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Hardik Patel

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Showing posts with label Google. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Google. Show all posts

Friday, July 18, 2014

Google Q2 revenue up 22%, overshadows slow growth


SAN FRANCISCO: Google's earnings rose modestly in the second quarter as the internet company's expensive ambitions devoured most of a surprisingly strong gain in revenue.
The report released on Thursday also showed that Google's advertising prices are still dropping to extend a nearly three-year slump.
Meanwhile, the company's expenses are steadily rising as it hires more workers, promotes products and ventures into new technological frontiers such as internet-connected eyewear, driverless cars and robots.
Those trends have frustrated many investors, causing Google's stock to lag the broader market this year even though most analysts still view the company as a prudent long-term investment. The company's shares had gained 4% through Thursday's close, compared to a 6% increase in the Standard & Poor's 500 index.
Investors saw more positives than negatives in the second-quarter numbers as Google's stock added $5.74 to $579.47 in extended trading.
Besides reviewing its second quarter, Google also announced chief business officer Nikesh Arora is leaving the company after a decade to become a top executive at SoftBank. He will be replaced on an interim basis by Omid Kordestani, Google's original advertising chief.
Arora is being allowed to keep an $8 million bonus that he was supposed to repay to Google if he left the company before April 25, 2015. In a Thursday regulatory filing, Google said it was waiving the requirement imposed on Arora when he received the bonus in 2012.
Google earned $3.4 billion, or $4.99 per share, during the April-June quarter. That compared to income of $3.2 billion, or $4.77 per share, in the same period last year.
If not for the costs of employee stock compensation, Google said it would have earned $6.08 per share. That figure missed the average analyst target of $6.23 per share, according to FactSet. It marks the third time in the last four quarters that Google's adjusted earnings have fallen below analyst estimates.
Revenue totaled nearly $16 billion, a 22% increase from a year ago.
After subtracting the commissions paid to Google's advertising partners, revenue stood at $12.8 billion — nearly $500 million above analysts' projections.
Excluding its cost of revenue, Google's core expenses in the second quarter jumped 26% from last year.
The increase included the addition of another 2,200 employees during the quarter. Google hired about 4,300 employees through the first half of the year to increase its payroll to about 52,000 people. The expansion contrasts with a contraction at one of its main rivals, Microsoft, which announced plans to lay off 18,000 workers on Thursday.
Google's revenue growth is being held back by a persisting decline in the average prices for the ads that appear alongside search results and other web content, a measure known as "cost per click." The average price fell by 6% from the same time last year, marking Google's 11th consecutive quarter of erosion.
Ad prices have been sagging because marketers haven't been willing to pay as much to pitch consumers who are squinting at the smaller screens on the smartphones that are drawing eyeballs away from desktop and laptop computers. Google executives are confident advertisers eventually will be willing to pay more to connect with prospective customers on smartphones and tablets as mobile computing becomes even more pervasive.
The desktop-to-mobile transition would be hurting Google even more if people weren't clicking on ads more frequently. The volume of activity is important because Google bills advertisers when people click on a promotional link. Google's paid clicks during the second quarter climbed 25% from last year.
Although Google still makes most of its money from internet searches, the company has been generating more revenue from other channels such as YouTube and its Play store that sells content and applications for the more than 1 billion devices running on its Android software.
Google executives consistently say YouTube is attracting more advertisers without providing specifics. The research firm eMarketer is expects YouTube's ad revenue to total $5.6 billion this year, a 51% increase from last year.
The Mountain View, California company also doesn't disclose its Play sales, but says the mobile store generates most of its revenue outside of digital ads. Google's non-ad revenue totaled $1.6 billion in the second quarter, a 53% increase from last year.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Budget Battle: Moto G Vs Asus ZenFone 5



Considering the high-end segment is mostly dominated by Samsung and Apple, the Finnish brand Nokia (now owned by Microsoft) turned its attention to the budget smartphone market. Similar strategy worked wonders for Motorola, and now the latest company to follow the suite is Asus. By pricing its feature-packed ZenFone 5 aggressively, the Taiwanese company is planning to take on the Moto G. Let's find out how they stack up against each other.
Construction And Aesthetic
As far as the sturdiness is concerned, both the Moto G and ZenFone 5 offer excellent quality for the price. These phones can easily withstand a few (accidental) drops. The materials used in construction are also top-notch. In terms of looks, the stylish ZenFone 5 fares better than Motorola's clunky phone. As mentioned in its review, Asus has "borrowed" the design elements from HTC's premium handset, One, but we are not complaining since it looks nice.

