Today in Tech News Digest, Google Glass gets designer appeal, Quora launches Verified Accounts, Iceland gives away Auroracoin, ATMs using Linux, Learnist is overhauled, and Minus Jon Plus Jon is definitely not Garfield.
Google Glass Adds A Touch Of Style
— Terrence O’Brien (@TerrenceOBrien) March 24, 2014
Google is teaming up with Luxottica to bring a touch of style to Google Glass. You may not recognize the name, but Luxottica owns brands including Ray-Ban, Oakley, Vogue-Eyewear, Persol, Oliver Peoples, Alain Mikli, and Arnette. It also boasts more than 5,000 retail stores in the United States.
Google sees this partnership as the “start of a new chapter in Glass’s design.” It’s also the obvious next step to take after Google launched the Titanium Collection of frames designed by the Glass team earlier this year.
The terms of the partnership haven’t yet been detailed, and Google makes it very clear that you’re “not going to see Glass on your favorite Oakleys or Ray-Bans tomorrow.” Instead, this is a partnership for the future.
There has been speculation that the emergence of Google Wear for smartwatches means the Glass form factor isn’t top of the agenda for Google, but this partnership suggests it isn’t giving up on it quite yet. We just wish Google Glass was available to all, and for a price less than the current $1,500.
Obama First Verified Account On Quora
Barack Obama’s social media team has joined Quora.
— drew olanoff (@drew) March 24, 2014
Quora has introduced Verified Accounts, with U.S. President Barack Obama the first recipient of the honor. Obama — or at least his social media team — launched the initiative by answering questions about the Affordable Care Act.
Other public figures in the first round of verification include Ashton Kutcher, Ethan Hawke, Sheryl Sandberg, Reed Hastings, Michael Buble, and Jason Bateman (he of Arrested Development fame). All of whom will have blue tick against both their name and their contributions to the site.
Iceland Launches Auroracoin Airdrop
The next big test for cryptocurrencies is about to play out in Iceland, where every citizen is being given 31.8 Auroracoin. The Litecoin-based digital currency launched in February and is (at the time of writing) worth around .02 Bitcoin or US$11.60.
Giving a virtual handful of Auroracoin to Icelanders is designed to help get the Icelandic economy moving again. As pointed out by Forbes, a similar plan is due to be enacted in Spain next month, with Spanish citizens being given a clutch of Spaincoin.
If these initiatives work in encouraging spending and growth then expect to see other countries joining in with the cryptofun.
ATMs Could Soon Be Using Linux
ATMs could soon be powered by Linux, with operators looking at alternatives once Microsoft ends support for Windows XP. A surprising 95 percent of ATMs currently run on Windows XP, which doesn’t bode well for their security beyond April 8.
According to Computerworld, ATM operators are now eyeing Linux as a possible replacement, in an effort to “synch up their hardware and software upgrades.” If operators don’t act soon then we may be seeing more of the kind of fun witnessed in the NSFW video above.
Learnist Gets A Visual Overhaul
Educational startup Learnist has been given a makeover, with a new design, new categories, and a reading list having been added to the website. Learnist works a lot like Pinterest, with Learnboards — of which there are now more than 500,000 — being used to organize educational content.
You learn something new every day. Hopefully by reading MakeUseOf.
Minus Jon Plus Jon Isn’t Garfield
One Jon is replaced by another Jon; Jon Osterman AKA Dr. Manhattan from the Watchmen graphic novel. Which lends the whole thing a moody vibe that you would never guess originated in a Garfield comic strip.