Tag Archives: Google

Mashable Weekend Recap: 65 Stories You Might Have Missed


The weekend started off with a bang, thanks to the dazzling opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games. That was spectacular enough to get everyone super-ready for the athletic competition involving our entire planet.

There were plenty of stories about the Olympics, and at the same time, your intrepid Mashable team discovered so much more — happenings in the digital world, tech innovations that felt like they were from a future world, and GIFs, comics and weekend fun that seemed to be from another world entirely.

Best of all, we’ve gathered all those stories here for you, in one big easy-to-peruse package. So take a look at the latest Weekend Recap, where you can catch up with the entire weekend of delightful news and views, right here:

Editor’s Picks

James Bond and the Queen Parachute Into the Olympics [VIDEO]

Please, NBC and IOC, Learn How to Share the Olympics

13 Surprising OS X Mountain Lion Facts [SUNDAY COMICS]

Top 10 Twitter Pics of the Week

Mountain Lion Vs. Windows 8: Which One Is Better?

Best Pics Yet: This Could Be the Real iPhone 5

How to Watch the 2012 Summer Olympics Online

Spoilers: Angry Olympics Fans Tweet Their Protests, NBC Responds

Top 10 Tech This Week [PICS]

News & Opinion

Marissa Mayer Brings Free Food to Yahoo, Eyes Acquisitions [REPORT]

MTV’s ‘Teen Wolf’ Facebook Game Is Feast for Fans in First 5 Weeks

Where to Get Back-to-School Deals on Tablets, Computers

How Dictation Tools Can Help Speed Up Your Workflow [INFOGRAPHIC]

Russian Cargo Spacecraft Docks With Space Station on 2nd Try

Olympic Check-Ins: Hot Foursquare Deals and Badges for London 2012

Record-Setting Electric Plane Flight Almost Didn’t Make It [VIDEO]

Mysterious Billionaire Commissions World’s Largest Yacht [VIDEO]

Twitter Jokester’s ‘Bomb Threat’ Charges Dropped [VIDEO]

Olympic Popularity: Starcount Reveals Which Olympic Athletes Are Trending

Amazon Sales Tax — What it Means for You

Down to the Millisecond: All About Olympics Timing

Trioh! The Flashlight You Can See When The Power Goes Out

On Reddit, Rapists Say They’re Sorry

Latest Apple Ads Take a Turn for the Worse

Why the London 2012 Olympics Is the First Real-Time Games

The 9 Most Important Tablet Mysteries of 2012

Device Turns Eye Movement Into Handwriting

Apple Considered Investing in Twitter [REPORT]

Hidden Genius Project Provides Tech Mentorship for Young Black Men

What Higher Education Will Look Like in 2020 [STUDY]

Why Do We Keep Going Back to Mars?

This Is What the Olympians From 100 Years Ago Looked Like

Shedding Light on Mitt Romney’s Unexplained Twitter Surge

New Leaked Pics May Hint at iPhone 5 Design

Chick-fil-A PR Chief Dies as Company Battles Controversy

Hacking the Olympics Opening Ceremony

Romney Advisor Tweets ‘Follow Friday’ List of Potential VPs

Facebook’s Not the Only One Struggling With Mobile Advertising

Weekend Leisure

This Cute, Cubed Bamboo Speaker Packs Crazy Sound [VIDEO]

9 Nifty Laptop Feet to Keep Your PC Running Cool

Kickstarter Project Is a ‘Smartwatch’ for Your Smartphone

‘Fund Me Maybe’ Is Tech World’s Parody of ‘Call Me Maybe’ [VIDEO]

10 Stylish Onesies for Baby Geeks

12 Pictures of Animals Being Forced to Marry

It’s Official: This Is the Cutest Picture on the Internet

Twitter Doghouse Lets You Temporarily Dump Annoying Tweeps

Top 10 GIFs of the Week

Boys Will Be Boys In This ‘Girls’ Parody [VIDEO]

10 Brits Snubbed from the Olympic Opening Ceremony

You Have Upset The Tetris God [VIDEO]

