Tech News Today 432

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Tech News Today
Episode 432

Tech News Today 432: Android Doesn't Have Chrome?

VeriWho needs a 36 megapixel Nikon D800? Google Chrome now on Android, Apple iTV might arrive through ISPs like a phone, and more.

Submit and vote on story coverage at


Top Stories

  • Google (finally) brings Chrome to Android
  • Google Chrome browser arrives on Android (video)
  • Chrome, Meet Android: Google Releases Beta Version Of Chrome For Mobile OS
  • Chrome for Android won't support Flash, Adobe confirms
    • Beta of Chrome browser in Android market for users of Android 4 (ICS). Does not replace standrad browser though can be used as default. Chrome leader Sundar Pichai confirmed that Chrome will take over as the default browser on Android eventually.
    • Looks like desktop on tablet, compressed on phone - remember what you were last looking at on your desktop Chrome browser, and sync it across to your mobile device
    • Contains advanced HTML rendering engine
    • support for modern Web features such as WebSockets, IndexedDB, and Web Workers.
    • hardware-accelerated rendering for the HTML5 Canvas element and a built-in remote debugging tool that works over USB.
    • Jason' s been using it. Jason's favorite features:
      • Chrome sync for bookmarks/passwords/etc without requiring Chrome to Phone anymore
      • Automatic sync of open pages on desktop to Phone
      • Preload webpages for faster browsing
      • Tab switching is dead simple: Swipe left or right from the edge. Very intuitive and better than managing actual tabs at the top
      • Card-like swiping to navigate through and get rid of pages you no longer need... Similar to WebOS

Discussion Stories

  • Wolfram Alpha Pro democratizes data analysis: an in-depth look at the $4.99 a month service
  • Siri accounts for 1/4 of Wolfram Alpha queries as search engine goes 'Pro'
    • Wolfram Alpha will open up its ""Pro"" service on the 8th
    • Dieter Bohn from the Verge has a great write up and video showing the features of the new service.
    • For $4.99/month (or $2.99 for students) Pro users get an account with a complete history of their queries, uploads, and downloads.
    • Pro Users have the ability to generate Wolfram Alpha reports using image files, spreadsheets, 3D geometry files like pLY and STL, audio files from AIFF to FLAC, and more.
    • Pro can analyze images to build a report with histograms, EXIF data, lists of colors with the HTML identifiers, edge detection, optical character recognition for text
    • Reports are interactive. Charts within reports are exportable - in formats like vector graphics, Excel spreadsheets, and more
    • It'll also be available for a trial period if you want to test it.
  • Those Millions on Facebook? Some May Not Actually Visit
  • Those Millions On Facebook? They Actually Visit, And It’s Not A Huge Deal Anyway.
    • Facebook’s prospectus: monthly active users=845M..daily active users=483M
    • not all visiting includes like buttons, sending tweets to fb, commenting on a blog w fb ID, etc
    • problem is marketing to those in ecosystem but not seeing ads
    • Nielsen counts 153M unique users/month on the Facebook site in the US, though Facebook says in filing 161M. NYT says if US market is only about 19% of its business, the numbers are off by 40M users from the 845M Facebook says are active.
    • FB in quiet period, isn't commenting on this but prospectus says numbers “will differ from estimates published by third parties due to differences in methodology.”
    • 425 million of the 845 million monthly active users are mobile users — don't see any advertisements yet.
    • TC: comScore showed that actually had 162.5M uniques in December. Nielsen & comScore use similar types of methodologies like tracking user samples, so if NYT went by comScore’s numbers FB is undercounting site usage.
    • comScore also says average Facebook user worldwide spent 11.6 minutes on the site per visit in December and visited 32.6 times. maybe not daily but multiple times per day.
    • Facebook also uses likes to target ads and give data to developers. Likes fill in news feed.
    • Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg helped build Adwords Adsense at Google - Facebook could sell ad inventory on other sites on behalf of publishers, and give them a cut

News Fuse





"Hey guys,

Allen your friendly web developer here. You guys were talking about Facebook's inability to delete photos on Monday, and I wanted to give a little technical insight.

I used to work for a startup that competed with Facebook, using a very similar technology stack (for reference, that would be PHP, MySQL, and memcache). One of the first things the database engineers tell you is to never delete, for a number of reasons: Users will want to undo their actions. There are many caching layers, from the database to app servers to the CDN. Deleting a row in databases like MySQL locks the table; that is, nobody else can add or change photos in that table while it's deleting. For Facebook it'd probably affect a few million photos for every delete. Most importantly, other things that depend on that photo to exist will also need to be deleted - things like comments and tags and photo metadata. It's this cascading delete that really affects performance in a bad, bad way. Of course, if there's a tech. company that can figure it out, it'd be Facebook. But it's certainly not easy. :)

-- Allen"



  • ad times: :50 - 1:00 and 18:50 -20:41

Production Information

  • Edited by: Jeff
  • Notes:
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