show as mouse-over icons, with their Google+ relationship front and center — if they’re not friends and you want them to be, you can change that almost immediately. It’s even faster to start group chats, as a new dedicated button will launch a chatroom for everyone who’s currently looking at the project. Google expects the speedier Drive socialization to reach us within a day or two, and it’s planning to bolster the update with wider file support sometime in the near future.

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Source: Google Drive Blog

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Google Drive now lets collaborators add friends, start chats with fewer clicks

Translation Platform Gengo Raises $12M Funding Round Led By Intel Capital

gengo_logo

Gengo, an increasingly popular online translation service that uses a network of more than 7,500 pre-screened and rated translators to provide high-quality translations in 33 languages, announced that it has raised a $12 million funding round. The round was led by Intel Capital, with participation from Iris Capital, Infocomm, NTT-IP and Saudi Telecom Ventures, as well as returning investor Atomico. The service previously raised a total of $6.8 million, including a $5.25 million series A round led by Atomico and Dave McClure’s 500 Startups. McClure is also a Gengo board member.

The fact that a number of telecom companies are part of this round, Gengo’s CEO and founder Robert Laing told me in an email earlier today, ”shows how telecoms companies ‘get’ the global opportunity of Gengo.”

“The Gengo team is excited about working with investors from Asia, the USA, Europe, and the Middle East, led by Intel Capital, because of their global experience and track record helping entrepreneurs,” Laing writes in today’s announcement.

Added Matthew Romaine, CTO and co-founder of Gengo: “There’s a significant technology component to human translation at scale, so it’s great to work with a firm with the pedigree of Intel Capital.”

Currently, Japan and the U.S. account for about 40 percent of Gengo’s revenue each. The company currently has a staff of 30 in its Tokyo office and nine employees in San Mateo.

According to Laing, the company has been growing rapidly. Gengo’s translators have already translated more texts in 2013 than they did during 2012. Part of this growth, of course, is due to the recent partnership with Google’s YouTube, which has now made Gengo one of its two integrated paid translation services, as well as a recent partnership with 3Play Media.

Besides video, Laing says, Gengo is also seeing a huge volume of translations from travel and e-commerce sites, including from a number of “leading e-commerce, online travel, and community portals” that are currently powered by its translation platform.

The Gengo team plans to use this new round of funding to accelerate its global expansion and improve both its translation platform and increase the speed of the translation process.

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Translation Platform Gengo Raises $12M Funding Round Led By Intel Capital