Display
The ZenFone 5 as its name suggests sports a 5-inch screen, while the Moto G settles for a 4.5-incher. Both these panels are IPS type so the colour reproduction and viewing angles are good. These screens are covered by Corning's Gorilla Glass 3. Since the Moto G packs in HD resolution in a relatively smaller size, you get higher pixel density. It's 325 ppi Vs. ZenFone 5's 294 ppi to be precise. However, it doesn't make much of a difference. So I think it's a tie in the screen department.
Software
Moto G supports the latest Android 4.4 Kitkat, which is a great thing at this price tag. The stock Android interface looks much better than what Samsung, Sony, LG, Lenovo, and Gionee offer. On the other hand, Asus offers highly-modified ZenUI. Thankfully, it looks and performs very well. Plus, it's more consistent and cohesive compared to Google's design language. However, as far as the version number is concerned, Asus lags behind Moto with Android 4.3 Jelly Bean. Coming to the subject of future updates, Moto G has a clear advantage. It's eligible for Android L, while the ZenFone 5 hasn't even got Kitkat yet.

Firepower
The Moto G is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 400 chipset. Based on ARM's tried-and-tested Cortex A7 architecture, the SoC (System on Chip) is clocked at 1.2 GHz. Then, there's 1 GB RAM and Adreno 305 GPU to handle gaming. On the other hand, the ZenFone 5 is based on Intel's Atom platform. This particular handset runs a Dual-Core Atom Z2560 chipset clocked at 1.6 GHz. It features 1 GB \ 2 GB (16 GB version) RAM and PowerVR SGX544MP2 GPU. That's more than enough to handle all the popular Android games including Real Racing 3. In terms of performance, Asus' device is as good as the Moto G.
Camera
The ZenFone 5 sports an 8 megapixel camera. It comes with PixelMaster enhancement, which let's you snap decent photographs in low-light conditions. In well-lit environments, the ZenFone 5 produces quality images. Compared to it, Moto G's 5 megapixel camera module disappoints with its performance. Forget night-mode, even in normal conditions, Motorola's handset produces grainy pictures. So if you're into photography, ZenFone 5 is a much better option than the Moto G.
Miscellaneous Features
Contrary to Motorola, the Taiwanese brand Asus duly covers all the essential accessories such as a wall charger, USB cable, and decent earphones. Another area where Asus takes the lead is the expandable storage. It supports up to 64 GB microSD card slot. On the other hand, you're stuck with limited space to store your music and movies on the Moto G.
Price
The Moto G (16 GB) costs Rs 14,000. There's no point in buying an 8 GB version, as the Moto G lacks a microSD card slot. In comparison, priced at Rs 10,000 (8 GB + microSD slot), the ZenFone makes the Moto G look overpriced. For us price conscious Indians, that makes a lot of difference. So the aggressive pricing clearly puts the Asus' product ahead of the Moto G.

How To: Make Your Android Phone's Battery Last Longer



One of the biggest problems with Android is its lacklustre battery life. Compared to iOS and Windows Phone, Google's mobile platform saps battery at a faster rate. Many Android phones don't even last from dawn till dusk. There's no silver bullet to solve this problem. However, by altering a few settings, you can make your device's juice last a little longer. Here's how to go on about it:

