Google’s New “Guest Mode” for Smart Displays Completely Misses the Point

Google If you have a Nest Hub, Nest Hub Max, or any of the Nest smart speakers, the devices are likely full of your personal details. Nest Hubs helpfully show calendar appointments, recent searches, and more. But what if you don’t want houseguests to see all that juicy info? Google’s new guest mode, rolling out…Continue Reading

Inside Google’s firing of a top AI researcher, and the academic paper that started the battle: ‘People are seriously pissed’ (GOOGL)

On Wednesday, one of Google’s top AI ethics leaders announced she had been fired. Observers were confused by the decision, but inside Google, tensions between Timnit Gebru and senior management had been building for days. Gebru had co-authored a research paper that observed the biases of machine learning, but said she was ultimately fired over…Continue Reading

How Google’s new policy affects your free storage in Photos and Drive

Google has eliminated the “free” loophole that allows you to store unlimited high-resolution images in Google Photos. IDG Today’s Best Tech Deals Picked by PCWorld’s Editors Top Deals On Great Products Picked by Techconnect’s Editors On Wednesday, Google announced a major change to its policy on storing photos and other documents: All will start contributing…Continue Reading

Google’s AI lets users search language-agnostic knowledge bases in their native tongue

Entity linking fulfills a key role in grounded language understanding. Given a text mention of an entity (e.g., the word “helpful”), an algorithm identifies the entity’s corresponding entry in a knowledge base (such as a Wikipedia article). To extend its usefulness, researchers at Google propose a new technique where language-specific mentions resolve to a language-agnostic…Continue Reading

Google’s ‘Device Lock Controller’ app lets creditors manage financed phones

Earlier this year, Google quietly published a “Device Lock Controller” app to the Play Store. It’s a way for credit providers to curtail the functionality of a phone that’s being financed if payments are missed. Update 11/7: We now have more details about Device Lock Controller, with Google explaining to XDA that Kenyan carrier Safaricom…Continue Reading

Verily, Google’s health-focused sister company, is getting into insurance

Verily Life Sciences, the health care company owned by Alphabet, is getting into insurance, the company announced today. Verily is launching a new subsidiary for the effort called Coefficient Insurance Company, which will be backed by the commercial insurance unit of Swiss Re Group. Coefficient plans to offer stop-loss insurance. The explanation for stop-loss is…Continue Reading