Sneak Peek: Justin Bieber Teases ‘As Long As You Love Me’ Video

If ‘A Space Odyssey’ Were Remade as a Hollywood Blockbuster

Forget Traditional Tours; Vayable Helps You Discover New Ways to Travel

Listen to Talk Radio on Your iPhone? You’re Probably a Liberal

You’ll Grin and Bear it With This Wild Live Video Stream

Mr. Bean Gets Carried Away During Olympics Appearance

Get a Bird’s-Eye View of 25 Olympic Stadiums

Top 6 Comments on Mashable This Week

Helpful Resources

Everything You Need to Know About Foursquare’s New Merchant Tools

How to Structure Your Daily Job Search to Help Land Your Next Job

50 Digital Media Resources You May Have Missed

6 Key Software Updates You Should Be Doing

The Beginner’s Guide to Socialcam

4 Reasons Why Recruiters Should Stop Accepting Traditional Resumes

The Anatomy of a Killer Content Marketing Strategy

Read more: http://mashable.com/2012/07/30/weekend-recap-64/

10 Stylish Cases for Your Nexus 7 Tablet


Google Introduces Project Wing

Google Introduces Project Wing

The Internet and tech world exploded in glee when Amazon introduced their drone delivery program, Amazon Prime Air. Though the program is years from reality, it demonstrates what will soon be commonplace. Now, the world’s most famous tech company, Google, is joining the drone game. 

Google‘s semi-secret invention center Google X has just debuted Project Wing, a similar drone delivery program. Soon, the sky will be full of buzzing drones delivering pizzas to headphones. 


Read more: http://www.viralviralvideos.com/2014/08/28/google-introduces-project-wing/

Google Lunar X Prize Robot Built to Find Lunar Water


The search for water ice on the moon could be led someday by a robot armed with a 4-foot drill. With the first prototype of the lunar rover, called Polaris, comes the prospect of eventually extracting resources from the moon, asteroids or other planets through space mining.

Polaris is the robot of choice for Astrobotic Technology, one of many private teams competing for the $30 million Google Lunar X Prize for landing robotic explorers on the moon. But Astrobotic also wants to build a lasting business out of its lunar exploration efforts by testing the technologies needed for space mining.

“This rover is a first step toward using off-Earth resources to further human exploration of our solar system,” said John Thornton, president of the Pittsburgh-based  robotics company, which unveiled the prototype Oct. 8.

Polaris is the size of a golf cart and tall enough to wield a 4-foot drill. It can move a foot per second on its 2-foot-wide wheels and carry 150 pounds (70 kilograms) of drilling equipment and science instruments. Between its heavy drill and batteries and its lightweight wheels and chassis, the robot weighs about 330 pounds (150 kilograms).

Polaris will need to withstand frigid temperatures as low as minus 280 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 173 Celsius).

The lunar rover’s power comes from solar panels designed to point toward the sun as it peeks just above the moon’s south pole.

A lack of GPS on the moon required a workaround. Astrobotic hit upon the clever idea of having the rover match whatever it sees on the surface with pictures of satellite images taken by NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.

If Polaris reaches the moon, it could be perhaps the first of many robots that scout sites for space mining operations. NASA has already begun talking with about putting its own ice-prospecting instruments on the private rover — one of nine contracts worth $3.6 million that the U.S. space agency has awarded to Astrobotic.

This article originally published at TechNewsDaily

Read more: http://mashable.com/2012/10/11/google-lunar-x-prize-robot/

Three 16 Year Old Girls Win Top Prize At Google Science Fair For Agricultural Research

The winners of the 2014 Google Science Fair have been announced! This is a prestigious international science fair, featuring the work of students ages 13 to 18. Though “science fair” generally makes people think of making a battery with a potato or growing cultures to find the dirtiest surface of the school, the Google Science Fair attracts teens who are working on some truly amazing projects.

The Grand Prize went to a team of three 16-year-old girls from Ireland: Ciara Judge, Émer Hickey, and Sophie Healy-Thow. Their project, “Combating The Global Food Crisis: Diazotroph Bacteria As A Cereal Crop Growth Promoter,” explored different bacterial strains that could shorten the germination time of cereal crops like oats and barley. Growing food is becoming monumentally important, as climate change threatens food crops, and the increasing global population is becoming incredibly demanding.

For winning the prize, the girls will spend 10 days in the Galapagos Islands from National Geographic Expeditions, receive a $50,000 scholarship, a behind-the-scenes tour of Virgin Galactic Spaceport, a prize pack from LEGO, and one of three experiences offered by LEGO, NatGeo, and Google. The winner’s school will receive $10,000 for computers or lab equipment as well as one year access to Scientific American.

