Tech News

AdBlock Sells Out to Mystery Buyer, Google to Do the Right Thing… [Tech News Digest]

Dave Parrack 05-10-2015

AdBlock sells out, Alphabet employees do the right thing, self-driving taxis arrive in Japan, The Martian mobile game, and the live streamer who set his house on fire.


AdBlock Has an Anonymous New Owner

AdBlock, which is just one of the many tools used to block online advertising AdBlock, NoScript & Ghostery - The Trifecta Of Evil Over the past few months, I've been contacted by a good number of readers who have had problems downloading our guides, or why they can't see the login buttons or comments not loading; and in... Read More , has sold out to a mystery buyer. News of the sale came when Michael Gundlach, the original creaor of AdBlock, announced that AdBlock would be joining the Acceptable Ads program. Buried at the bottom of that announcement was the news that AdBlock was being sold off.

The Acceptable Ads program is a controversial effort which sees adblockers allow certain ads through if they meet certain unknown criteria. Advertisers and publishers then pay the adblockers to display their ads, which some people consider to be a rather unsavory way of making money It's About Ethics in Stealing Games Journalism: Why AdBlock Needs to Die A simple, free browser plugin killed Joystiq – and is ruining the Internet. Read More .

AdBlock is refusing to identify the buyer, but it’s known that Gundlach is no longer involved with the company. Joining the Acceptable Ads program has led to speculation that AdBlock Plus has bought its rival, with trusted sources suggesting last week that such a deal was in the offing. If true, it would make AdBlock Plus a powerful entity Publishers Need to Stop Whining About Adblock Ad-blocking seems like a natural option for any consumer because of a simple reason: it's an easy way to get rid of an annoyance. Read More with almost 100 million users.

Alphabet Will “Do the Right Thing”

Google is now officially part of a larger company called Alphabet Google Is Now Part Of...Alphabet? What You Need To Know Google, the Internet giant, is turning into Alphabet. Here's what that means for you. Read More , with the change happening this past weekend. And with the change of hierarchy comes a change of strategy and a new motto. While Google will continue to endeavor to “Do no evil,” Alphabet will “Do the right thing”.


The line appears in the code of conduct for Alphabet employees, who are advised they “should do the right thing – follow the law, act honorably, and treat each other with respect.” Which is pretty much “Do no evil” written in a more roundabout way. So, nothing has really changed, apart from the name.

Robot Taxis Hit Japan

It’s pretty much inevitable that self-driving cars are the future How Self-Driving Cars Will Change Transportation Forever As we move into 2015, the question is no longer whether self-driving cars will replace manually driven cars, but how quickly they'll take over. Read More , and that we will all own one within a few decades. But while Google continues to improve its self-driving technology Here's How We'll Get to a World Filled With Driverless Cars Driving is a tedious, dangerous, and demanding task. Could it one day be automated by Google's driverless car technology? Read More , a company called Robot Taxi is preparing to launch its self-driving efforts on the streets of Japan.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Robot Taxi will start testing its service with real people next year. People in the Kanagawa prefecture will be able to hail the cars for short trips to the shops and back. If the trial is successful, Robot Taxi plans to have a whole fleet of cars operational by 2020.

Play The Martian Mobile Game

The Martian, which started as a book serially published online The Martian, and the Rise of Serial Publishing A resurgence in serially publishing books in currently underway, with The Martian, now a major motion picture, being the prime example of this fascinating distribution method. Read More , before being made into a movie starring Matt Damon, is now a video game too. The Martian: Bring Him Home tells the story of astronaut Mark Watney, who gets stranded on Mars and has to strive to survive until help arrives.


In the game, which is available both on iOS [Broken URL Removed] and on Android, you play Watney’s contact at NASA. You interact with the stranded astronaut through text messages, with your conversations leading to one of a number of endings playing out in front of your eyes. So, can you save Mark Watney?

Live Streamer Sets His House On Fire

And finally, a Japanese YouTube personality named Yoshihiro Mazda managed to burn down his house while streaming live on Google’s video-sharing platform 10 Tips for Building an Audience for Your Live Streaming Channel Building a live streaming audience can be tricky. Here are some live streaming tips to maximize your chance of success. Read More . The action starts at 4:50, when Mazda accidentally sets fire to a box of matches, and the blaze quickly gets out of hand.

Judging by his attempts to put out the fire, Mazda isn’t the brightest button in the world. However, it’s still rather unsettling to see the panic set in when he realizes the gravity of the situation. Mazda is believed to have escaped unharmed. So, no Darwin Award for him. Yet.

Your Views on Today’s Tech News

What do you think of AdBlock refusing to name its new owner? Is “Do the right thing” an improvement on “Don’t be evil”? Would you ever hail a self-driving taxi? Does The Martian game do the movie or book justice? Is this live streamer a hero or a fool?


Let us know your thoughts on the Tech News of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.

Related topics: Ad-Blockers, Google, Mobile Gaming, Online Advertising, Science Fiction, Self-Driving Car.

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  1. Anonymous
    October 7, 2015 at 5:39 pm

    AdBlock raised white flag in the battle just last week and here's where the news found me:

  2. Anonymous
    October 6, 2015 at 2:33 am

    just opt out in your general settings..non-issue.

  3. Anonymous
    October 5, 2015 at 6:52 pm

    well I saw the adblock thing and i knew something was fishy.well money makes the world go round right.

  4. Anonymous
    October 5, 2015 at 2:41 pm

    Acceptable Ads is an oxymoron.

    • Anonymous
      October 5, 2015 at 3:10 pm


      I wholeheartedly agree. And there are plenty of ad blocking tools that don't allow for them, like uBlock Origin and Adblock Latitude.

      However, an outcome I can see for a short-sighted industry that refuses to acknowledge the shortcomings of its practices is app-ification of internet sites and services. Basically, since internet sites can't force people not to block ads, they'll shutter or limit access to their general-purpose sites from the web and instead force people to use ad-supported single purpose viewers. This appears to be an experiment MUO is trying, for example.

      Users need to fight back, or at least to be aware of the consequence of accepting this equally unpleasant outcome.