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Literata.

Literata on a device.

Literata on a device.

Google commissioned a new font for its ereader app, and that font is really, really nice.

Shitty typography in ereaders is my pet hate, and it’s the main reason I a) don’t use Kindle, and b) do use calbre to reformat most of my ebook downloads. It’s not like I’m asking much. Just, yanno:

  • fonts that don’t suck
  • variable, or at least decently generous, line heights1
  • no justified fucking text2

Basically, stop formatting ebooks like they’re books and start formatting them like they’re webpapges. Which they are literally are (ereaders use an HTML variant for markup).

  1. This one bugs me a lot. Super-compressed line heights in printed books are there to save paper and reduce the costs of printing. You’ll note this is not a problem that exists for ebooks, and yet you wouldn’t know it from glancing at the type alone. Guh. []
  2. Seriously. What are we all? 17 year old girls forming cliques around blog design choices? Because that’s literally the last time I had this argument. For the record, I was vehemently for justified text at the time and I was wrong. Super, super wrong. []
2018-05-01T11:33:56+10:0017th July, 2015|Tags: design, fonts, google, typography|

Google’s doublespeak.

You’d really think a motto like “don’t be evil” would be pretty straightforward, wouldn’t you?

Well. You’d be wrong:

The famous Google mantra of ‘Don’t be evil’ is not entirely what it seems.

Or so sayeth Google’s Eric Schmidt.

Basically, while the motto is well-ingrained in the company’s engineers, the interpretation of “evil” basically boils down to “bad for Google”.

I used to be a massive Google fangirl. Nowadays, while I still think they produce a good suite of products, I’m increasingly uncomfortable with the price–in privacy and ownership, mostly–they’re extracting for it.

2017-07-17T11:09:13+10:0020th December, 2014|Tags: google|

Amazon vs. Google.

Speculatoin that, with Amazon going into ads and video streaming, they’re gearing up to take on Google.

2017-07-17T11:07:21+10:0016th October, 2014|Tags: amazon, google|

And from 2010 there was great rejoicing!

Not so long ago, Google reversed its “Real Names Policy” on Google+ (and, by extension, every other freakin’ Google service). Too little, too late, in my opinion; G+’s brand is now so incredibly tarnished after years of mismanagement, it’s hard to see it ever gaining traction in the way that, for one brief moment circa 2011, it looked like it might (disclaimer: I was a hella Google fangirl back in those days; I even loved Wave!). Not to mention Google’s announcement of the change was… decidedly lacking. So Skud wrote them a better one.

2016-05-14T11:17:50+10:005th September, 2014|Tags: culture, google|

Goldman Sachs suing Google to delete email containing accidental privacy breach.

It’s really hard to decide who to root for here…

2018-02-08T08:11:28+11:0026th August, 2014|Tags: google, privacy|

Fibre to the Ads.

Obviously, now that [Google is] my ISP, they will be able to garner more information about my house. Basically they now have visibility into anything we do online that’s not an encrypted transaction, such as the movies we stream from Netflix, the products we browse on Amazon, what songs we stream over Rdio, every website we visit, and who knows what else. It sounds creepy when you put it like that, but it’s also no different than any other ISP relationship I’ve had (AOL, Time Warner, Verizon, AT&T). It’s just that none of the others were in to Big Data as much as Google is.

–Shawn Blanc trusts Google as his ISP… would you?

I mean, don’t get me wrong; I’d love love me some FttP. But I’m not sure if it being owned by Google of all companies would be quite the price I’d be willing to pay…

Incidentally, Blanc is also wrong when he states that our most sensitive information is still safe because it’s transferred over encrypted connections. Here’s the thing about “encrypted connections”; they’re extremely easy to break if you happen to be inline between the two encrypted points. I’ve mentioned this before, but decrypting, inspecting, and then and re-encrypting SSL traffic on its way to the user is pretty de rigueur in the corporate world. ISPs could, if they so wanted, do this to their customers, too. Doing it invisibly is a little trickier, but doing it in such a way as to be invisible to Joe Average User is extremely easy, given how no one understands SSL anyway.

So… yeah. Do you still trust Google as your ISP?

2018-02-08T08:08:55+11:0017th August, 2014|Tags: google, internet, privacy|