Qualcomm exec named new head of Google Fiber

3eafe52The Wall Street Journal reports that Google’s ultrafast Internet service Fiber has a new leader running the show, and not just any new leader. Dennis Kish, a former executive at semiconductor company Qualcomm, is replacing Milo Medin to head Google Fiber going forward. The Journal reports that Medlin will remain “an adviser to the Google Fiber team,” but the Google vice president will begin work on other unspecified projects.

Kish was brought in for his operational expertise and will lead Google Fiber as the high-speed Internet and television service expands to new cities.

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Android Head Sundar Pichai interviewed about Android One launch in home country

Google releases updated Transparency Report, government demands for user info increase

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Google today announced it’s releasing an updated Transparency Report with the tenth release including updated numbers on government requests for user information during the first half of this year. Google also noted that the report includes updated data on demands under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) and through National Security Letters (NSLs). Google said today that apart from FISA and NSL requests, demands from government for user info continued to rise: Read more

Google almost created a company in 2003 to deter an employee’s balloon popping habits (video)

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Who wants to take a trip down memory lane? Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt does! The one time company CEO recently took to Google+ to do a little reminiscing. The year was 2003 and Google had been going strong for about five years. In its earlier days, the lighthearted tech company would welcome new employees to the fold by presenting them with a smiley helium balloon to float around their office space. A kind gesture, the balloon was also an easy way for seasoned employees to spot a “Noogler” (new Google employee).

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60 percent of apps fail basic privacy tests, finds international cross-governmental study

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A review of 1,211 apps carried out by a coalition of privacy officials across 19 countries found that 60 percent of them failed at least one basic privacy test, reports the WSJ.

The officials found that 60% of apps raised privacy concerns, based on three criteria: They did not disclose how they used personal information; they required that the user give up an excessive amount of personal data as a condition of downloading the app; and their privacy policies were rendered in type too small to be read on a phone’s screen …

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Google: ‘Less than 2%’ of login credentials leaked today were valid

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Earlier today, a huge number of Google account usernames and passwords were leaked onto the internet via a Russian Bitcoin security forum. This afternoon, Google has officially responded to concerns about the more than 4 million supposed login credentials, saying that none of the company’s systems were breached in order to obtain the data. Furthermore, the company says that it found that “less than 2% of the username and password combinations might have worked,” and that those who were affected have been notified. Read more

Google buys Lift Labs, maker of Parkinson’s Disease fighting smart spoon

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Google has acquired Lift Labs, a San Francisco company that has developed eating utensils that provide “proactive care” for people with essential tremor and Parkinson’s Disease. A Google spokesperson confirmed the deal with The New York Times, saying that the company will be rolled into the search giant’s Life Sciences unit, which is part of its super secret Google X lab.

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EU competition regulator requesting more from Google to end longstanding antitrust case

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Google has been battling allegations of burying rival companies in its web search results while promoting its own services, such as Maps and YouTube. The search giant was close to avoiding costly fines from the European Commission, but following negative feedback from its competitors, Google will now have to take additional measures to settle this multi-year investigation.

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Quick comparison: Samsung Galaxy Note 4 vs Galaxy Note 3 (Video)

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Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 was one of the major announcements during this year’s IFA show in Berlin. The new smartphone sports a fanatically durable design with a metal frame that gives it a very premium look. Overall, this is the phablet to buy in 2014, but how does it compare to its predecessor? Let’s find out in our Galaxy Note 4 vs Galaxy Note 3 spec comparison…

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Google shows off winning image-recognition system, likely to assist in autonomous car efforts

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Google has shown off its winning entry in an annual computer vision challenge whose entrants include both academic institutions and industry labs, and made its work available to other researchers.

In this year’s challenge, team GoogLeNet tasks, doubling the quality on both tasks over last year’s results. The team participated with an open submission, meaning that the exact details of its approach are shared with the wider computer vision community to foster collaboration and accelerate progress in the field …

Google cites its self-driving cars as one of the obvious applications of the technology. Read more