Mihir Garimella, a 14-year-old from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, won the 13 to 14 age group with “Flybot: Mimicking Fruit Fly Response Patterns For Threat Evasion.” He replicated the visual system of fruit flies, which allows them to deftly avoid obstacles with fighter jet-like maneuverability. This technology could help develop drones that can be used to better avoid obstacles in search and rescue missions.

Hayley Todesco, a 17-year-old from Alberta, Canada, took the top prize in the 17 to 18 age group for “Waste To Water: Biodegrading Naphthenic Acids Using Novel Sand Bioreactors.” This system uses sand to filter out Naphthenic acid, which is a byproduct generated from processing oil sands and held in tailing ponds. This toxin is not readily biodegradable, and Hayley’s sand filter is able to reduce its presence by 90%. Her system could clean every tailing pond in the world 14 times faster than the method currently in use. This project also won the Local Prize, as it addresses a problem within her community. She was given $1000 in funding to develop and implement her idea.

For taking the top prize within their respective age groups, Mihir and Hayley will each receive a $25,000 scholarship, a prize pack from LEGO, and one of three experiences offered by LEGO, NatGeo, and Google. Their respective schools will also get a year of access to Scientific American.

[All images via Google Science Fair]


Read more: http://www.iflscience.com/technology/google-science-fair-winners-announced

Google Earth Adds Timelapse Videos of Earth Taken From Over 40 Years


Google announced on Monday it is celebrating the 40-year anniversary of NASA’s Landsat satellites that have been continuously circling the Earth and collecting data about its surface by making its images available on Google Earth.

Images of the Earth taken by Landsat satellites, which have been orbiting the globe every 16 days since July 1972, are now available in the form of timelapse videos. Google said it has been working with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and Carnegie Mellon University to bring the image collection online.

“With them you can travel through time, from 1999-2011, to see the transformation of our planet — whether it’s deforestation in the Amazon, urban growth in Las Vegas or the difference in snow coverage between the seasons,” Google wrote in a post on its blog.

It is the longest-running record of the Earth’s landscape that has ever been recorded. The satellites go from pole to pole, capturing every inch of its surface and collecting data, before it repeats the same process. It allows scientists to monitor how the Earth changes over time and keep track of its health.

The company believes it may be the largest video frames ever created on the web: “If you could see the entire video at full resolution, a single frame would be 1.78 terapixels which is 18 football fields’ worth of computer screens laid side-by-side,” it added.

Although the USGS opened access to the Landsat archive for free in 2008, the Google Earth engine is now making it possible for the data to be easily accessed.

Google also launched a YouTube that details the Landsat program and how Google Earth was used to archive the photos. Check out the clip above.

Read more: http://mashable.com/2012/07/23/google-earth-landsat-satellite-images/

Etsy Bets Big on Google Shopping Ahead of Relaunch


Beginning next week, businesses that want their products to appear at the top of Google search results will have to pay for it. Etsy, an online marketplace for handmade goods, will be among them.

The Brooklyn-based startup hosts shops for more than 800,000 sellers and has generated $500 million in sales so far this year. It’s investing more than $250,000 in Google Product Listing Ads through the end of 2012 “to make sure sellers aren’t negatively affected [by Google’s changes] during the holiday season,” a spokesperson for Etsy wrote in an e-mail to Mashable. All Etsy sellers with at least one active listing will be indexed — about 15 million items in all — at no additional cost to them. UPDATE: Only the listings of U.S. sellers will be indexed. Etsy could not provide an exact number.

In late May, Google announced that it would be rebranding Product Search as Google Shopping, and that organic Product Search results would be replaced by paid listings come Oct. 1 in the U.S., and in Europe and Asia next year. Results will still be ranked largely by relevance, “with bidding as an additional factor,” a Google spokesperson told Mashable. Natural results will still appear below sponsored results.

Here’s what Product Search looked prior to May (via Google):

Here’s what it looks like today (note the “Sponsored” tag):

And here’s how Google Shopping will look come Oct. 1 (via Google):

Why is Google making the change? In a blog post, Sameer Samat, VP of product management at Google Shopping, said the company believes that if merchants are paying to have their products appear, they’re more likely to keep their product information accurate and up to date.

Google is no doubt hoping that if it improves the quality of its product search results, shoppers will make Google — rather than Amazon — their first stop for online shopping. In a Forrester survey of 4,000 U.S. shoppers released in July, more than twice as many said they began researching their last online purchases at Amazon (30%) versus Google (13%).

