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Alphabet Inc. is an American multinational conglomerate headquartered in Mountain View, California. It was created through a corporate restructuring of Google on October 2, 2015, and became the parent company of Google and several former Google subsidiaries.

  1. What's new in this club
  2. Waymo, Alphabet’s leading autonomous vehicles subsidiary, announced that it is opening up its dataset to academics and competitors alike. Waymo Open Dataset comprises high-resolution sensor data gathered from a variety of environments, from dense urban centers to suburban sprawls and everything in between. Data collected also include that from particular conditions during the day and night, at dawn and dusk, and in sunshine and rain. To date, Waymo has collected data on approximately 10 million autonomous miles driven in 25 cities. Historically, collaboration does accelerate technological advances, so perhaps this could help expedite AV delivery. Medium, “Waymo Open Dataset: Sharing our self-driving data for research,” Aug 21, 2019.
  3. But don’t worry about hiding your stash in your video game console. After all, you may not even have a console after Google’s big announcement yesterday. It revealed a new video game streaming platform called Stadia that hopes to push the industry further into the cloud. How it works No one likes a backseat gamer, but it’s helpful to have Google VP Phil Harrison teach us one way to fire up a game on Stadia: You watch a game trailer on YouTube. When the video is over, you get the option to “Play on Stadia.” If you select that option, the game will launch in that same YouTube window and you can start playing in as fast as five seconds. Then, you can share a video of your game with your friends and loop them in to play with you. And here’s a big selling point: The only new hardware for Stadia is a Wi-Fi-enabled controller. The platform will work on smartphones, PCs, and TVs using Google’s Chrome browser (but not on Apple’s iOS). Let’s take a stretch break Google’s entering the gaming industry with a bit of catching up to docompared to its Big Tech peers. It sold $21.5 billion worth of games on its own app store last year, while Apple’s App Store did $33 billion in game sales, according to Sensor Tower. And there’s no shortage of competition in games streaming, from Sony to Nvidia to Microsoft. Btw, if you were wondering why tech giants are interested in video games… Their vast network of servers puts them in a great position to leverage cloud technology. The gaming market’s been valued at $180 billion. Bottom line: Stadia is an innovative platform...but it's going to need more than Block Dude to compete. May the best content win.
  4. The EU fined Google $1.7 billion for abusing its dominant position in the online ad market.
  5. More bad news for YouTube.... Disney, Nestle, Epic Games, and others have reportedly pulled ad spend from YouTube after a blogger alleged the platform was being used for a “soft-core pedophilia ring.” What do you want to bet they will be back next quarter and this is some sort of publicity stunt to promote their own family "Wholesome" values while steering money away from Google? Big business is dirty. They all know that Youtube houses millions upon millions of videos of every sort .... even BEFORE they ever started advertising on it. and they also now soft-core stuff on there won't last long with reports.... Geez Disney.... Don't you own a few risque move studios yourself?
  6. Google (+0.09%) is spending $13 billion on data centers and offices across the U.S. throughout 2019.
  7. This will eventually get to the point that only the largest sites will be able to survive. Online newspapers will die out..... only niche sites will survive well as children that are completely dependent on Google and will only work within the budget that Google drops down to them. I suspect someone at Google will wake up when content creators start disappearing online. Maybe they'll turn to ranking Adsense pages above Facebook and other sites so as to protect their own sphere of influence? I wonder which year this will all start to happen? Currently we just see ad rates plummeting and traffic diverted to the biggest players When will there be only the top 5? Will Google be happy with just 5 top players that use them? (Analogy of course) Amazon is also eyeing sites like mine..... wondering what if they could replace all the Google ads with their own? Probably is.... they don't pay per click and they don't have responsive ad formats. I think the Government allowed too much consolidation in the advertising business creating a huge duopoly. Doubleclick should never have been allowed to merge with Google.
  8. Google's parent company reported fourth-quarter earnings yesterday that topped expectations across the board. But the dual threats of rising costs and growing competition were enough to sink shares about 3% after hours. Revenue surged about 21% annually to $39.3 billion—and given that it represents such a giant portion of sales, we're not surprised that advertising revenue also grew 20% to $32.6 billion. But it didn't come cheap. Traffic acquisition costs (aka the fees Alphabet pays to other companies to be their default search engine) totaled $7.44 billion, up 15%. And capital expenditures came in around $7 billion for Q4, up 80%. Plus, cost per click on Alphabet properties (or what the company charges advertisers) fell 29%. Remember, Alphabet's been navigating an increasingly competitive digital ad landscape. Does anyone know who invited Bezos? Bottom line: That drop in advertising costs could spook investors worried Alphabet's losing its pricing power gusto. Still, it was a (mostly) satisfying ending to a string of (mostly) impressive Big Tech earnings. via Morning Brew
  9. Until now.... censorship is alive and well nowadays YouTube said it'll make an effort to recommend fewer controversial (*cough conspiracy theory cough*) videos on its platform.
  10. Google+ is being deprecated. The full shutdown is March 7, 2019, but as of January 28, 2019 some calls will intermittently fail.
  11. Hundreds of Google employees attached their signatures to a Medium postcalling on the company to squash Project Dragonfly. Project...Dragonfly...? It's the codename for a censored search engine Google's reportedly working on for use in China. Remember, Google pulled out of China in 2010 and hasn't been back since. Here's why employees are concerned: Dragonfly could hypothetically enable China to polish its act as your Big Brother, and not the kind that gives you a wedgie—we're talking state surveillance. More from the employee-backed letter... "Providing the Chinese government with ready access to user data...would make Google complicit in oppression and human rights abuses." "Dragonfly would also enable censorship and government-directed disinformation, and destabilize the ground truth on which popular deliberation and dissent rely." FWIW, Google told NPR it isn't close to launching a search product in China. Zoom out: From the recent walkout to protest workplace issues to the outcry over the company's involvement in a Pentagon drone program, Google employees have shown a level of public dissent not seen anywhere else in Big Tech.
  12. Link tax? Tax people to do what the Internet was designed for? I do get the point about Google taking things too far and basically stealing website content. When I ask Google a question it doesn't take me to a link anymore where the answer is... it just tells me what that other website says and shows a link below that. Called a "snippet" Why not just create a webpage where all other webpages are embedded into? Ugh.... I hate the modern Internet. 1997 was slow.... but at least I understood the world at that point.

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