Weekly output: Google location-privacy lawsuit, Mozilla privacy-minded gift guide, Artemis I launch, Astranis, Mark Vena podcast, Qualcomm “Always-Sensing Camera,” FCC broadband moves

My trip to Hawaii this week was less enjoyable than the phrase “my trip to Hawaii” (and event host Qualcomm covering airfare and lodging expenses) would suggest, thanks to my laptop suffering a screen and maybe motherboard-level malfunction that left it unusable from Wednesday on.

11/15/2022: Google to Pay Almost $392M to Settle 40-State Lawsuit Over Location Tracking, PCMag

I wrote this from my hotel room during the lightly-scheduled first day of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Summit.

11/16/2022: If You Care About Your Privacy, Don’t Buy These Tech Gifts, PCMag

I got an advance copy of Mozilla’s announcement of this update to its Privacy Not Included gift guide, making it easy to write this as well in conference idle time.

Screenshot of story as seen in Chrome for an Android, illustrated with a NASA photograph of the Space Launch System liftoff.11/16/2022: NASA Successfully Launches Artemis I, PCMag

I assumed somebody else would cover the long-awaited debut of NASA’s Space Launch System rocket, but seeing nobody claim that in my client’s Slack workspace led me to raise my hand–and then writing this from Hawaii made it easier to follow a post-launch press conference that started around 5 a.m. Eastern.

11/17/2022: Astranis’s MicroGEO is a high-flying new take on satellite broadband, Fast Company

I wrote about one of the companies spotlighted in Fast Company’s Next Big Things in Tech awards.

11/17/2022: S02 E40 – SmartTechCheck Podcast, Mark Vena

I joined this podcast by positioning my phone on a travel tripod parked atop a trash can atop a table on the balcony of my room. And then somebody had to fire up a circular saw on the ground floor of the hotel…

11/18/2022: How Qualcomm’s ‘Always-On Camera’ Became Its ‘Always-Sensing Camera’, PCMag

With my laptop inoperable, I wrote this on a Qualcomm Snapdragon-powered Lenovo Thinkpad x13s that a company rep had handy. Writing this post in Chrome on a laptop with a processor architecture not supported in that Windows x86-only browser was a bit of an adventure, and now I want to do a longer-term test of a Snapdragon laptop–not just because my own laptop is on the fritz.

11/18/2022: FCC Publishes New Broadband Map, Votes to Require ISP ‘Nutrition Labels’, PCMag

I wound up writing this post in the Google Docs app on my phone, a dreadful experience that left me wanting to ice my thumb.

Weekly output: Google location-privacy lawsuit, C-Band 5G and aviation safety, Neil Young vs. Spotify, broadband nutrition labels, C-Band 5G explained

The traffic stats for my post about where I should move my home e-mail account once Google will start charging for it suggest I’m not alone in this confusion. Readers: story assignment received.

1/24/2022: Lawsuits Accuse Google of Surveilling Customers, Profiting From Their Data, PCMag

For once, a request for comment from a giant tech company accused of misconduct by multiple states yielded a data point I didn’t know before: At some recent point (Google hasn’t told me when), the company began limiting the accuracy of its location estimates for Web searches to a “general area” no smaller than one square mile.

Screenshot of Arirang's Global Insight page listing recent episodes, as seen on an Pixel 5a on T-Mobile 5G1/26/2022: What’s going on with 5G and flights?, Arirang TV

In what I’m pretty sure was my debut on Korean TV, this English-language news network had me on its Global Insight show to talk about the intersection of C-Band 5G wireless and aviation safety, as well as the broader picture for 5G in the U.S.

1/26/2022: Neil Young to Spotify: Since You Won’t Dump Joe Rogan, I’m Dumping You, PCMag

I would have written this faster if I hadn’t made a point of stuffing multiple references to Neil Young’s work into the post.

1/27/2022: FCC to Require ISPs to Post Broadband ‘Nutrition Labels’, PCMag

Almost six years after I wrote about an earlier attempt by the Federal Communications Commission to encourage Internet providers to list the basic parameters of their service in a nutrition-label format, the FCC voted to write rules making such a thing mandatory.

1/30/2022: What is C-Band? Here’s what a new 5G flavor means for AT&T and Verizon users, USA Today

This explainer about C-Band 5G offered advice about how to read Verizon’s 5G coverage map. It also shared some hope, possibly foolish hope, that these mid-band 5G frequencies can lead to a meaningful expansion of Americans’ choices in home broadband.