Tech News

Google Unveils Springboard, Facebook Messenger Does SMS… [Tech News Digest]

Angela Randall 15-06-2016

Google unveils Springboard, Facebook Messenger does SMS (again), Ubuntu snap apps are coming everywhere, Twitter lets you retweet yourself, and a ball bearing gets the HPC treatment.


Google Unveils Springboard

Google’s Atmosphere event for enterprises has unveiled a new tool called Springboard, designed to proactively show you files relevant to you.

Google Springboard

The aim of Google Springboard is to take technologies like the machine intelligence used to power Google’s web search engine and bring that to the enterprise. Springboard helps you to find the information you need precisely when you need it.

Springboard searches through your Google apps quickly and easily, including Calendar, Gmail, Contacts, Drive, and more. In a similar fashion to Google Now, it will proactively provide information and recommendations you can use immediately.

Google Sites


Google also showed Atmosphere attendees a redesigned version of Google Sites, an extremely popular tool which lets you easily create and share sites with colleagues. This is the biggest update of Sites since they bought JotSpot in 2008.

“With the new Google Sites, you can build beautiful, functional pages to aggregate and distribute content across your enterprise, optimized for every screen. A new intuitive drag-and-drop design experience supports real-time collaboration by multiple editors, just like in Docs, and offers easy access to all your content from Calendar, Docs, Drive, Maps and more.” — Google

The new look of Sites is in line with new-look Google tools such as Google Spaces, and it lets you drag and drop elements in place. The old version focused more on users already familiar with HTML and Javascript, but they realized many users just wanted an easy way to share content.

Facebook Messenger Does SMS

Facebook Messenger on Android is set to replace your SMS app, as you can now send text messages via SMS directly from within the Messenger app itself. As of today, the Facebook Messenger Android app will include this feature, and can instantly replace your current text message application.

To set this up, just update to the latest version, go to “Settings” in Facebook messenger and choose SMS > Default SMS app.


Facebook is keen to assure you that SMS in Messenger doesn’t send, upload or store your conversations on Facebook servers, and that all regular text fees apply to these messages through your phone provider. However, regular Facebook messages will continue to use internet data.

Facebook Messenger SMS

Facebook first introduced SMS in Facebook messenger in 2012, but dropped it soon after. This re-introduction is designed to provide convenience for users, and ideally keep you in Messenger all the time.

Ubuntu Snap Apps Coming Everywhere

Ubuntu’s popular Snap apps have been released for use by all Linux distros. The container-style app packages make it easy for small apps to talk to each other.


Ubuntu Snap

Thanks to contributions from a number of developers, these Snap packages are now able to run unmodified on all major Linux distros. The snapd tool that allows snap packages to be installed has been ported to Arch, Fedora, Debian, Gentoo, and more.

Snaps were originally created for Ubuntu phones and then the Internet of Things devices. Developers can use snapcraft to build their own Snaps.

Twitter Lets You Retweet Yourself

Until recently, it was possible to quote your own tweet or resurface your old tweets with a couple of neat Twitter tricks 10 Twitter Tips Most Pros Don't Even Know Learn how to master Twitter with these lesser-known but super useful Twitter tips and tricks. Read More , but it wasn’t obvious to most users. The functionality to retweet and quote tweets by other people was also there, but it wasn’t possible to use the exact same process for your own tweets.


But now, Twitter has changed things. From today, you can retweet yourself in just a few taps, and similarly quote retweet yourself. This is perfect if you’ve got an important tweet you need to re-promote in some way. For instance, if you’re running a poll and it’s about to reach its expiry time.

A Ball Bearing Gets the HPC Treatment

And finally, an unmissable Hydraulic Press Channel episode. You no doubt know that ball bearings are designed to be in continuous movement, and not stuck bearing the whole load. This premise is exactly why you need to see the following video.

It’s time you saw a ball bearing get the HPC treatment. Spoiler: it loses. Spectacularly.

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