Lower The Screen Brightness
Cranking up the brightness improves the screen readability. However, high screen brightness can drain your phone's battery like anything. So if you want your phone's battery to last longer, go to Settings, and set the brightness to the lowest value you're comfortable with. If your phone has an AMOLED screen, use a black background. AMOLED, being an emissive type screen, can switch off pixels to produce deep blacks. In effect, the phone requires relatively less juice to power the display. In addition to this, shorten your phone's screen timeout time to minimum.
De-Activate Live Wallpapers And Useless Widgets
Unique to Android, the Live Wallpapers look fancy. However, rendering all these real-time animations take a toll on the battery life. If you want to conserve the phone's battery, do not use the live wallpapers. Similarly, widgets continuously consume your phone's battery. However, some of the widgets are useful as they serve you the information right on the homescreen. So, what you need to do is remove the widgets that you don't really require.
Use Wi-Fi Instead Of 3G
To make the most of your smartphone, it needs to be connected to Internet all the time. While 3G offers excellent browsing and download speeds, it eats-up battery rapidly. Things get worse, when the 3G signal reception is weak and flaky. On the other hand, in recent smartphones, Wi-Fi uses less battery compared to 3G. So whenever available, make it a point to choose Wi-Fi over 3G data. Plus, it will also help you save money on data charges.
Keep GPS And Bluetooth Off
Smartphones these days come with a multiple wireless radios including Bluetooth, GPS, NFC, and Wi-Fi. Save for Wi-Fi, you don't require these connectivity options most of the times. Therefore, it's advisable to switch them off unless you're actually using these features. On stock Android, you can quickly do so by pulling down notification bar and then selecting the Settings Panel. If not all, at least keep the GPS and Bluetooth radios off as these two connectivity options drain the battery at a rapid pace.
Keep A Check On Background Processes
From the multitasking menu, clear the list of recently used apps. You don't want to keep a heavy game run in the background as it can hurt your phone's battery life real bad. Also, check the list of services running in the background. If you see any unnecessary process running there, stop it. If you're unsure about a certain service, click on it to find more information regarding it.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Motorola to replicate India success in South East Asia



BANGALORE: Mobile phone brand Motorola is hoping to replicate the success it has had with the web-only strategy in India in other markets like Indonesia.

Five months ago Motorola started selling its phones in India only through online retailer Flipkart. The site has sold one million Motorola phones across three models in that time, said Flipkart chief executive Sachin Bansal.

Last month the company started selling its Moto G phones in Indonesia only through online portal Lazada, backed by German investor Rocket Internet.

"We are leveraging lessons learnt here and applying it in Indonesia," said Magnus Ahlqvist, corporate vice president for Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia-Pacific at Motorola Mobility.

Ahlqvist said the company is now evaluating the online-only route in other markets in South East Asia.

The Motorola partnership has worked well for Flipkart as well. The cheapest Motorola phone, Moto E, is priced at Rs 6,999. That would mean Flipkart has sold at least Rs 700 crore worth Motorola products in just five months. Last fiscal Flipkart sold Rs 6,000 crore worth of goods.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Android L Camera 2 API Features Include Burst Mode, HDR+ and More



After the release of Android L Preview source code for Nexus devices, we now have details on what features the new Camera 2 API includes and what Google has been working on from the past few months.
Android Police reveals some of the features that the new Camera 2 API brings along and how it is bumped up over its previous interface.
One of the most touted features of the Android L Camera 2 API is its ability to deliver full resolution images at the same speed the hardware is designed to capture. This means that the Nexus 5 , using the Camera 2 API, can capture videos at 30 frames per second in its maximum 8-megapixels resolution.
The Android L's Camera 2 API also includes the burst mode, Digital Negative Format, HDR+ alongside a complete manual control on the post-processing features.
Some of the other reported features included in Android L's Camera 2 API that can be controlled are exposure time, ISO sensitivity, frame duration, lens focus distance, flash trigger, colour correction matrix, jpeg metadata, tonemap curve, crop region, AE/ AF/ AWB mode, AE/ AWB lock, AF trigger, precapture AE trigger, metering regions, exposure compensation, target FPS range, capture intent, and video stabilization.
Last Google updated its Camera app in May with version 2.2 for devices running Android 4.4+ KitKat OS. The update featured two new Panorama capturing modes, besides the existing horizontal and vertical Panorama modes. The two new Panorama modes are said to be fisheye mode and wide-angle mode. The update also let users the option to click images in 16:9 ratio along with a timer mode with 10 seconds and 3 seconds option.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Google buys music streaming service Songza


SAN FRANCISCO: Google is fine-tuning its digital music strategy with the acquisition of Songza, a service that creates soundtracks tailored for people's changing moods. 

