Linkly is a curated list of interesting products, topics and talking points from the world of design and technology. This week is all about Google...and some other cool things too, such as headphones that listen to YOU and power suits! Not referring to the 80's style of suits with massive shoulder pads, although, they do empower...
Definitely not a company that allow themselves to stand still, they have thrown a whole bunch of new ideas, apps and tech at a wall and now it’s the user's time to figure out which will stick.
Google Home seems like the next obvious step for them in their attempts to create the next Skynet. This is their first step into a connected home but for me personally I find that having a stand alone “thing” won’t be of much use, until it can be connected to more elements in the home. I need the ability to check my front door is locked and that I turned off the iron while I’m at work, I need that in my life to help soothe my anxiety.
The other stand out is the VR framework called Daydream. It basically gives developers more access to the Google framework so they can further explore the possibilities of VR and VR gaming.
The last standout would be the updates to Google Search, making it act more like a personal assistant. It will be interesting to see how far they go with this for the next release especially in places like Australia, where we often get shafted from cool features. Let’s just hope it continues to be more helpful than Clippy.
But one feature presented at I/O needs it’s own link. See below.
Not the most flashy of things, not the sexiest or the most headline worthy, but easily the best from a user perspective is Google’s Instant Apps. How often do you download an app, simply to use it once or at max twice, only to leave it gathering dust in the app draw, until a day as to which you run out of storage and go on the hunt for useless apps to delete? Well Google have fixed this will a great, bleedingly obvious solution. Need an app for a one time use? Just run it virtually on your phone and close it when you’re done, no downloading, installing or anything. I for one think this is one of the best new features on Android N.
Sounds like something from the Twilight Zone? Well i’m sure there is an episode about it somewhere, fan made or otherwise. These headphones with in-ears as well, analyse the small sounds generated by your ear canals. This all gets processed and then the headphones alter the sound they emit to create perfect harmony (pun! boom!). I think it’s an interesting idea, but whether or not it works is another matter, and whether it sounds pleasing is another matter again!
Think about how much untapped solar energy hits the earth everyday. That leads us perfectly into solar suits that we wear everyday to become all powerful superhumans. Imagine wearing a t-shirt that charged your phone, or hooking up your clothes that are on the clothesline to your electric dryer to dry some clothes! This newly developed solar cell membrane is like a band aid that allows solar energy to be stored. It’s hard to see now why this is important, but a few years down the track this could be the future, especially for powering wearables and even future Mars missions. POWER SUITS!!!
They are back and now planning to run Android. After the initial smartphone boom, Nokia tried to keep in touch with their Symbian OS, but after a few years of pretty much no sales at all, they were bought by Windows to run the Windows Phone OS. After again, a few years of no sales, they kind of drifted off into the ether. But they are back and are planning to run Android, like they really have a choice. I would really like to see a stock Android phone from another company other than Google.
One of the toughest parts of being a designer is communicating an idea, especially when it comes to interactions and animations. One of the toughest parts of being a developer (I imagine) is understanding what a hipster Clarke Kent is trying to get at. "...like it's gotta move outwards from the button, but fade in at the same time, maybe slightly delayed, I dunno we'll see what it looks like." Prototyping tools have come a long way in helping with this but there is still the gap in between a Prototype and the actual app. After Effects is not strictly a prototyping tool, but rather a really powerful and loved animation tool, being able to animate in After Effects and bring it in exactly as it is into the iOS app, seems like crazy talk. But SQUALL allows you to do exactly this. I think app loading pages are soon to get some really beautiful animations.
Storytelling still plays a very large part in out lives, if we think back to the days of when we were wearing bear pants and hunting mammoths, we were telling stories via cave paintings and "ohw" and "ahh"ing to each other. I find it amazing that Game of Thrones have created two of the most hated characters in all of storytelling, I know that every GOT fan is just waiting for the day Ramsey dies, because he is the new Joffery....WARNING: that was a massive spoiler. My money is on Reek...or whatever his name is now.