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May 19, 2017

The Morning After: Friday, May 19th 2017

by John_A

Google’s big annual conference has wrapped up, while the FCC has voted to roll back net neutrality protections made under the last US government. Less (more?) importantly, Apple has designed, patented and made a pizza box to ensure your crust doesn’t get soggy. Progress.

The battle has only begun.The FCC votes to move forward with gutting net neutrality

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As expected, the FCC voted 2-1 along party lines to proceed with plans to undo net neutrality protections established under the Obama administration. If the FCC rolls back Title II classification in favor of defining internet again as a Title I service, ISPs will be able to prioritize data as they see fit, and perhaps charge more for better service. As Terrence O’Brien points out, the trouble with FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s argument for ‘light touch’ regulation is that it relies on the belief that the internet still works the way it did back in 1996.

We’re back.
Catch up on Google’s plans for VR in under 3 minutes

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During day two of Google I/O 2017, the company detailed its plans for both AR and VR. If you didn’t see our live coverage earlier today, don’t worry: We’ve cut down the half-hour talk into a much shorter clip. You can catch up on all the news about Daydream Euphrates, YouTube VR, Google Cast and much more in under three minutes.

In-car at I/O
Audi’s conceptual Android interface is a lot better than what’s in most cars these days

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Earlier this week, Google announced that Audi and Volvo are both working on cars with Android-based head units. We spent some time in a Q8 concept equipped with a demo version of the interface and came away impressed. While it’s still a reskinned Android experience, Audi’s version does include access to Spotify, Google Maps and the Assistant AI — all without plugging in your phone.

Millions could benefit from what Android O makes possible.
Android Go could help make Android O a runaway success

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Android O might not seem like the most exciting software update at first, but it could be one of the most important. Google has been on a quest to capture and delight billions of new smartphone users for years with various initiatives. So far, scaling hasn’t been a problem — there are now 2 billion monthly active devices, and with Android Go, Google’s hell-bent on picking up even more in developing and underserved markets. When phone makers install Android O on their low-end devices, they don’t just get optimizations to make everything run better. They also get a different set of stock Google apps and a version of the Play Store that highlights apps designed for these limited devices.

After worried airlines pushed back, officials say a full ban is “off the table.”
The US may not ban laptops on European flights after all

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European and American officials met over a laptop ban proposed by the Trump administration, and sources have told the Associated Press that it’s “off the table” for now. While the ban has been voted down, for now, officials are reportedly considering other measures, including wide intelligence sharing, and plan to meet again next week.

I wonder what score they’ll give it.
OnePlus 5 will feature DxO’s photography expertise

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While a summer launch is confirmed for OnePlus’ next (typically great value) smartphone, we don’t know much else about it. Well, until yesterday, when the company took to its own forums revealing that it’s working with DxO to make its next smartphone one of the best mobile cameras out there. Renowned for creating the respected camera benchmark system, DxOMark, details are still vague as to how the two companies will contribute to the smartphone camera, but with the likes of the HTC U11 and Galaxy S8 pushing the imaging envelope, it’s probably a good idea.

The group is worried about misinformation forming policy.
House Science Committee asks Trump to stop relying on fake news

Donald Trump, science skeptic and 45th president of the United States of America, woke up to a message this morning from some of his harshest critics. Members of the House of Representative Committee on Science, Space and Technology issued a letter expressing their concern that Trump relies so heavily on unverified information and shows blatant disregard for scientific fact. “Until the OSTP is adequately staffed and the director position is filled by a qualified, objective scientist who understands the difference between alternative news peddled on alt-right websites and legitimate well-vetted scientific facts, we fear that you will continue to be vulnerable to misinformation and fake news.”

If Bungie can stick the landing, they’ll have something special.
‘Destiny 2’ has the fundamentals to be a solid sequel

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Sequels often have it tough. However, Destiny 2 looks like it might have what it takes to be a great follow-up to the original hit. Reporting from the title’s gameplay premiere event, Sean Buckley explains how the game borrows the most iconic elements of its predecessor, but ups the ante with more spectacular special moves, more weapon choice, and a world (well, universe) that seems bigger and grander in nearly every way.

Looks like an Apple device.
Apple patented (and made) a pizza box to prevent a soggy crust

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One more thing slice.

It doesn’t get more millennial than this.
Fujifilm’s SQ10 is an instant camera for the Instagram generation

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Instant film cameras have been making a comeback in recent years, and Fujifilm is partially responsible for this. Its Instax Mini 8 is a best-seller on Amazon, which may have something to do with the fact it only costs roughly $70. For those willing to pay more for a confusing hybrid: Enter the Square SQ10. Combining instant film with digital camera sensors, it’s priced at $280. It features a newly minted CMOS sensor (1/4-inch) with a 28.5mm f/2.4 fixed lens and an image processor that, Fuji says, will push out the best shots yet from an Instax product. Don’t worry: the digital output is square, and thus, Instagram-friendly.

But wait, there’s more…

  • Google Lens offers a clear view of the company’s future
  • Samsung’s QLED TVs are a dream for color calibration nerds
  • A ‘Dark Crystal’ prequel is coming to Netflix
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