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Google acquires Gecko Design for next-gen products
Google has acquired Gecko Design, which will become part of the Internet company's unit developing cutting-edge products like Glass and balloons for Internet access.

Inexpensive Windows PCs hit the market with help from Microsoft
Microsoft is helping hardware makers build low-priced Windows PCs to combat Chromebooks, and the early results of that effort are hitting the market.

Google's search app gets friendlier to bilingual Android users
Want to Google the name of a restaurant in English and then ask for the weather in Japanese? On Android it no longer requires switching back and forth between language settings.

Carmakers put Apple's CarPlay in the slow lane
Some car manufacturers are delaying their rollout of CarPlay, the software platform from Apple that synchronizes an iPhone to a vehicle's infotainment system.

ThinkPad Yoga 11e review: A hidden Chromebook gem
With its exceptional build quality and outstanding (and flexible) display, Lenovo's new ThinkPad Yoga 11e Chromebook is a meaningful notch above the rest.

Google gets patent to make Glass look like ordinary specs
Google appears to be redesigning Glass to make the wearable computer look less nerdy and more like ordinary eyeglasses.

Acer releases its own Chromebox, bringing the Google OS to desktops
Taiwanese PC maker Acer is bringing Google's Chrome operating system to desktops with a new unit that will arrive in the U.S. next month.

Even rivals are waiting for Apple to get into wearables
There may be big expectations for the wearables market, but the reality is that until someone transforms the category -- Apple's the usual suspect -- it won't break out of a very small constituency.

YouTube music might be a win for other Google services
A tricked-out version of YouTube offering exclusive content might prove lucrative bait for Google to lure some of its users deeper into its digital video and music services.

Many Chrome browser extensions do sneaky things
An analysis by security researchers of 48,000 extensions for Google's Chrome browser uncovered many that are used for fraud and data theft, actions that are mostly undetectable to regular users.

Watch out Spotify; Google's building YouTube 'Music Key'
Google is reportedly eying the creation of a YouTube music subscription service to take on the likes of Spotify and Pandora.

Google brings robust cluster scheduling to its cloud
Google is drawing from the work of the open-source community to offer its cloud customers a service to better manage their clusters of virtual servers.

Google acquires Jetpac to boost image recognition know-how
Google has acquired Jetpac, known for image recognition and processing.

The trouble with trolls (and how to beat them)
A vulnerable person. A sociopath or two on social media tormenting that person without consequence. That's trolling in a nutshell. Mike Elgan explains what you can do about it.

Lenovo N20p Chromebook review: An affordable dual-mode device
Lenovo's latest N20p Chromebook functions as both a regular laptop and a stand-supported tablet. But what is it like to use in the real world?

Google broadens its malware sleuthing to sniff out deceptive downloads
Google is expanding its safe browsing technology to notify Web users of downloads that appear benign, but actually make unwanted changes to their computers.

Wyoming to close data centers in cloud shift
The state of Wyoming is planning to discontinue most of its data center operations and move its physical equipment to commercial colocation facilities.

The biggest iPhone security risk could be connecting one to a computer
Apple has done well to insulate its iOS mobile operating system from many security issues, but a forthcoming demonstration shows it's far from perfect.

Microsoft makes Bing search more chatty
Microsoft has added some new smarts to its Bing search engine that lets you phrase queries in a way that feels more natural.

Adatao bridges the gap between data scientists and normal people
Adatao is the latest in a big wave of startups promising to make business intelligence easier and more accessible for the masses, but the company stands out in a few ways -- most notably, it tries to bridge the gap between non-technical business professionals and the data scientists that many companies employ to make sense of the massive flood of data pouring in.

5 Uses for the Surveillance Robot of Tomorrow
Robots are essentially a self-contained tribute to the wonders of technology. The most advanced models use fast computer processing, high-definition cameras, artificial intelligence and long-range sensors, all of which give you a pretty good idea where technology is heading. In some ways, a robot even provides a glimmer of the future car and future IT advances.

Google packs Classroom off to school
Just in time for the new school year, Google has launched a tool called Classroom that aims to make teachers' harried lives a little easier.

Google tightens Gmail spam filtering
Google is boosting Gmail's ability to detect and block malicious emails from spammers and scammers that exploit similarities among Unicode characters to dupe users into clicking on bad links.

White House's new IT engineer is sharp, witty, and blunt
If the White House learned one thing from the Healthcare.gov debacle, it was that the government needs clear-thinking people who can see a problem for what it is. Mikey Dickerson may just be that person.