Financial terms of the deal announced Tuesday were not disclosed. That means the price is considered to be too small to affect Google, which ended March with $59 billion in cash. 

The acquisition highlights the growing importance of services that customize playlists as more people listen to music through internet connections on their smartphones, tablets and personal computers. 

Apple is buying headphone maker Beats Electronics for $3 billion largely because it prizes the song-picking prowess of a digital music service that Beats has been building. The music service combines automated formulas with the expertise of a team led by Beats' co-founders, longtime recording industry executive Jimmy Iovine and hip-hop producer and rapper Dr Dre. 

Amazon.com also recently rolled out a music-streaming service that is part the company's $99-per-year Prime package. 

Those two technology powerhouses, along with Google, are trying to topple the early leaders in music streaming, Pandora Media and Spotify. 

No immediate changes will occur at Songza, which makes applications for Apple's iPhone, iPad and devices running on Google's Android software. 

"We can't think of a better company to join in our quest to provide the perfect soundtrack for everything you do," Songza said in a post announcing its sale. 

Google plans to blend Songza's technology into its own music-streaming service, which costs $10 per month. Songza's tools also might be used to recommend musical videos at Google's YouTube site, which is preparing to introduce a subscription option, too.

Friday, June 27, 2014

How Google Now puts Siri to shame


If you have Siri set to speak in English, she will not understand the word "gracias." But Google on Thursday updated its Google Now voice search and assistant app so it can quickly switch between multiple languages on the fly, CNET reports.

Rather than select a single language setting from Google's list of about 50, Google Now can now recognize and understand the speaker's language and allow users to switch up to seven different ones on the fly. According to Google, you'll have to pre-select your secondary languages, but after that the feature will work automatically.

In an interview with CNET, Google said "seemingly simple language-recognition tasks are much harder than they appear," and that it's still working on making Google Now a true linguist by understanding complex accents and minimizing ambient noise.

Simultaneous multi-language support will roll out to Google Now users within "the coming days," Google said.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Android L: 8 New Features in the Next Major Android Release

Android has grown from a tiny upstart to the world's dominant mobile computing platform with over a billion active users. Google isn't sitting still, though, and has just unveiled what it calls the most ambitious Android release yet. Currently known only as Android L, there's no dessert-themed codename or even formal version number yet. Android L will release later this year, though an exact date isn't known.
We hope to see new smartphones launch around the same time which take advantage of all the new features, and also updates to existing smartphones. HTC is amongst the companies committed to bringing it to its existing HTC One family, while others should announce support soon.
Here are some of the most exciting new features of Android L



   Material design
Android will receive a complete visual overhaul aimed at promoting a consistent experience across Android device sizes and types. The new "Material Design" identity is bolder, more colourful, and more animated. Every transition between screens and every user interaction has been refined, down to the system-wide Roboto typeface and the Android navigation buttons.
Screen elements will be able to simulate depth, with automatic shadows and scaling, but will also inherit elements of classic magazine typography and layout. There's more emphasis on simple shapes and consistent actions that lead you from one app into another. Google's new design page offers hints of what is to come.
The change could also be aimed at discouraging third-party vendors from developing custom Android overlays which greatly deviate from Google's vision. A strong enough core UI experience could lead users to reject anything seen as inferior to it.
The Material Design identity integrates elements of responsive Web design and will extend to other Google properties including Gmail, which will be redesigned for the Web as well as mobile apps. Material Design takes into account the fact that touch, voice, mouse and keyboard are all equally important input methods, clearly illustrating goals above and beyond smartphone usage scenarios.



