Project glass

Google believe technology should work for you — to be there when you need it and get out of your way when you don’t.

A team within the Google[x] group started Project Glass to build this kind of technology, one that helps you explore and share your world, putting you back in the moment.

Follow along with them at as they share some of our ideas and stories. What would you like to see from Project Glass?


Assimilate UK! The British Music Industry Now Controls Your Internet


via TechCrunch Assimilate UK! The British Music Industry Now Controls Your Internet


One by one the UK’s ISPs are falling to a creeping censorship of the web led not by some secretive government organisation but by the UK’s music industry in the shape of the British Phonographic Industry, the British record industry’s trade association. There is no democratic check on what’s happening and little recourse left open to the average person.

In a nice piece of investigation, Zack Whittacker at ZDNet has unpacked what’s happening before our eyes.

Not unlike SOPA, the U.K.’s antipiracy legislation, the Digital Economy Act, has a “three-strikes” system leading to Internet disconnections, but it’s been put on hold for implementation until 2014. So to get around this delay, the music industry is going to the courts.

In April 2011, the High Court in London ruled BT must block access to file-sharing site Newzbin2. BT did not appeal the decision, creating a precedent which means any person or organisation can bring a further action along the same lines.

That test case has led to other ISPs being forced to block access to the Pirate Bay, using, handily, the “Cleanfeed” system built originally to block child abuse imagery.

That means that now six of the U.K.’s largest broadband providers have been ordered by the High Court to block customers from accessing The Pirate Bay.

Virgin Media, TalkTalk and O2 Broadband have acceded to the demand, but only TalkTalk has made it explicit that the BPI is to blame.

U.K. citizens have not been barred from circumventing the blocks, but the total ban could extend to 20 million users, about a third of the U.K. population, although the six ISPs forced to block access to The Pirate Bay serve more than 92 percent of the U.K.’s broadband customers.

So that’s that then. The ISPs have capitulated in the courts and there’s no democratic recourse over where this will lead.

The fact that the BPI’s actions have now created a precedent which could be used by anyone else means the UK Internet is now up for grabs by any wanna-be censor. Nice work BPI.



Music Streaming App Songza Surpasses 1 Million iOS Downloads In 10 Days


via Mobile Apps News Music Streaming App Songza Surpasses 1 Million iOS Downloads In 10 Days


Last week, music curation and streaming service Songza launched an iPad app to join their already-available iPhone, Android, and web apps. And over the course of the last ten days, the company’s iOS apps have been downloaded more than 1.15 million times.

This is a testament to how startups can disrupt crowded spaces as long as the core idea is solving the problem differently. Songza achieves that with some added user delight to boot.

Unlike Pandora’s algorithms or Spotify’s blank canvas approach, Songza offers up playlists that have been curated by music experts, like Rolling Stone writers and DJs. But the way these playlists are delivered is what really makes the app special (and likely abutting threatening to the other companies in the space).

Songza has a feature called Concierge, wherein the app takes bits of information, like your preferences, the day and time, and the fact that you’re on a mobile device, and gives you a list of activities common for that specific moment in time.

So, on a Friday late at night, Songza will give options for a sweaty dance party or getting high, with filters for each like Pop and Hip Hop. Users can then choose from playlists that fit under that umbrella.

On the other hand, you’ll see activities like getting up and working out on a Monday morning like this one. There’s also an Explore feature which lets you select your playlist by Activity, Genre, or Mood.

Songza hasn’t shared numbers from before the release of the iPad app, but founder Elias Roman did say that before this week, the web was their most trafficked platform. But that’s all changed with the release of the iPad app, which is only good news as Roman sees Songza as a mobile-first product.



Mozilla Launches Thimble, A Web-Based Code Editor For Teaching HTML and CSS

via TechCrunch Mozilla Launches Thimble, A Web-Based Code Editor For Teaching HTML and CSS


Mozilla, the non-profit organization behind the popular Firefox browser, just announced the launch of Thimble, its latest project to teach more users how to build their own web pages. Thimble, which is part of Mozilla’s recently launched Webmaker project, is meant to help novice users write and edit basic HTML and CSS right in a web-based code editor. The service features instant previews and also lets its users host their finished pages on a Webmaker domain with just one click. Users can start from scratch or choose one of over a dozen projects and learn how to code them by hand.

Unlike other projects like App Inventor, which remove a lot of the actual basic coding effort in favor of a more visual Lego-like editor or a WYSIWYG approach, Thimble uses a more hands-on approach. There is a traditional code editor on the left and you can see the instant preview on the right. The service is clearly meant for novice users who are still trying to get to grips with basic HTML.

Besides the instant feedback users receive through the preview pane on the right, the ability to publish your site to the web with just one click is another nifty little feature that removes a lot of friction for novice users.

Among the projects currently on the site are multiple games, as well as a “meme-maker” app and a project that lets you build custom how-to pages.