EdTechSR Ep 202 – Google Down

Welcome to episode 202 (“Google Down”) of the EdTech Situation Room from December 16, 2020, where technology news meets educational analysis. This week Jason Neiffer (@techsavvyteach) and Wesley Fryer (@wfryer) discussed Google news including Wednesday’s temporary service outage, acquisition of Neverware, the death of Cloud Print, and the controversial firing of AI researcher and ethicist watchdog Timnit Gebru. Updates to Firefox and Microsoft Office for native MacOS M1 processor support, and developer-mandated revelations about the jaw-dropping ways Facebook’s iOS app tracks user behavior and collects private data. Facebook’s new PR ad campaign “advocating for small businesses” (ok, whatever…), YouTube’s streaming music dominance over all other players, the huge popularity of gaming videos on streaming networks, and disinformation commentary from Roger McNamee as well as Facebook’s oversight board’s initially selected cases were topics rounding out this week’s show. Geeks of the Week included T-Mobile’s first 5G hotspot and dataplan, DownDetector.com, and Troy Hunt’s spectacularly helpful “Compromised Password Checker.” Our show was live streamed and archived simultaneously on YouTube Live as well as our Facebook Live page via StreamYard.com, and compressed to a smaller video version (about 100MB) on AmazonS3 using Handbrake software. Please follow us on Twitter @edtechSR for updates, and join us LIVE on Wednesday nights (normally) if you can at 10 pm Eastern / 9 pm Central / 8 pm Mountain / 7 pm Pacific or 3 am UTC. All shownotes are available on http://edtechSR.com/links.


  1. EdTech Situation Room Listener Survey: wfryer.me/edtechsr
  2. Follow @edtechSR on Twitter!
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  5. Check out our video podcast feed and subscribe to our YouTube Channel (episodes also in this YouTube playlist)
  6. Jason Neiffer (@techsavvyteach) – blog: blog.ncce.org
  7. Wes Fryer (@wfryer) – blog: speedofcreativity.orgShared Media Literacy Lessons & Curriculum
  8. 2021 Will Launch the Platinum Age of Piracy (Wired, 12 Dec 2020)
  9. Gmail was messed up for a ‘significant’ number of users today (The Verge, 15 Dec 2020)
  10. Google acquires Neverware, a company that turns old PCs into Chromebooks (The Verge, 16 Dec 2020)
  11. Google acquires Neverware, the company that brings Chrome OS to older laptops with CloudReady (About Chromebooks, 15 Dec 2020)
  12. Migrate From Google Cloud Print With These 12 Alternatives (Chrome Unboxed, 7 Dec 2020)
  13. More than 1,200 Google workers condemn firing of AI scientist Timnit Gebru (The Guardian, 4 Dec 2020)
  14. We read the paper that forced Timnit Gebru out of Google. Here’s what it says. (MIT Technology Review, 4 Dec 2020)
  15. Timnit Gebru: Google and big tech are ‘institutionally racist’ (BBC News, 14 Dec 2020)
  16. “I started crying”: Inside Timnit Gebru’s last days at Google—and what happens next (MIT Technology Review, 16 Dec 2020)
  17. Firefox’s latest update brings native support for Apple’s Arm-based Macs (The Verge, 16 Dec 2020)
  18. Microsoft releases native Office apps for M1 Macs (ComputerWorld, 15 Dec 2020)
  19. Latest iOS update shows all the ways Facebook tracks you. There are a lot. (Mashable, 16 Dec 2020)
  20. Facebook attacks Apple in full-page newspaper ads over ad-tracking (95o5Mac, 16 Dec 2020)
  21. This Week In Tech 800 – It’s Coming From Leo2 (TWiT, 6 Dec 2020)
  22. Did you know: The most popular music streaming platform isn’t Spotify (Android Authority, 6 Dec 2020)
  23. YouTube touts 40M active gaming channels with 100B hours of watch time in 2020 (9to5 Google, 8 Dec 2020)
  24. 2020 Was The Year Of The Twitch Streamer (The Verge, 16 Dec 2020)
  25. Roger McNamee on disinformation’s spread: Everyone is ‘isolated in their own Truman Show’ (NBC Universal / Yahoo News, 12 Dec 2020)
  26. From hate speech to nudity, Facebook’s oversight board picks its first cases (Reuters, 1 Dec 2020)
  27. Jason’s Geek of the Week: T-Mobile introduces its first 5G hotspot and a 100GB standalone plan for $50 (The Verge, 10 Dec 2020)
  28. Wes’ Geek of the Week: DownDetectorCompromised Password Checker by Troy Hunt

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