Improved notifications
You will be able to interact with notifications more easily in Android L. For starters, you can choose which ones show up on the lock screen and what amount of detail they'll show. You can decide whether snippets of actual messages are displayed when your phone is potentially visible to others, or whether more details will only be revealed when you unlock it. They also aren't necessarily displayed in chronological order anymore - the OS can learn which ones you're more likely to respond to urgently and prioritise those.
There's also a new type of notification altogether - Google calls these heads ups. These appear on top of whatever you're doing and allow you to take action or dismiss them immediately. These are meant to be less intrusive, and can be used for things that can't wait, such as incoming calls.
Trusted environments
Speaking of the lock screen, you'll soon be able to have your phone detect when it's in a trusted environment, which will dispense with the lock code. This could be triggered by the presence of a Bluetooth device such a smartwatch that you wear all the time, a specific Wi-Fi access point, or other factors. When the environment is deemed safe, you won't have to bother with unlocking your phone.



Project Volta, battery improvements
Android L will be able to manage battery life much better, but Google's moves go beyond that to the app development stage, for which new tools have been developed that let developers track battery drain and optimise apps before they ever reach end users. The battery saver mode is similar to those implemented by third parties so far - non-essential services can be turned off or made to run only at intervals in order to save power. Android L will also be able to lower the screen refresh rate, reduce the frequency of data exchanges, or force apps to change their behaviour to match the prevailing battery state.
Google Fit
Everyone's getting into health and activity tracking, and Google is no exception. The new Google Fit framework will take Apple's Healthkit head on, tying into sensors on phones themselves as well as connected accessories to collect data which will be ready for apps to use. Major partners including Nike, Adidas, Runkeeper, HTC, Asus, LG and Motorola are already on board. Google Fit could monitor physical activity and food intake as well as health indicators such as heart rate and breathing.
Greater Web integration
There's also a change to the way individual tabs and documents in apps are handled by Android L. They'll now show up as individual entries in the Recents menu, allowing users to jump directly between them. This pulls the focus away from apps and puts it onto all the things you do with them. For example, Web apps open in Chrome tabs would appear much like native apps running on your device, and you'd be able to jump in and out of them more quickly.



Links on the Web can now also be used to launch apps instead of websites (presumably falling back to the website in case the app is not installed). For example, Google demonstrated looking up a restaurant in Chrome and then tapping a link to not only launch the OpenTable app, but also have it know that it should bring up that restaurant's booking page. Google search results can also now be links that trigger an app, rather than links to websites.
ART Runtime and Android Extension Pack
Google is ditching the Dalvik runtime which has served well for years, in favour of a new one called ART. It can make apps load and run quite a bit faster while using less RAM. ART is 64-bit compatible, and is also engineered to allow apps to work across hardware architectures such as ARM and X86. This also means that Android devices will be able to address more RAM than the 32-bit limit allowed.
With greater diversity in Android hardware obviously envisioned for the near future, the move is a welcome change. Google has worked with major hardware vendors to enable more fluid graphics, potentially paving the way for new Android-based game consoles and set-top boxes. Desktop-class graphics including tessellation, geometry shaders and texture compression will potentially be possible on Android devices.




Knox
Google also made a few announcements that indicate interesting things on the horizon for enterprise users. The company announced that Samsung's Knox feature for work and personal separation will become a part of Android itself. Knox allows corporate IT administrators to control work-related data and policies on employees' smartphones while letting the employees themselves continue to store personal data and use unrelated apps. This alleviates many of the problems with accessing secure information from mobile devices and could make Android far more attractive to businesses.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Google to Unveil New Android TV Set-Top Box on Wednesday: Reports



Google Inc is expected to unveil at least one small set-top box that resembles products like the Roku, Amazon's Fire TV, and Apple Inc's Apple TV, the Wall Street Journal reported citing sources who have seen the device.
Google will show off the set-top box on Wednesday during its developer conference, the Journal said.
The set-top box will be powered by Google's new Android TV software designed to play movies, games and other content on television. However, the device will carry another company's brand name, the newspaper said.
Representatives from Google were not immediately available for comment outside regular U.S. business hours.
Tech companies from Microsoft Corp to Apple are vying for space on the TV - the traditional family entertainment center and where people used to spend most of their leisure time before the advent of the smartphone and tablet.
Amazon unveiled a $99 video streaming device "Fire TV" video and game streaming device in April, with hopes of boosting its main online retail business over the longer term.
In December 2012, Google sold its set-top TV box maker Motorola Home to Arris Group Inc for $2.35 billion.