Chromebooks may grab 5% of PC market, about the same as Apple's Mac
With more than 5 million units expected to be sold this year, Chromebooks will account for about 2% of all personal computers.

Messenger app users worry how Facebook uses a device's phone, camera
Facebook ignited a flood of criticism last week when it began requiring mobile users to load its Messenger app for Android and iOS separate from its basic Facebook app.

School system CIOs are sold on Chromebooks
The popularity of Chromebooks in school districts may be the main reason they're seeing strong year-to-year growth.

Google backs $300M undersea fiber optic cable to Japan
Google is joining forces with five Asian telecommunications firms to build and operate an underwater cable system from the U.S. to Japan to support rising bandwidth usage and better link its data centers in other parts of the world.

Motorola makes a comeback
Motorola Mobility has made an unexpected comeback thanks to its popular Moto G and Moto E smartphones, but increased competition and its looming acquisition by Lenovo make the future far from certain.

Google, Facebook go beyond social, beyond identity
In order to understand the strange but spectacularly profitable world of Google and Facebook today, it's important to start in the fall of 2010.

Steve Jobs was 'central figure' in Silicon Valley hiring case, judge says
In rejecting a proposed settlement in Silicon Valley's closely watched "no hire" case, District Judge Lucy Koh said on Friday there's strong evidence that Steve Jobs was a central figure, if not "the" central figure, in the alleged conspiracy to suppress workers' wages.

Judge says settlement is too low in Silicon Valley hiring case
A California judge has rejected the proposed settlement in a lawsuit over no-hire agreements among top Silicon Valley companies, saying the amount being offered to compensate workers is too low.

Microsoft slashes IE support, sets 'huge' edict for Jan. 2016
Microsoft is giving customers 17 months to stop using older versions of Internet Explorer, including the most popular of them all, IE8.

Google's big-data tool, Mesa, holds petabytes of data across multiple servers
Google has found a way to stretch a data warehouse across multiple data centers, using an architecture its engineers developed that could pave the way for much larger, more reliable and more responsive cloud-based analysis systems.

Google Fit preview sets stage for fitness apps on Android
Want to measure heart rate or weight? Google can help you.

Google goes after Amazon with same-day delivery
Google announced that book buyers in three metropolitan areas in the U.S. will be able to order books from local Barnes & Noble stores and get them delivered the same day with Google Shopping Express, the company's fledgling online shopping and delivery service.

Big tech firms back Wi-FAR for remote broadband
Google, Microsoft and Facebook are cranking up an emerging wireless technology known as Wi-FAR to help reduce the digital divide in remote and unconnected regions of the world.

Google lowers search ranking of websites that don't use encryption

OpenSSL, critical Web encryption tool, gets nine software fixes
Nine software fixes were released Wednesday for OpenSSL, a critical encryption component for exchanging data on the web, although none of the problems are as severe as the 'Heartbleed' issue found in April.

Google's YouTube buys Directr video app and makes it free
Google's YouTube division has bought the Directr movie-making app for smartphones and will offer it free.

Google acquires Emu texting and virtual assistant app
Google has acquired Emu, a text-messaging app with a built-in virtual assistant created by a veteran of Apple's Siri team.

Galaxy Note 4 won't turn around Samsung's ailing fortunes, analysts say
Samsung Electronics is expected to soon launch the Galaxy Note 4 in a bid to help improve its ailing fortunes in the high-end segment of the smartphone market.

Navdy's planned heads-up car display works with iPhone or Android
A crowdfunding project hopes to attract enough money to develop the heads-up car display, which can be controlled by voice or hand gestures and syncs with iPhone or Android devices.

Google ships 64-bit Chrome for OS X
Google has pushed the 64-bit version of Chrome for Windows to the browser's Beta distribution channel, and boosted Chrome for OS X to 64-bit on the more preliminary Canary and Dev builds.

User Beware: That Mobile App is Spying on You
Those apps you download on your smartphone may be free or very cheap, but there's a hidden price you should be aware of: loss of privacy.

What Google I/O Moves Mean for Developers, Small Businesses and Consumers
This year's Google I/O Conference showcased an enthusiastic love affair between Android and its fans. Sundar Pichai, senior vice president of Android, Chrome and Google Apps, told conference attendees that Android phones and tablets are everywhere. Android now has 1 billion users who check their phones 100 billion times a day, take 93 million selfies and walk 1.5 trillion steps.

Audience Is Dead, Long Live Active Content Consumers
Audience is dead, says Eric Solomon, head of brand strategy at Google and YouTube. The notion of an audience in today's hyperactive, hyperlinked world just doesn't fit anymore, he tells attendees at last week's [a]list Summit.

