Android co-founder Andy Rubin is leaving Google, robotics division now under new leadership

andyrubin

Android co-founder Andy Rubin is leaving Google, according to the Wall Street Journal. Rubin joined Google when the company bought Android and most recently headed up the new robotics division. That division will reportedly remain intact under the leadership of James Kuffner, who is currently a member of that team.

The change was confirmed by CEO Larry Page. The Wall Street Journal reports that Rubin is planning to launch an incubator for startups that focus on creating high-tech hardware.

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Amazon drunkenly posts Moto 360 Champagne Metal, Leather Cognac band

 

Amazon jumped the gun on the release of what appears to be two new Moto 360 products, both named after expensive booze. First, you have the Champagne (read: Gold) Moto 360 face and strap which will, according to the site, set you back $300.

No sir, I don’t like it.

On the other hand, the new Cognac strap ships at the same $249 price as current band/face combos and is definitely easy on the eyes. No word yet on standalone price.

Both are given a launch time of 1-2 months so maaaybe before Christmas? At time of writing, both were taken down by Amazon but not before someone gave them a 5 star rating. Screenshots below…

Amazon cache (1) (2) (3) via DROID LIFE
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Motorola officially ‘a Lenovo company’, Moto and Droid brands live on

moto

While Google confirmed the $2.9B sale of Motorola way back in January, it is only today that the last piece of paperwork was signed and the formerly American-owned Motorola officially became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Chinese electronics manufacturer Lenovo.

Announcing the completion of the acquisition on the Motorola blog, the company said that its headquarters would remain in Chicago, along with its offices in Silicon Valley …  Read more

MPAA institutes new “zero tolerance” policy towards wearables in movie theaters

cinema

Google Glass in movie theaters has long been a topic of debate, with a plethora UK cinemas banning the wearable and at least one U.S. chain doing the same. Today, however, the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) issued a statement announcing a new “zero tolerance” policy against wearables in the theatre. The statement says that all wearable devices must be powered off prior to the film beginning, no questions asked.

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Stripe hires long-serving Google executive Claire Johnson to manage business operations

Claire Hughes Johnson

Re/code reports on Tuesday that senior Google executive Claire Hughes Johnson has been hired by payments company Stripe to lead business operations at the San Francisco-based tech startup. According to the report, Johnson will make the transition from Google to Stripe while taking just one day off as she switches jobs. Read more

Seeking to focus on ‘big picture,’ Larry Page hands control of most Google products to Sundar Pichai

Sundar-Pichai

Google’s executive team has undergone a shakeup according to a new Re/code report. CEO Larry Page has apparently decided to hand control of many of Google’s products over to SVP of Android, Chrome, and Apps Sundar Pichai in order to take a step back and guide the ‘big picture’ of the company’s future.

Page has reportedly been concerned for some time that as Google ages it will become less and less innovative. The executive reorganization is designed to help him ensure that doesn’t happen. Pichai will take over what Re/code refers to as “core Google products,” except for YouTube, which will remain under Page’s control.

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Google’s DeepMind teams up with Oxford University to work on artificial intelligence projects

Dubai-Cop

Google announced today that it’s teamed up with Oxford University to collaborate on artificial intelligence related projects through its Google DeepMind team. The partnership will see researchers from Dark Blue Labs and other experts in various artificial intelligence technologies like natural language understanding and computer vision systems join Google’s DeepMind team: Read more

Lollipop will see big update to Gmail app, will handle non-Gmail accounts too

If you were wondering why Google hasn’t yet introduced an updated version of the Gmail app on Android to match its Material Design guidelines, the answer appears to be that it has something big in store. Gmail 5.0, which will be introduced as part of Android 5.0 Lollipop, will for the first time allow you to access all your email accounts within the same app, Gmail and non-Gmail alike …  Read more

Google’s latest moves to fight pirate sites “will visibly affect rankings of most notorious sites”

piracy

Google has updated its How Google Fights Piracy report with details of its latest moves to remove pirate sites from its search results. A key element is improved automated demotion of sites that have received high numbers of DMCA takedown notices.

In August 2012 we first announced that we would downrank sites for which we received a large number of valid DMCA notices. We’ve now refined the signal in ways we expect to visibly affect the rankings of some of the most notorious sites. This update will roll out globally starting [this week].

The “most notorious sites” are likely to include rapidgator.net, filestube.com and dilandau.eu, each of which has, notes Gizmodo, received at least 11 million individual takedown requests …  Read more

Motorola to drop affiliation with speaker/headphone maker Sol Republic

2014-10-17 15_06_35-TRACKS AIR by SOL REPUBLIC x Motorola

Sol Republic, makers of a wide variety of speakers and headphones, announced in August 2013—alongside the announcement of the Moto X—that it would be partnering with Motorola “to redefine the music experience,” and “change the way music fans experience and share music.” 9to5Google has learned, however, this partnership may not have worked out so well. According to people familiar with the partnership, Motorola will soon be dropping its affiliation and contract with Sol Republic.

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