Google to unveil new Android version, wearable at I/O 2014


SAN FRANCISCO: An Android update, wearable gadgets and so-called smart home devices are just some of the innovations Google is likely to show off at its two-day developer conference, which begins Wednesday in San Francisco.
In recent years, the conference has focused on smartphones and tablets, but this year Google's Android operating system is expected to stretch into cars, homes and smartwatches.
Pacific Crest analyst Evan Wilson believes Google will unveil a new version of its Android operating system - possibly called Lollipop - with a "heavy focus" on extensions for smartwatches and smart home devices.
"We think Google will directly counter Apple's recent announcements of health products (Apple HealthKit) and home automation (Apple HomeKit)," Wilson wrote in a note to investors.
Google's I/O event comes at a time of transition for the company, which makes most of its money from advertising thanks to its status as the world's leader in online search. The company is trying to adjust to an ongoing shift to smartphones and tablet computers from desktop and laptop PCs. Though mobile advertising is growing rapidly, advertising aimed at PC users still generates more money.
At the same time, Google is angling to stay at the forefront of innovation by taking gambles on new, sometimes unproven technologies that take years to pay off, if at all. Driverless cars, Google Glass, smartwatches and thinking thermostats are just some of its more far-off bets.
On the home front, Google's Nest Labs, which makes network-connected thermostats and smoke detectors - announced earlier this week that it has created a program that allows outside developers, from tiny startups to large companies such as Whirlpool and Mercedes-Benz, to fashion software and "new experiences" for its products.
Integration with Mercedes-Benz, for example, might mean that a car can notify a Nest thermostat when it's getting close to home, so the device can have the home's temperature adjusted to the driver's liking before he or she arrives.
Nest's founder, Tony Fadell, is an Apple veteran who helped design the iPod and the iPhone. Google bought the company earlier this year for $3.2 billion.
Opening the Nest platform to outside developers will allow Google to move into the emerging market for connected, smart home devices. Experts expect that this so-called "Internet of Things" phenomenon will change the way people use technology in much the same way that smartphones have changed life since the introduction of Apple's iPhone seven years ago.
Google is also likely to unveil some advances in wearable technology. In March, Google released "Android Wear," a version of its operating system tailored to computerized wristwatches and other wearable devices. Although there are already several smartwatches on the market, the devices are more popular with gadget geeks and fitness fanatics than regular consumers. But Google could help change that with Android Wear. Android, after all, is already the world's most popular smartphone operating system.
Google may also have news about Glass, including when the company might launch a new and perhaps less expensive version of the $1,500 Internet-connected eyewear. Google will likely have to lower the price if it wants Glass to reach a broader audience. But that's just one hurdle. Convincing people that the gadget is useful, rather than creepy, is another one.

Friday, June 20, 2014

$50 million Google coding initiative targets girls

Google News


Teamare Gaston, 17, thinks she'd like to be a business journalist. But Google has other designs on her brain.
On Thursday, Gaston and 150 other New York-area high school girls will attend the kickoff event for Made with Code, a $50 million Google initiative with the simple and singular focus of bringing more girls into the coding fold.

"Our industry has lots of stereotypes, including the notion that coding means sitting at a computer alone," says Google Vice President Megan Smith. "We hope to show girls that coding is fun. But there's also the simple fact that supply and demand is not working. There are millions of jobs out there going begging."


Google's event, held at a hip Manhattan loft called Skylight Modern, features host Mindy Kaling (of TV's The Mindy Project), speakers such as Chelsea Clinton and a range of tech-savvy women bent on inspiring the teens in attendance.

Made with Code's mission is anchored by a websitegirls can use basic coding technique to make bracelets and other items; Google also will dole out grants to host girl-coding parties at Girl Scouts and Boys and Girls Clubs around the country, as well as fund a range of marketing and other awareness campaigns.

The idea is to de-couple coding with dry tech chores, and instead show how the skill is vital to everythingmovie-making to helping cure malaria.