Web acceleration protocol nears completion
When it comes to speeding up Web traffic over the Internet, sometimes too much of a good thing may not be such a good thing at all.

Why your online identity can never really be erased
One seemingly unshakeable truth about the online world since it began is this: The Internet never forgets. Once you post anything online, it is recoverable forever -- the claims of former IRS official Lois Lerner about "lost" emails notwithstanding. Even promises of photos disappearing after a few seconds have been shown to be bogus.

Build your own private cloud
Borrowing from public cloud architecture and technologies, the private cloud weaves a new management layer around virtualized data center systems

Ron Miller: Spain's link tax taxes my patience
The so-called Google tax is a desperate and wrongheaded gambit to save traditional newspapers.

Chrome passes 20% share milestone, locks up 2nd place
Google's Chrome browser last month broke the 20% user share bar for the first time, according to Net Applications.

Google offloads mystery barge to marine company
The Boston-based barge and marine contracting company that bought one of Google's mystery barges is still trying to figure out what to do with it.

Android vulnerability still a threat after nearly two years
Security researchers have recently found a vulnerability that could be used to hijack Android apps and devices, but an older issue that can have the same effect remains a significant threat nearly two years after its discovery, according to security firm Bromium.

Microsoft Office 365 vs. Google Apps: The ultimate guide
Download this handy PDF to learn all the ins and outs of the two major cloud productivity suites and decide which option is best for you

Some are twisting the facts in requests to be forgotten, Google says
Some of those seeking to scrub their histories from the Web under Europe's "right to be forgotten" rule are being economical with the truth when making their requests, Google said Thursday.

One of Google's mysterious barges is on the move
The Maine-docked Google barge, which created so much curiosity and brouhaha last fall, is on the move.

EC steps up antitrust inquiry into Google, Android
The European Commission is stepping up its inquiry into Google's alleged anti-competitive behavior in the market for mobile software, making a formal investigation into the company's Android business more likely, according to a report.

In a hyper-social world, some seek a little privacy
After years of cajoling their users into sharing every thought, emotion and selfie, online firms are seeing that providing more private online spaces might also be profitable.

Stanford surgical students set sights on Google Glass
Stanford University's medical school plans to start using Google's wearable computer, Glass, to help train students in surgery.

Google makes Hangouts more enterprise friendly
Google is looking to make your work day a bit more social and is taking its Google Hangouts into the business arena.

Google, Linaro develop custom Android edition for Project Ara
Google is working with open-source development organization Linaro to develop a special edition of Android for the Project Ara customizable smartphone.

Microsoft, IBM make cloud gains against Amazon
Microsoft and IBM are gaining momentum in the cloud infrastructure services market, putting pressure on Amazon and outpacing rival Google, according to a new study.

Evan Schuman: The data dangers of free public Wi-Fi
New York's plan to turn pay phones into free Wi-Fi stations could be a template for other cities, and bad news for IT departments trying to protect corporate data and intellectual property.

Google's next frontier: What it means to be healthy
Google has launched a new project, dubbed the Baseline Study, that seeks to develop a greater understanding of what it means to be healthy.

If you can't check in, is it really Foursquare?
In their quest to copy competitors, social sites and apps increasingly drop features that are part of the popularity and identity of their products, says columnist Mike Elgan.

In Digital Assistant Faceoff, Good Now (Just) Edges Siri
Call me old fashioned, but unlike Joaquin Phoenix in the film "Her," I'll never fall in love with a computer, Apple's Siri, or any other digital assistant. Siri is helpful, but does it work as well as Google Now? According to Gene Munster, a Piper Jaffray analyst who performed a rather painstaking analysis of the subject, there's almost no difference between the two -- though the Android version has a very slight edge.

EU hears Google, Microsoft, Yahoo on 'right to be forgotten'
Google, Microsoft and Yahoo are meeting with European data protection authorities Thursday to discuss how to implement a recent ruling that gives people the right to have personal information excluded from search results.

Facebook isn't giving up on search
Facebook reported Wednesday that it now handles an average of more than 1 billion searches a day, but it still has work to do to provide a comprehensive search tool.

What to expect in Facebook's earnings call today
With Facebook set to release its Q2 earnings today, it's a safe bet company execs will talk about mobile issues and user growth.

Sprint to resell Google Apps for Business cloud service
Sprint announced a partnership with Google to offer the Google Apps for Business cloud service, adding that customers of the service won't be required to use Sprint's wireless network or Android devices.

Google tried to buy music giant Spotify
Google reportedly tried to buy popular music streaming service Spotify late last year, but the talks broke down and the deal didn't go through.

