Posts Tagged Google


Posted by on Tuesday, 3 December, 2013
Funny cartoon about drones



Cool doesn’t last forever.

Amazon had it. Now it doesn’t.

I need your help, Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, told his secret planning group. People expect innovation these days. They were meeting in the “Black Board Room” in a trailer behind the executive offices.

Yeah, Said the woman next to him. We better shake things up some. My kid told his class he thinks I work for Sears.

Oh no!

We’re drying out.

Bezos looked flustered. Drying out?

Like an old pastry. The last creative idea we had was when you copied the idea for those Android tablets.

Yeah. THAT was outside the box! said the guy across the table.

Bezos gave him a warning look.

The woman slumped. Maybe we just accept the fact that we had one amazing,  huge idea. Why not just keep milking it? We’re doing okay.

Except we’ve never made a profit.

Another warning look. Sharper.

Undaunted, she went on. What about drones?

Drones? Like in Afghanistan?

We could say we’re testing drones to deliver packages.

That’s not exactly practical.

If Benjamin Franklin thought that way, we wouldn’t have electricity. It’s kind of crazy, yes. But – you know what? – it would change the subject from “When are you going to make money?”

I’m all for that Bezos said.

Here’s how it would work. You order something, right? That part doesn’t change.. But when you get to the “shopping cart”, if you’re an Amazon Prime member, you would find a new shipping method called by drone. If you select it,  an order goes out to the  Amazon Drone Operations Center where the product you ordered is hustled onto a specially equipped Amazon Flying Machine. The rotor spins up, the drone leaps into the air, and, as it is stabilizing itself, the shipping address shows up wirelessly.

No lost time.

The machine then charts the fastest delivery route and, within 60 minutes, carefully delivers the package as close as possible to the delivery point.

I love it, Bezos said. What about the details? What would it do when it arrived at a high rise? One with buzzers? And what about accidents and practical stuff like cost and reliability?

Let me ask you something, Jeff, she said. Did you drive here in a self driving car?

He looked confused. Self driving? I have a driver. . Oh. One of those Google things?

 He paused.

I guess I do see your point. They’ve been yacking about self-driving cars for years. Nobody takes this stuff seriously. It’s only innovation, right? A way to change the subject from profitability?

Ding! Said the woman across the table, a smile spreading across her face.

Call the PR department. We’ll get working on this immediately.

( To leave a comment, click “comments” which can be found at the top right of each article just beneath the headline.)
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The drawing is mine. You probably figured that out from the copyright.



Posted by on Saturday, 3 August, 2013
Balloons for Google



I mentioned (last post) that Google defies gravity. Its latest gravity defying stunt, Project Loon, is cool, cool, cool.


I said.. what was it? – flip,  flip,  flip – here it is –  I said Google would disappoint you just like all the others. Nobody pumps out miracles forever. Google will crush your hopes. Again and again. Because Google is uninhibited when it is in creative mode. It doesn’t give a fig what you think. Nor does it care if it gets egg goo on its face either. It’s looking into the far future, something that twitchy investors don’t like much. And over that dark horizon there are some real wonders. One of them: Google’s Project Loon.

(That’s an n on the end. Project Loo was discontinued.  Image problems. This is Loon as in balloon. Okay?)

Where was I?

Google’s boundless ambitions to connect to every mud hut on the planet had hit a wall. There’s no Internet service in MudHutVille and not much hope of it any time soon. No fiber,  no copper,  no satellites,  no money to buy same.  No Google,  no Android,  no Adwords,  no Chromebooks.

What to do?


With enough balloons and a lot of google-ish ingenuity, thought Google,  maybe the Internet could reach all over the world without rockets and satellites .

Less, anyway

A  simple villager freaks out

How would this work?

That’s the elegant part. Google was looking for a way to get up there without all the muss and fuss of booster engines, without the ear splitting noise,  and without dumping the CO2 equivalent of 43 Detroits into the atmosphere. Google’s “Loons” are delicate, light, whispy things; they drift quietly through the air and are steered by rising or descending into prevailing air currents which do the pushing. Of course, balloons don’t get nearly as high as satellites. But with enough of them in the right locations, they can form a big network and do the job, can’t they?

Maybe. But this is an iffy proposition. Balloons can fail,  prevailing winds sometimes don’t blow right,  electronics packages go flooey. Lots can go wrong.  This atmospheric dance of the balloons would have to be able to compensate for all kinds of screw ups with extras of everything which can be deployed just as needed.  Still with Google’s great  experience running its many Internet “properties”, wouldn’t it be a  logical choice to pull this off?

The project is in a very early stage right now. Google will take its time  and try to make sure that whatever system it creates will work as well as its other fine efforts. There’s no guarantee that the project will ultimately succeed though MISTER ScienceAintSoBad thinks it has a great chance of doing so.

If  you live in a mud hut,  sweep the floor and figure out where to put your sit down log. You’ll be surfing before you know it.