Although the tech field has seen the ascent of late of stars such as Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg and Yahoo's Marissa Mayer, there is a glaring lack of female equivalents to Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, says Clinton, who works for both the Clinton Foundation and the Clinton Global Initiative.

"It's hard to imagine being something you can't see," says Clinton, noting that the number of women graduating with computer-science degrees has droppednearly 40% in the '80s to 14% today. "The issue of role models is a big one, and (Made with Code) represents a new, comprehensive effort to provide just that."

Though Clinton says time is of the essence with this pressing national jobs issue, there are precedents that provide a hopeful picture: "Medicine used to be entirely male dominated, but slowly that was turned around, and the same can happen here."

Ruthe Farmer, of the National Center for Women and Information Technology, says the shift can't happen soon enough.

"It's been a five-alarm fire for some time now, ever since Bill Gates told Congress decades ago that if we didn't fix education he wouldn't be able to hire their kids," says Farmer, who is speaking at the Google event. "We need a wider swath of kids to come into this field. But why not focus on the majority of college graduates: women?"

By the year 2020, there will be 1.4 million programming-related jobs but only about a quarter of qualified candidates available to fill those roles, according to Code.org, which lobbies for the discipline to be taught more widely in schools.

Those who are qualified tend to be men, as evidenced by a far-from-surprising Google report last month noting its workforce was 70% male. LinkedIn recently revealed its rosters were 61% male, and more than half are white.

Kaling, who is of Indian decent, jokes that "as a very nerdy, indoor kid, I would have been a candidate for coding, but instead I sat around a wrote plays." She says that making coding accessible and fun can help overturn the stereotype that coding isabout boys and video game-making.

"I always felt tech stuff was for boys, but clearly that's not the case," she says. "This is a cultural thing, and we've got to overcome it."

Brittany Wegner, 19, will be a freshman at Duke University next fall, focusing on the intersection of computer science and biology. Although she was the only girl in her Florida middle school's coding course, her teacher was an inspirational woman — a gift she hopes to repay by speaking to the assembled high school students.

"I think many girls just think of coding and gaming, but I'm using it to work on breast cancer diagnostics," says the Sarasota, Fla., native. "It's important for girls to feel empowered and passionate about this skill. It's not just about math, there's a lot of creative thinking involved in coding."

Wegner recalls attending a United Nations session awhile backHillary Rodham Clinton spoke about the need for women to increase their presence in traditionally male-dominated professions.

"It's exciting to live in a day and age when we're finally realizing that the skills and viewpoints of women in computer science will only enhance the field as a whole," she says. "We need to be involved."

Aspiring journalist Gaston may already have the coding bug. The Central Park East student has already taught herself the basics.

"I thought it would be difficult, but it really wasn't," she says with a laugh. "A lot of my girlfriends seem to be curious. I guess that's a good thing." 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Google dealt massive blow in Canada regarding search


Google Image
The Canadian Supreme Court has put Google on its heels, ruling that search results must be scrubbed clean all over the globe. In a case that had one company asking that Google remove search results of a rival, the courts ruled that those results must be banished the world over, not just Canada. It’s an odd precedent, and one that could have a lasting snowball effect.

It goes like this: One company is trying to stop another from selling network devices, claiming they are using stolen trade information. Part of that lawsuit insists Google remove links to the Defendants 300+ websites, where they’re selling the devices. Pretty thorough for the Plaintiff, but the Supreme Court has taken it a step further.

The highest court has granted a temporary injunction, saying that within 14 days, Google must remove links to the company’s sites. Not only must they do so for Canada, but the court has ruled that Google must do so in every country. The links will have disappeared from search, no matter where you do it from.

Google has resisted the ruling, saying that doing so would effectively push Canadian decisions on foreign soil. Canada is not phased, and wants Google to adhere to their decision.

It’s a slippery slope Google is on. Allow a court to abolish links to a company, and others may creatively follow. Countries ban social outlets during struggles; could that lead to religious fingerprints on Google search? If a court can rule that a company be banned from search, can another rule similarly on religious/political matters?