The gaff banner by: brulaw
Creative Writing Challenge October 2018
@jesi23 brings us another Creative Writing Challenge! If you're not familiar with this great community event, why not have a look. Everyone is welcome to submit an entry. Feel free to interpret the theme however you want! but please keep your entry under 1500 words if possible. If you submit an entry written by someone else please give proper credit and acknowledgements. There are no prizes, but the winner will be chosen as usual on the basis of ‘kudos’ received by the end of the month. Enter here.
The clocks are going back - help us send our reminder
The clocks go back on the 28th of October at 2am. The clocks are going back, not forward - we don't want people losing an hour the wrong way, so @t_will and the team would like the members to make our annual message. For all the information and the deadline, head over here.
Tips for using Labs
New / Old / Amazing Ideas (written by ijustcantdoit)
Google is dropping restrictions it imposed on Android-device-makers, following a clash with the EU. It is ending a ban on manufacturers having a line-up that includes tablets and phones powered by alternative versions of the operating system to its own as well as ones that feature Google's own apps and Play Store. It will also allow some of its services to be pre-installed without others.
Google announced the changes to its policies in a blog. It said the new licensing arrangements would come into effect on 29 October and apply to devices shipped to the European Economic Area (EEA) - which includes Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein in addition to the EU. Until now, Google insisted that if handset- and tablet-makers pre-installed apps such as YouTube and Google Maps, they also had to pre-load its web browser Chrome and Search apps. Chrome and Search will no longer be bundled in this way.
But one consequence of the move, Google said, was that manufacturers would face a new fee. "Since the pre-installation of Google Search and Chrome together with our other apps helped us fund the development and free distribution of Android, we will introduce a new paid licensing agreement for smartphones and tablets shipped into the EEA," wrote executive Hiroshi Lockheimer. "Android will remain free and open-source."
The EU's Competition Commissioner, Margrethe Vestager, has previously suggested that Google's restrictions prevented "forked" versions of Android, including Amazon's Fire OS, from having more impact. Until now, many manufacturers have focused instead on adding their own "skins". One industry watcher said he now expected to see more experimentation. "If, for example, Samsung wanted to do a really pure Samsung device based on a forked version of Android, with a Samsung browser, Samsung Maps and Bixby as the lead voice assistant - but without the parallel Google services - they could," said Ben Wood, from the CCS Insight consultancy. "The big challenge for phone-makers is to try to replicate the success that Apple has had with monetising its devices after they have been bought, which it has done by selling services such as iCloud storage and Apple Music. That's been harder to do for Android licensees as a lot of the revenue from their devices has flowed to Google via things like Search and Maps."
This week's featured photo is Sunrise by @kath72. Some of the comments included: "That is a beautiful sunrise (bobrobinson), "Great photo" (oliverspooner), "What a lovely photo, beautiful" (yvonnearmstrong), "Well worth it then" (frenchielove), "One of the best things about no longer doing much wildlife photography is not having to drag myself out of bed at groogh o'clock, but this does look (nearly) worth it" (illneverrememberit), "Lovely reward for making that supreme effort" (markulous), "Great photo, it's worth getting up for" (jsmith2009), "Beautiful" (sillygilly21).
Click here to see the original post. Another great collection of images and another tough choice, thanks everyone.
Apple's At It Again
Now, it's time to switch it up a little bit and look away from Google for a little while, as now all eyes fall on Apple.
Earlier this year they announced their new range of iPhone Xs and various other developments in the Apple world, but now Apple is hosting another one of its Special Events from Brooklyn, NY. For this round of announcements, we are expecting to see a few things. First of all, Apple is expected to launch a new iPad pro (Rumours are spreading of a new range of screens, somewhere in the region of 11 to 13 inches, a new type of charging cable to replace Apple's own Lightning and a few more changes), which has been long anticipated.
Secondly, we are expecting a brand spanking new Laptop to replace the MacBook Air, and also act as a low-cost product in Apple's range. Also, according to sources, a new Mac Mini (The smaller, portable version of the Mac that can be plugged into any screen) is expected at the launch event. And, as always, information on up and coming software updates for all devices are expected at the event.
The launch event will take place from 14:00 to 16:00 BST on October 30th, broadcasting live from Brooklyn Music Academy. More details can be found here.
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