Home TECH & SCIENCE The Morning After: Another Google surprise spoiled

The Morning After: Another Google surprise spoiled

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October already? Welcome to the Morning After as we unpack our coziest sweaters and drag out our space heaters in celebration. Over the weekend, we talked brain-to-brain networks, leaked Google hardware (again) and learned how EU citizens can now use their digital IDs in different countries.

No surprises.
Best Buy inadvertently sold Google’s next-gen Chromecast

Google’s big October 9th showcase loses another surprise. Redditor GroveStreetHomie managed to buy the as-yet-unreleased third-generation Chromecast at a Best Buy that had mistakenly put it out for sale. Externally, it’s more a subtle refresh of the 2015 model than a revolution — it’s still a puck-shaped dongle, just with a matte surface and the Chrome logo replaced with the virtually omnipresent ‘G’ from newer devices. Inside, however, it might be more interesting.

Maybe it is just a visual refresh, or maybe…. The FCC recently greenlit a new Chromecast that would include Bluetooth and, potentially, more powerful WiFi. Although it’s not certain how Google would use Bluetooth, rumors have swirled of Google developing a game-streaming service that could use the wireless format for gamepads.


Thinking what I’m thinking?
Brain-to-brain network allows three people to share their thoughts

Researchers have developed a three-person brain network that lets participants send thoughts to each other — in this case, to play a Tetris-style game. It uses familiar technology but in a much more scalable format.

The network relied on a combination of electroencephalograms to record electrical activity and transcranial magnetic stimulation to send info. Only one person could both send and receive data, but they also couldn’t see the full screen — that was up to two people who could send thoughts to the receiver.


The current FCC chairman has claimed this bill is ‘illegal.’
CA governor signs net neutrality bill into law… and then the Justice Department sues

A net neutrality bill that its sponsor Scott Weiner calls “the strongest in the nation” (after being restored to its original form) is now state law in California after being signed by Governor Jerry Brown. SB 822 is intended to restore the protections put in place by a (now-rescinded) 2015 FCC Order, as well as closing “loopholes” that its backers said could have allowed anti-competitive forms of zero-rating. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai captained the effort to repeal those rules and has called the bill “illegal,” setting the stage for a squabble between the state and federal government.


It should be that much easier to move abroad or open a bank account.
EU now recognizes digital IDs across borders

The EU officially supports cross-border recognition for digital IDs, making European’s virtual driver’s license or bank card useful in any member state so long as it’s notified according to EU rules. Germany, Italy, Luxembourg and Spain have already finished the notification process. Croatia and Estonia are next in line, while Belgium, Portugal and the UK (still there) are in the early stages. The move should mostly reduce paperwork, making it easier to enroll in universities, check your health records or set up bank accounts.

But wait, there’s more…


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