Johannes writes, "'Die Gstettensaga: The Rise of Echsenfriedl' -- our award-winning feature-length post-apocalyptic agitprop nerd comedy extravaganza -- is finally online on Vimeo! Free (as in lunch)! Enjoy!" Read the rest
Google's lawyers fought strenuously against the DoJ's demands for access to the Gmail account of Jacob Appelbaum, a journalist, activist and volunteer with the Wikileaks project; they fought even harder against the accompanying gag order, arguing that Appelbaum had the right to know what was going on and have a lawyer argue his case. Read the rest
After years of missteps, blunders and disasters in which Youtube users have been censored through spurious copyright claims or had their accounts deleted altogether, Google has announced an amazing, user-friendly new initiative though which it will fund the legal defense of Youtube creators who are censored by bad-faith copyright infringement claims. Read the rest
This week's XKCD has a hell of an Easter Egg, and it's not even in the tooltip. Read the rest
Google bans ads by predatory lenders who promise foreclosure prevention and high-rate short-term loans, but they do allow payday loan ads; when you search for "need rent money fast," the predatory lenders target you with payday loan ads that collect your information and turn it into a lead for a high-pressure sales-call from one of Google's shitlisted usurers. Read the rest
In September, Google caught Symantec issuing a fake google.com cryptographic certificate that could have been used to seamlessly intercept encrypted Google.com traffic. Symantec is one of the participants in Certificate Transparency, through which all new certificates issued and seen in the wild are logged to append-only, cryptographically provable logs, which create irrefutable audit trails for any bogus certs issued/discovered. Read the rest
As part of the launch of Youtube Red, the company's new porny-sounding ad-free pay TV service, top creators are being told that they must allow their work into the paywalled/ad free zone, or be excluded from Youtube altogether. Noncommercial Youtube creators get a choice (for now). Apparently, the punishment for making Youtube into a success is losing the right to choose how to make money off your stuff. Read the rest
Dan Gillmor has been playing with Google's new Nexus phones, the humungous 6P phablet and the smaller 5X, and he's written a shrewd and thorough review of what these phones do -- and more importantly, what they mean. Read the rest
The newly released bugs are part of the Stagefright family of vulnerabilities, disclosed by Zimperium Zlabs. Read the rest
Your browser trusts SSL certificates from hundreds of "Certificate Authorities," each of which is supposed to exercise the utmost caution before issuing them -- a rogue cert would allow a criminal or a government to act as a man-in-the-middle between you and your bank, email provider, or employer, undetectably intercepting communications that you believed to be secure. Read the rest
The new logo, announced yesterday, is undoubtedly more pleasant and contemporary than the old one. Margaret Rhodes writes that the company wants you to think that it is your go-everywhere friend.
Google needs to be able to transform its brand at will, because its canon of products is expanding rapidly. It’s not just that users now engage with the company on a “constellation of devices,” as the authors of the logo announcement page put it. As we saw at the I/O developer conference, Google is pushing to seamlessly guide users from one product to the next, with things like Google Now on Tap and voice search as the connective tissue that will bring it all together. For that to work, Google needs a crisp visual system. The new design helps, Clinton says, because the typeface is based largely on circles.
Glenn Fleishman writes that these simple scalable logos are simply bland.
At first glance, it seemed exceedingly bland to me; the longer I look at it and a new font that's related, the more I think they made a series of good choices. It's still bland, but it's a well-thought-out bland that makes sense for their company.