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Bringing some clarity to Google’s ‘mobile friendly’ algorithm

If you’ve read any piece online about Google’s recent ‘mobile friendly’ algorithm update, you no doubt must think the world is coming to an end. I’ve seen headlines with the terms “mobilegeddon” or touting “crippling penalties” for non-compliance, or “the biggest change in years!” To bring you up to speed, Google recently rolled out an update to it’s search algorithm that prioritizes mobile optimized pages over non-optimized ones when searching from a mobile device.

I’ve written before about how this kind of hyperbolic tech reporting drives me batty, and the hype surrounding Google’s algorithm changes are the perfect example of how writers blow things way out of proportion to grab your attention and get you to click. Who cares if the facts aren’t as interesting as the headlines? Read More…

Google to stop selling Glass

From the Wall Street Journal

Google Inc. is making big changes to its troubled Glass wearable-computing project, giving a former Apple Inc. executive oversight of the initiative as the Internet giant grapples with the best way to expand from its software roots into hardware.

I’ve long been unimpressed with Google’s hardware chops and this may be a step in the right direction, but the Glass project has been a boondoggle from the start. I used them for several weeks and found them to be a complete mess. Having the Nest guys work on it could be a good start, or this may be a very quiet way of killing the product.

Google will stop selling the initial version of Glass to individuals through its Explorer program after Jan. 19. Google will still sell Glass to companies and developers for work applications.

Google plans to release a new version of Glass in 2015, but it hasn’t been more specific about timing.

Google being nascent with details about something in a press release? Shocking.

Everything wrong with health tech reporting in one article

Before I delve into this rant, let me start by saying that Business Insider isn’t exactly the Economist of technology reporting. I’d equate it more to a poor man’s HuffPo, but the format of their SEO-optimized clickbait articles (or listicles in this case) means that they permeate the web at a high volume. Good for their ad rates, natch, but bad for informing the public at large in any meaningful way.

I write this because these types of articles shape the opinions of a large number of people who don’t otherwise understand that most of the coverage is superfluous fluff with no real substance. The problem seems to be particularly acute in healthcare technology reporting because, in my opinion, the people writing these stories aren’t even remotely qualified on the subject matter.

Case in point: This article on “9 Ways Google Is Changing The World” Google does do an excellent job self-promoting, but most of their announcements are vaporware that the tech media gobbles up like candy. BI bit hard on these announcements time and time again and covers them like they are real. To be fair, they’re not the only ones guilty of this, but I’ll detail a few examples to show you what I mean.

Read More…

A Deep Review Of My First 2 Months With Google Glass

All Your Face Are Belong To Us

All Your Face Are Belong To Us

I’ve recently been adopted into the Google Glass explorer program. I debated whether or not to accept the invitation, but ultimately felt it probably would be a good idea, if for no other reason than there may be something unexpected that came from using them for a bit. Having had the chance to play with Glass a few times prior to this, the experience left me rather nonplussed. Factoring in the $1,500 price tag, and my interest was marginal. Had work not agreed to cover the expense, I probably would have passed on the invite altogether.

I’ve been using Glass off and on now for about a month and its taken me that long to crystalize some of my opinions on the kit. While I can see the potential for the Glass platform, and new apps keep coming online every day, I don’t think it’s ready for prime time.

Setting expectations.
If you’re expecting Glass to be the future of replacing your phone or tablet, you’re going to be disappointed. Based on what you may see on the ‘net, Glass is not a great device for watching video, surfing the web, reading long text, etc. I don’t believe it was designed with those kinds of usages in mind.

Going in I expected Glass to be a kind of dual threat; acting as a kind of digital personal assistant bringing much more utility and value to the kinds of things that the notification screen on your phone does, and serving specific purposes when using applications developed for the platform. Sadly, it only does one of these things well (for now).

Be prepared to look like a tool.
I don’t mean this to be snarky, but it’s a reality of the device, and one that I believe limits its potential as a mass consumer device. Glass is viewed by most as 1,500 dollars of wearable pretentiousness. I spent a bit of time wearing it in various situations and doing so tends to provoke one of two actions: hostility or annoying curiosity. When I was wearing Glass while around others (not in an agency setting mind you, but out IRL) people would either ask you not to take their picture and try to stay out of your line of sight. That, or every Tom, Dick, and Harry (strangers no less) would walk up and ask to try them on. Read More…