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 Image creds:  The first image is from a video Google posted online. The second one – the line drawing – that’s by me (copyright 2013, D Chidakel)


Posted by on Thursday, 1 August, 2013





People have been asking some companies an annoying question lately.  What’s your next great idea?

Thanks for nothing.

It’s a ridiculous question right? A product that has a big impact on people in almost every corner of the world is by definition pretty unusual. Yes,  the IPhone comes to mind. The Mac,  IPod,  IPhone,  and IPad? All from one company? that’s plain abnormal.

When is Apple announcing its next blockbuster?

There’s something wrong with the question. After you part the Red Sea there’s no “For my next act” . It is true that some have gone on to do the impossible twice. Even three times. But EXPECTING the impossible? EXPECTING  it to be routine? That only happens in worlds created by Pixar.

Pixar and great ideas


Google and Apple have defied gravity. In fact Google still acts like falling down wouldn’t hurt. But as smartphones mature and Steve Jobs remains dead,  Apple shareholders want proof that Apple’s still ballsy enough to be cool.

Guess what? Apple’s is ballsy. But you may be waiting a long time for the next IPhone.  MISTER ScienceAintSoBad doesn’t think a funky watch or a “great” TV experience is like getting the waters of the Red Sea to part. And neither do the executives at the top companies who are under pressure to do something “amazing”. They have lots up their sleeves but not much of it is more than an incremental change to an existing technology.  At the moment,  Google,  with its Google fiber,  its self driving car, its fantastical  maps,  and its just announced  Chromecast dongle probably comes as close as any to a company that can keep a thousand  flowers blooming  but even Google,  which has certainly found some secret sauce (BigLikeGiant/FastLikeRabbit sauce?) has to disappoint you soon.

This isn’t about money or talent.

It’s about gravity.

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Image credits: The top one? That was drawn by me. The lower one I kind of appropriated that from Pixar which, in theory, isn’t supposed to mind because it helps publicize its work. Here’s hoping.



Posted by on Saturday, 2 February, 2013
Missing Science Guy

Science Guy Out Of Office?



Has Google taken away his  Internet license?

Is he being held in a state institution for the criminally inane?

Where IS MISTER ScienceAintSoBad?

Readers complained. You don’t start a blog and then just turn out the lights  Where the HELL you been?



I have been reamed out for not keeping up my end of the deal. I know that I am supposed to update regularly and I feel bad about it. I do. But, here’s the thing. We are buying a place. Three bedrooms, three bathrooms. Nice kitchen. Honking big basement. This is a big, big house. By our standards.

And the huge house  needs fixing up. Lots of it. So we made me the “general contractor”.

I have a clip board.

And each day, I walk around behind the electricians and plumbers and carpenters and tin knockers looking official.

What are we doing today? I ask.

Staying out of our way, they say.

We have smart friends who suggest things. I write them down and add them to the drawings. Sometimes I argue a little. Just to show I’m paying attention.  Mostly I do the calling, coordinating, checking, and making sure  the door is unlocked in the morning. It doesn’t take a genius.

But it does take a lot of time.

I manage to keep up on  the scientific literature and I fantasize about actually updating my neglected blog. This (if I tap “publish”) will be the first time I actually pumped one out since construction started.

I will be back on my regular beat soon; I promise.  A few weeks. In the meantime, here’s something to chew on.


A little thing. From Google. Not a secret, exactly. But you never heard of it.

Very cool!

If you like to keep up on specific stuff like – I dunno – architecture, or book collecting, or phrenology (that’s head bumps and I’m just being funny) you can “subscribe” to some “feeds”, using an rss “reader” such as Google reader.  But if you just want to have fun surfing the feeds, Type www. Very hard to put down. You’ll see what I mean.










My Galaxy Nexus phone is 12 months old.

A senior citizen of a phone.

It still does great tricks, takes decent pictures, and keeps me connected. And with the help of my graying pal there, I tap out this article, waiting in  the doctor’s office  for my name to be called. What more could I ask from my pocket slab? Am I getting restless for a better phone? Do I need an upgrade?

The rush to the future has slowed. Are smartphones  amazing? For sure. But in the world of “what have you done for me lately”, higher screen resolution, faster processors, and a few more more pixels won’t make me rush to the store for a new phone.  My Galaxy Nexus is as good as the newest stuff in most ways. I don’t feel so bad when I walk by the kiosk. Nothing there makes me drool.

Maybe this will.

How about a smartphone with a battery that lasts for days?  And a great display that you can drop without damage, that won’t scratch and – seriously – that can be bent and twisted.

See? I got your attention.

Phone displays are the next big thing. Instead of glass, they will soon become unscratchable, unbreakable plastic with amazing clarity. Most important of all, the display, instead of sucking the battery dry, will help to conserve energy, finally allowing you to focus on  something beside how long it’s been since the last charge.

The new OLED displays will bend easily so that they can be folded up like a piece of paper while still functioning.  Star Trek had great tricorders for beaming Scotty up. But they couldn’t bend and twist..