Mozilla ships Firefox 31, adds search to new tab page
Mozilla released Firefox 31, patching 14 vulnerabilities, debuting a search box on the new tab page and adding a Google-provided service that detects and blocks known malicious files before they're downloaded.

Google rival slams EU Commission over antitrust settlement proposals
One of the complainants in an antitrust case against Google has slammed the European Commission for apparently adopting wholesale Google's proposal to settle the case, while giving complainants no fair chance to express their views on the settlement. Meanwhile, the Commission is considering revising the terms of the settlement, according to media reports.

Google to face US privacy suit over new user data policy
A California court has allowed a privacy class action suit against Google to continue, though only in part.

Google updates the Maps Explore Nearby feature -- for some users
Google is trying out a new Google Maps feature said to provide people with more information about their destinations, or about nearby points of interest, reports say.

A guide to the confusing Internet of Things standards world
Google recently announced a new networking protocol called Thread that aims to create a standard for communication between connected household devices.

Google may bring Wi-Fi to New York City pay phones
Google may be among the hopefuls vying to turn the New York City phone booths of the past into "communication points" of the future with free Wi-Fi and cellphone charging.

Chrome gets sharp after dumping 30-year-old Windows technology
Google last week said that it was finally ditching a 30-year-old technology to display fonts on Web pages in its Chrome browser for Windows.

U.S. court says warrant for access to all content of email account is justified
A New York judge defended a controversial order that gave the government access to all content of the Gmail account of a target in a money laundering investigation, holding that courts have long recognized the practical need for law enforcement to seize documents if only to determine whether they fall within the warrant.

Rise of the Planet of the Lockscreens
The humble lockscreen is about to become the most important interface on your smartphone, says columnist Mike Elgan.

Under Google, robot maker reduces dependence on military funding
A company acquired by Google that develops robots for the U.S. military appears to have greatly reduced its dependence on government funding, suggesting a reluctance on Google's part to align itself too closely with military projects.

Google starts work on Chrome bug that slurps Windows laptop juice
Google engineers have begun working on a fix for a months-old Chrome bug that drains Windows' laptop batteries, a move triggered by a story on Forbes' website.

Quick guide: 25 tips and tricks for Google Drive power users
Google Drive is an important tool that can deliver even more value with these 25 tips, tools, and tweaks

Google sales jump despite mixed ads results
Google's core advertising business helped to propel a 22 percent increase in sales during the second quarter, even while the cost of its ads dropped.

EU privacy watchdogs to quiz Google, Microsoft on 'right to be forgotten'
European privacy authorities have invited Google, Microsoft and Yahoo to discuss the implementation of a landmark ruling by Europe's top court that gives people the right to have personal information excluded from search results.

As it lays off workers, Microsoft also kills its low-end Nokia X smartphones
In addition to announcing its largest job cuts ever, Microsoft today also signaled a retreat from its low-end Nokia X line of Android phones.

Apple and IBM: A winning combo for IT
One thing is clear about the Apple-IBM partnership: It will change the dynamic of the enterprise mobility market in significant ways.

Microsoft offers European Bing users the 'right to be forgotten'
Microsoft has started accepting requests from users in Europe who want to remove search links from Bing under a recent "right-to-be-forgotten" ruling by Europe's top court.

Almost a million fake apps are targeting your phone
Fake apps dressed up to look like official ones but actually designed to steal user data are increasingly targeting Android phone users, according to a study by Trend Micro.

A New Dawn for System Design
Today an enterprise system must engage the workforce the same way Twitter, Facebook, Google and a galaxy of apps have engaged the masses. That means the next system we deploy cannot be the result of a traditional negotiation between business analysts and technologists. It must come from the same place as those consumer apps and Internet successes: the nexus of fast-paced, multi-disciplinary and human-focused development that doesn't look or act at all like the people or processes that created the systems of the last 30 years.

Apple-IBM deal threatens Android's enterprise push
The new Apple-IBM partnership seems sure to help Apple sell more iPads to businesses, but it may also be setting off alarm bells at mobile device management companies large and small.

Microsoft boosts OneDrive storage to free terabyte
Microsoft has begun boosting the free allowance of its OneDrive cloud-based storage service to one terabyte for subscribers to consumer and college student Office 365 plans.

Apple fashions 'brilliant' partnership with IBM for instant enterprise cred
The business-focused deal between Apple and IBM unveiled Tuesday is 'brilliant,' one analyst said, noting that Apple now gets into the enterprise through the front door rather than the back.

