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Boot up: Android Silver schedule, smarter smartphone, goodbye Glass, and more
[May 22, 2014]

Boot up: Android Silver schedule, smarter smartphone, goodbye Glass, and more

(Guardian Web Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) A burst of 9 links for you to chew over, as picked by the Technology team Evleaks: Android Silver is coming In February 2015... and don't expect a Nexus 6 >> Android Police We've been hearing about Android Silver, a leaked program between Google and manufacturers to promote quality, standardised Android hardware, for about six weeks now. Today Evleaks, whose consistent pre-release info is almost always spot-on, weighed in on the subject. According to Evan 'Evleaks' Blass, the Silver program is currently scheduled to go into effect in February of next year. Oh, and there won't be a Nexus 6.

Probably won't be another low-cost Motorola phone either, now it's passing to Lenovo.

Market monitor Q1 2014: handset & smartphone markets landscape >> Counterpoint Technology Market Research Neil Shah: the biggest surprise was Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi which almost quadrupled its volumes with rising demand for its expanding portfolio & reach extending beyond the domestic market. This has allowed Xiaomi to enter the top 10 global handset brand during the quarter for first time ever capturing 4% marketshare The long tail of Asian OEMs continued to grow moderately and below the industry average as they are high on consolidation curve with fight for survival in the fierce sub-$100 segment.

There's also a report on US phone sales.

How to add a brain to your smart phone >> Pete Warden's blog I am totally convinced that deep learning approaches to hard AI are going to change our world, especially when they're running on cheap networked devices scattered everywhere. I'm a believer because I've seen how good the results can be on image recognition, but I understand why so many experienced engineers are skeptical. It sounds too good to be true, and we've all been let down by AI promises in the past.

That's why I've decided to release DeepBeliefSDK, an iOS version of the deep learning approach that has taken the computer vision world by storm. In technical terms it's a framework that implements the full Krizhevsky stack of 60 million neural network connections, with a customisable top layer inspired by the Decaf approach. It does all this in under 300ms on an iPhone 5S, and in less than 20MB of memory.

This is impressive. Watch the video - includes a cat and lots of non-cats. There's also an iPhone app.

Mapping our interiors >> A Finnish company called IndoorAtlas has figured out that all buildings have a unique magnetic "fingerprint" — and has solved how to use that to determine locations inside a structure to within six feet. That is enough to take a consumer to a product in a crowded supermarket, or figure out the location of, say, a half-dozen workers in a building full of them. It's also much better than cell phone towers can do.

Tired: outdoor location. Wired: indoor location.

Who ever thought a Surface Mini was a good idea anyway? >> CITEworld Recovering netbook owner Matt Rossoff: Computerworld's Gregg Keizer reported [on Tuesday ahead of the launch] that Microsoft in fact was not going to announce a small Surface, and he was right. Instead, Microsoft rolled out a Surface Pro 3 with a 12-inch screen and internals that resemble a laptop. Really, it's a laptop with a touch screen that occasionally can double as a tablet. Which, I've argued many times, is exactly the right business case for Windows 8 devices today. Tablet, convertible, whatever -- there's plausible demand from businesspeople who need a new laptop primarily for work, but want the occasional convenience of a tablet for reading and playing games and don't want to buy two devices. But the 10-inch screen of the first two Surfaces made it less than ideal as a laptop. Today's screen could fix that.

After the event, Bloomberg reported that Microsoft had in fact planned to reveal a small Surface today, but CEO Satya Nadella and new devices boss Stephen Elop -- who rejoined the company when the Nokia acquisition closed last month -- thought the device didn't stand out enough from similar devices from competitors and pulled the plug.

Why I'm sending back Google Glass >> Computerworld Matt Lake: After three weeks of usage, I have changed my mind. Please find enclosed a charcoal-gray Glass Explorer Edition package. I anticipate my refund.

For further customer feedback, please read the following items… A list of 10 plusses and minuses, including On the plus side: Google Glass Explorers climb mountains, cycle extreme trails and lead virtual tours of the Large Hadron Collider -- all with Glass video running.

On the other hand: You don't do those things.

Battery life still not fixed, it seems.

The new internet gods have no mercy >> The Awl John Herrman: While MetaFilter approaches 15 years of being alive and kicking, the overall website saw steady growth for the first 13 of those years. A year and a half ago, we woke up one day to see a 40% decrease in revenue and traffic to Ask MetaFilter, likely the result of ongoing Google index updates. We scoured the web and took advice of reducing ads in the hopes traffic would improve but it never really did, staying steady for several months and then periodically decreasing by smaller amounts over time.

Google updates its index all the time, ostensibly in an effort to kill off spammy how-to sites and content farms. MetaFilter isn't perfect but it's neither of those things, and now it has to lay off some of its staff. MetaFilter enjoyed Google's traffic but didn't ask for it, and now that traffic is gone.

Thoughtful piece. Don't miss the Vine that goes with it.

Hands-on: using Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 as a laptop — on my lap >> Ars Technica The Surface Touch and Type covers have their virtues, but they absolutely need a stable desk or table to be used. When combined with the Surface tablet, the system is shaky on your lap at best.

Microsoft made light of this foible at the Surface Pro 3 announcement today, taking care to highlight how many of the assembled press and analysts were using MacBook Airs to do their liveblogs and take their notes. I was one of those people, so a substantial portion of the announcement was aimed specifically at me (and my kind). Here's a Surface tablet you can use on your lap, as you would a laptop.

Challenge accepted, Microsoft! When Panos Panay and the other Microsoft execs left the stage, I stowed my MacBook Air in my bag, grabbed my Surface review unit from the cart, and found a couch. This entire hands-on post was written with the Surface Pro 3 in my lap, and I kind of liked it.

Top 10 Google interview questions for software engineers >> Blogspot These Google interview questions are some of my favorites collected from different sources. Every Programmer know that Google is one of the best technology company and its dream for many software developer to work for google, but at same time interview process at google is very tough and only few genuine intelligent programmers get through there interview process.

Not official Google. But the questions sound legit.

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(c) 2014 Guardian Newspapers Limited.

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