Here’s the thing. According to Mathew Humphries of,   Dai Nippon Printing already has the thing working. They say this technology has been licensed to Samsung. MISTER ScienceAintSoBad thinks the first phones will be announced next month.

Don’t say I never told you nothin’.

Now. Back to the house project.

See ya.

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Image of MISTER ScienceAintSoBad: My own (processed) image.


Posted by on Friday, 14 January, 2011



You wouldn’t remember Esperanto.

Idealistic project.

The idea was to just make up a language. a good one with a logical grammar and no history behind it to piss anyone off who thinks that the Esperants exploited his people and enslaved his great grandparents. With no “baggage”, it could be introduced around the world and become the new common language for all.

Good idea, right?

What happened?

It wasn’t spoken in enough colonies so it got ignored.

Today, English is the global language. Maybe Chinese’ll be the next one.

But Google’s got an app for that all right.  It just announced that it’s cracked the “impossible” problem of rapid automated voice translation. Still a little rough. It’s available “for now” to converse in Spanish to English/ English to Spanish. Other languages will follow as the technology matures.

This is amazing. It was thought to be way beyond what could be done with present technology.

ScienceAintSoBadRating on this one?



Speaking of Google (aren’t we always?). Google’s announced a Science Fair. It’s for kids 13 to 18 years old. First prize: $50,000 and a trip to the Galapagos Islands. Lot of other prizes. This is worldwide although certain “pariah” countries like North Korea and Syria are off the list for, I suspect, legal reasons.

Shoot! What A Smelly Landfill!

Posted by on Sunday, 28 March, 2010



Several cities are toying with changing their names to Google to see if that’ll land ’em ultrafast Internet.

Bejing, the Capital of China isn’t one of them.

But its good name IS being sullied by big piles of smelly garbage. Bejingers toss  out roughly 18,000 tons of garbage each day.

It’s out of space for garbage.

The 17 million neo-capitalists there are putting out 7,000 tons a day more than the dumps.. uh, ‘scuse moi!, .. the landfills can accommodate. It will be about 30,000 years before their garabage covers the whole land area of the earth, so we’re most worried about those of you who live nearby. Specially if you breathe.

One of the dump.. uh.. landfills is so bad that the social minded people of that area have, supposedly, taken to walking around holding each OTHERS noses.

Anyway, the government’s gonna do something about it.


According to Discover, they’re deploying a hundred specialized cannons to the site and the specialized cannons will be shooting out specialized deodorant which will, according to theory, mask, disguise, confound, and hide the odors from the landfill.

MISTER ScienceAin’tSoBad believes that this is science at its best. Creative, bold, AND public spirited. Sadly, the experts, say the leaders are a bunch of schmucks and that this little trick won’t work.

Oh well..

ScienceAintSoBadRating = 1

Bin Laden. Let’s Google Him

Posted by on Saturday, 12 December, 2009
The Ever Elusive Osama

The Ever Elusive Osama

GoogleStuff: Anti-terrorism For Dummies.

MISTER ScienceAintSoBad was watching the President of the United States announce his new Afghanistan policy – the one where he decided not to lose right away.

And I thought to myself, “Why not help? Those young cadets are going to fight the Taliban and what am I doing about the situation? Writing about Physics and Phrenology?

So I decide to undertake my own search for Osama Bin Laden, using the resources that are available to me as a man or woman (OK if I say just man here?) of technology and I naturally turn to Google maps.

Although it’s still early in the 21st century, Google has already revised every conceivable part of the life experience from how we comb our hair (Google Part) to how we practice looking impressive in the mirror (Google HamItUp) so it is only natural that I turn to Google for help in finding the arch demon of all time.

I notice immediately that if you go to Google maps and type in “Pakistan” you get a picture of something brown.

View Larger Map

Is this his infamous place of refuge?

Then I think, “Why don’t I…It couldn’t be THAT easy!”

I type in “Bin Laden”.

At the top of the search it says “Osama Bin Laden, Possible sightings”.

Oh my!

I look but I can’t make him out at all so maybe he’s moved. But it is definitely a powerful feeling to be looking down on the dusty mountains and rocky deserts of the most mysterious place in the world.

I’m not counting the space under our deck where that rabbit lives.

I zoom in as close as the map allows and start sliding around. (The military’s probably got much better resolution , but it spends more.)

I can’t find “Street Views”. No tricycles with cameras driving around this popular tourist area?

I do see quite a few “walled compounds”. Easy to make them out. But I would be lying if I said this is an easy job.

Do you think, maybe, the pros already thought to look carefully over every square inch of this ground and with better and more up-to-date photos?

That’s the kind of negative thinking that keeps you from winning the lottery. This is the People’s Tool. Go get ’em!

I will do this again. I hope you will too.

I’m not gonna find him, of course. But it’s awfully good practice just in case I get drafted. And if YOU find him, I hope you’ll mention which blog put you up to it.