Google nixes real-name policy for Google+
Google+ may attract some new -- and mysterious -- users after Google announced Tuesday it was abolishing its real-names policy for the profiles in the service.

Microsoft plans price war to stymie Chromebook growth
Microsoft's COO says his company and its army of OEMs will compete on price with Google's Chromebooks, a milestone in Microsoft's battle against the encroaching enemy.

Google moves closer to selling smart contacts
Google has reached a deal with Alcon to work together on smart contact lenses that can monitor diabetics' blood sugar levels.

Google sets up a cybercrime-busting task force -- Project Zero
Google has set up an internal task force that will work to expose the activities and techniques of malicious Internet wrongdoers, aiming to cut down on the number of targeted cyberattacks.

Samsung, Arm and Nest launch Thread Group to link IoT devices together
Google's Nest subsidiary and heavy hitters including Samsung Electronics and Arm Holdings are launching the latest bid to make sensors, cameras, appliances and other devices in homes easily talk to each other.

Google's 3D mapping tech flying to space station
After a successful Sunday launch, the Cygnus cargo spacecraft is on its way to the International Space Station, carrying a Google 3D smartphone, along with a flock of tiny satellites.

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Nexus 7 revisited: How Google's latest tablet has held up over the past year

With a rumored replacement on the way, it's time to revisit Google's current Nexus tablet to see how well it's aged a year after its release.

Hands on: The ThinkPad Yoga 11e Chromebook could be the one

Lenovo's ThinkPad Yoga 11e Chromebook makes a fantastic first impression. Could this laptop-tablet combo be the midrange Chromebook we've all been waiting for?

Moto X revisited: One year with the 'new' Motorola's first flagship phone

The Moto X was heavily praised at its launch -- so one year later, with a second-gen model right around the corner, how has it held up relative to the rest of the Android world? 

Hands on: Lenovo's dual-mode Chromebook is decidedly different

With a touch-enabled screen that tilts back 300 degrees, Lenovo's N20p Chromebook isn't your average laptop.

Apple's iOS leads the enterprise, Android doesn't

Google's Android has managed to steal a few points of share in the enterprise sector, but is unlikely to maintain this once new iPhones and iPads ship and the Apple/IBM alliance truly kicks in.

HTC One (M8) revisited: 4 months later, does the phone still impress?

When I originally reviewed HTC's One (M8), I said it was close to being "the ultimate high-end device." So four months later, how has the phone held up?

Chinese government bans Apple, really?

The situation for US tech firms in China has certainly become more difficult as a result of US surveillance activities.

Hands on: How much faster is a Core i3 Chromebook?

Are the new Core i3 Chromebooks really that much faster than the current generation of devices? Time for some real-world comparisons.

Child-porn suspect Skillern caught by the Googlies

John Henry Skillern is a registered sex offender, says local TV news.

Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is said to have spotted an alleged child pornographer. The company supposedly discovered known kiddyporn images in a Gmail account, and alerted the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC).

Cue: Moral dilemma in 3... 2... 1... In IT Blogwatch, bloggers wonder what else Google is searching for.

10 ways Apple, Google and others will change the way you drive

Apple and Google are driving toward the connected car. Government and car manufacturers are working with them to achieve this. This isn't just about sending emails or music playback -- driving will be changed forever. Your car will speak to you. Here are 10 ways driving will change:

So long, software silliness! 7 quick tweaks to make the LG G3 better

The LG G3 has a lot of good things going for it -- but the phone's software isn't its strongest suit. Here are some easy tweaks to make the system more pleasant to use. 

Is the LG G3 'the best Android phone ever'? Well...

Smartphone reviewers love sensational superlatives, but in the real world, things are rarely so black and white.

How to move your domain and Outlook mail to Google Apps and Gmail

Do you have a domain with email that you want to move over to Gmail and Google Apps? I've got help. I recently made the move myself. Here's how to move the domain and email, complete with "gotchas" you should watch out for, based on my hands-on experience.

Google assimilates Twitch into the YouTube collective

Google: Resistance is futile.

If you are a gamer, odds are good you've heard of Twitch. For those that don't know, Twitch is the go-to destination for watching live streaming videogame play online. It also happens to consume a higher percentage of Internet bandwidth than Hulu or Facebook. Bandwidth? Enter Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), which has reportedly decided to purchase Twitch for one beeeelion dollars.

In IT Blogwatch, bloggers welcome their new primary colored overlord.

Hands on: Amazon's Fire Phone makes a strange first impression

Amazon's Fire Phone is like no other phone you've used before -- but after 24 hours with the device, it's hard to say whether that's actually a good thing.