A company that was the cheerleader of the open web is rapidly turning its back on every single open standard they once championned. Their latest move, announced yesterday at Google I/O, appears to be closing XMPP server-to-server federation.
It is only a natural next step in a process started a while ago. Here is a quick, and probably not exhaustive recap:
- Google+ has no open RSS output, hence no PuSH support, no write API, in fact it has absolutely nothing open
- Google Reader is scrapped, along with RSS support within Chrome
- WebDav for Google Calendar is dropped in favor of their proprietary API
- XMPP is dropped, while 3 years ago it was at the core of their Wave efforts
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In addition to making fizzy water, SodaStream also offers more than 25 regular, diet, energy and caffeine-free flavors of syrup (sold separately). Each 500ml soda mix bottle makes the equivalent of 12 liters of soda (about 33 cans). And with over 25 flavors, the possibilities for creative beverages are limited only by your imagination. How about a Creamsicle (Orange and Cream Soda), or a Japanese Beetle (Ginger Ale and Lemon-Lime)? The regular soda mixes contain no high fructose corn syrup, while the diet soda mixes contain no aspartame.
I picked up this SodaStream a week ago, and I’ve been using it non-stop since.
I love just plain carbonated water, and this machine is as good as any water you buy in stores.
I’ve also tried out a few flavors: raspberry lemonade, diet root beer, and the myWater flavors.
In the end, this is my new favorite kitchen gadget and there is nothing like a fresh bottle of carbonated water on a hot day.
There is no unified Google that is “good” or “evil”. There is just an organizational clusterfuck that is unable to decide what it thinks is truly the best way to “organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful”. Is that by forcing web authors into a social network in order to improve directory results? Is that by dipping a toe into the music business? Is that by abandoning standards like RSS and XMPP/Jabber? I don’t think so.
Google has a problem. The problem is that nobody says no. Google effectively owns the Web, and they’re lousy managers.
In the market for cloud infrastructure, Amazon Web Services (AWS) dominates, powering websites and applications like Netflix, Reddit, and Dropbox, and raking in massive revenues — estimated to grow to $8.8 billion this year. But there are lots of players, ranging from smaller companies like Rackspace to big ones like Microsoft. One such player is Google, which over the past five years has been working to let developers tap into its massive data center infrastructure, first with App Engine — a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) for hosting web apps, and more recently with Compute Engine — a competitor to Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) that lets you pay Google to do your heavy computing. Today, Google announced some significant updates to both, adding PHP support in App Engine, and opening up Compute Engine to every developer that wants to use it. It also announced Google Cloud Storage, which competes with Amazon’s S3 storage solution.
For Google, Android was a detour from their focus on owning and dominating web services; it ensured that those services would be freely accessible in this new world of computing, including on the iPhones and iPads that were used liberally in nearly every keynote demo. And, now that Android is successful, Google is back to focusing on “the best of Google”.
Larry Page, on stage at I/O today:
Every story I read about Google is ‘us versus some other company’ or some stupid thing, and I just don’t find that very interesting. We should be building great things that don’t exist. Being negative isn’t how we make progress. Most important things are not zero sum, there is a lot of opportunity out there.
Google fans seem to eat this kumbaya stuff up, to really believe it. But Google is the company that built Android after the iPhone, Google Plus after Facebook, and now a subscription music service after Spotify. They entered the RSS reader market, wiped it out, and are now just walking away from it. Gmail? Webmail but better. Think about even web search: Google search wasn’t something new; it was something better. Way, way, way better, but still.
Great post by John Gruber on Larry Page’s attempt to change the conversation whenever Google rips something off or crushes a market.
Google is announcing its brand new development environment for Android today at Google I/O: Android Studio. Google isn’t revealing all the changes today, but some of the big additions include a focus on multiple layout tools for a variety of devices and tablets. Changes to Android code for apps display in real-time within the development console and Google says it’s planning to integrate a number of services into the environment. “This is just scratching the surface of all the new features in Android Studio,” says Hugo Barra, VP of Android product management.
No more Eclipse!
Interesting comparison of apps vs platforms from Ben Thompson:
An app can afford to be prescriptive about the user experience and means of interaction; in fact, the best apps have a point of view on how the user ought to use their service.
Platforms, on the other hand, are just that: a stage for actors (i.e. apps) of the user’s choosing to create a wholly unique experience that is particular for every individual user.
It follows, of course, that no successful platform can be built on advertising. Advertising demands eyeballs; platform success demands the ability to fade into the background as said unique experiences take center stage.
A handy series of iPhone travel tips from an airline pilot.
This seems to be way too much desperation.. and a little too much 2008..
BBM was asked for 5 years ago, and now, Blackberry has finally decided to release it across multiple platforms.. When their own usage is at an all time low.