Not all retailers are happy about the changes, of course — they are now being charged for a service they once enjoyed for free. The change may seem especially painful for small business owners, but Google says merchants can pay for listings based on clicks or on purchases made on-site, which does even the playing field.

Frank Harris, product manager for search and advertising at Etsy, says he’s been studying the traffic from Google Product Searches since May, and found that it was effective for reaching shoppers who weren’t previously familiar with Etsy. He isn’t sure if the investment will simply maintain Etsy’s current rankings or improve them, but he did say that “historically we were able to syndicate only a fraction of the marketplace, and now we’re working closely with Google to get the entire marketplace into product search.”

Shop owners will be able to track how their Google listings are performing in terms of click-throughs through an analytics dashboard (see above). If the ads perform well, it’s possible that Etsy could begin charging sellers for them later. Last year, the company introduced an ad product for its own site search, allowing sellers to purchase placements in highlighted sections on search results pages. Harris says Etsy “hasn’t decided on anything past spending a quarter of a million dollars for the end fo the year,” but said the company “will talk to the community in early 2013 about next steps.”

Google Is Testing Solar-Powered Drones To Supply 5G Internet From The Air

Google has reportedly been testing flying drones that could be capable of delivering high-speed Internet to the ground. The secretive Project SkyBender would see the solar-powered vehicles supply a 5G-equivalent connection for consumers.

The claims all stem from a report by The Guardian, which found that Google was testing solar-powered drones at Spaceport America in New Mexico. This spaceport is the one being used by Virgin Galactic for its tourism business.

Google has taken up residence at the spaceport, where it has been using its own control center to monitor an optionally piloted aircraft, a Centaur, which is a vehicle that can operate both with and without a human on board.

The aircraft is using millimeter-wave technology to communicate, which has been touted as a way to deliver high-speed Internet, with speeds of several gigabits a second possible. This is 40 times faster than the technology used in 4G today. The only issue with millimeter-wave is that is fades quickly, something Google has been aiming to solve with these tests.

Google has its sights set on thousands of high-altitude autonomous drones being used to beam Internet to the ground. Indeed, alongside the Centaur aircraft the tech company has been flying a solar-powered drone called Solara 50, which could one day form the cornerstone of this service.

Google has permission to continue tests until July, and this isnt the only ambitious Internet-delivery project it has on the go. It is also working on Project Loon, a series of high-altitude balloons that can beam a connection to the ground.

Both are in their very early stages at the moment, though, soof coursethere are no details on when, or if, either will become commercially available. But the developments will be interesting to keep an eye on, at any rate.

And this isnt the only news coming out of Spaceport America. On February 19, Virgin Galactic are planning to unveil their new SpaceShipTwo vehicle that will take paying customers into space in the next few years, following the tragic disaster back in November 2014that saw co-pilot Michael Alsburylose his life.

Read more: http://www.iflscience.com/technology/google-testing-solar-powered-drones-supply-5g-internet-air

Neil Patrick Harris Teases Emmys Dance Number in Google+ Hangout


LOS ANGELES — Emmys host Neil Patrick Harris is touting Sunday’s big dance number involving nominees from the Outstanding Choreography category.

In a Google+ Hangout, the How I Met Your Mother star previewed the upcoming performance, discussed Emmy chances for Netflix show House of Cards and revealed he’s only episodes deep into Breaking Bad‘s first season.

“You’ll see me dance — let me tell you something, if there’s one thing that I love to do, it’s to break out into dance,” said Harris, who also danced and sang as host of the 2009 Emmys.

Harris’ “crazy, cool” dance will coincide with the first time the Outstanding Choreography winner will be announced at the Primetime Emmys. Previously, the category was part of the Creative Arts portion of the Emmys.

Fittingly, the nominated choreographers will be part of the dance; they include Derek Hough and Allison Holker (both for Dancing With The Stars) and Warren Carlyle (Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel), as well as Sonya Tayeh, Travis Wall, Napoleon Dumo, Tabitha Dumo and Mandy Jo Moore (all for So You Think You Can Dance).

Watch Harris’ Google+ Hangout with Entertainment Weekly‘s Laura Hertzfeld, below. In addition to Emmys chatter, he talks about his desire to play the Riddler in any future Batman movie, how he calms his nerves, his future on Broadway (he’ll be taping his “wiener” to his leg) and also picks his favorite How I Met Your Mother episodes (hint: one involves Price Is Right host Bob Barker).

Harris has won four Emmys — one for his guest-starring role on Glee, and three for his performances as Tony Awards host in 2009, 2011 and 2012. He has also been nominated for his role as Barney Stinson on CBS’s How I Met Your Mother. Harris previously hosted the Primetime Creative Arts Emmys in 2008, the 61st Primetime Emmy Awards in 2009, and the 63rd, 65th, 66th and 67th Tony Awards.

The 65th Primetime Emmys will air on Sept. 22 at 5 p.m. PT on CBS.

On Sunday, be sure to follow Mashable’s entertainment editor Brian Anthony Hernandez, who will be providing live coverage on Twitter (@BAHjournalist) and Instagram (BAHjournalist) from the Emmys red carpet and inside Nokia Theatre during the awards ceremony.

Cadillac’s Hands-Free Car Idea Isn’t Quite ‘Look Ma, No Hands’


Image: Scott Olson/Getty

General Motors has lapped competitors by announcing a hands-free Cadillac for the 2017 model year, but a self-driving robot car is still a ways off.

Eager to change the course of conversation from the 29 million-plus recalls it announced this year, GM CEO Mary Barra touted Super Cruise, a feature that will be available in an unnamed Cadillac 2017 model on Sunday.

“With Super Cruise, when there’s a congestion alert on roads like California’s Santa Monica Freeway, you can let the car take over and drive hands-free and feet-free through the worst stop-and-go traffic around,” Barra said in Detroit on Sunday. “And if the mood strikes you on the high-speed road from Barstow, California, to Las Vegas, you can take a break from the wheel and pedals and let the car do the work.”

Foot-free driving, of course, isn’t all that new. Even the oldest versions of cruise control were designed for such a purpose. Hands-free driving, though, is a different story.

“We don’t really view it as driverless, like ‘Look ma, no hands’ or ‘I’m gonna go in the back seat & have a sandwich,'” said Cadillac rep David Caldwell.

While a sandwich break might be out of the question, the demo video below for Super Cruise shows you can sit in the driver’s seat and drive without touching the wheel:

It’s a step forward for auto technology, albeit not a huge one. Adaptive cruise control, which uses sensors to automatically adjust your car’s speed and keep a safe distance from the car in front of you, has existed for a decade. The 2014 Mercedes S Class also lets drivers experience hands-free driving in certain situations, like heavy traffic. Carlos Ghosn, chief executive of Nissan, has also said by the end of 2016, some Nissan models will have a “traffic jam pilot” to help drivers zone out when driving on congested roadways. Tesla is also planning to release a car that runs on “auto pilot” by 2016.

Thilo Koslowski, an analyst with Gartner, said he has tried Mercedes’ system and had two concerns. He couldn’t completely disengage his mind in traffic and, if drivers did begin to zone out regularly, they might forget how to react in dangerous situations. Mercedes’ technology addresses these issues by requiring drivers to touch the wheel every 10 seconds. Super Cruise, on the other hand, can be a stress reliever if it works as advertised, Koslowski said.

“It’s a big deal and I’m positively surprised by this,” Koslowski said of Super Cruise. He added that GM’s announcement is still rather vague at this point.

Koslowski says there are three tiers of intelligent auto technology — automated cars, autonomous cars and self-driving vehicles. Automated cars can perform some self-driving functions on their own, but still require a driver; autonomous cars can fully drive on their own yet still need a driver on hand to oversee use; self-driving cars like Google’s are essentially drones. Cadillac’s Super Cruise falls somewhere between automated and autonomous, he says. Koslowski expects that three major companies — not necessarily car companies — will announce concrete plans for autonomous vehicles in 2016, and that autonomous vehicles will be commonplace by 2025 or 2035. The ubiquity of driverless cars will take longer.

A big question for GM is whether consumers will trust the company with such a technology. “They’re very clearly trying to reinforce their safety credentials,” said Roger Lanctot, associate director of Strategy Analytics’ automotive multimedia and communications service.

Lanctot said that GM’s safety image should be on par with Volvo’s because it has had OnStar for 17 years, “which was all about saving lives.” The recalls, which have been linked to 13 deaths, have made that claim a non-starter.

“It’s been a black eye.”

Read more: http://mashable.com/2014/09/08/cadillacs-hands-free/