Last year I mentioned the story of how my colleague Sasha Blair-Goldensohn has used his experience of using a wheelchair to make Maps help make the world easier to navigate. Now Sasha is sharing some good news:
People can now turn on an “Accessible Places” feature to have wheelchair accessibility information more prominently displayed in Google Maps. When Accessible Places is switched on, a wheelchair icon will indicate an accessible entrance and you’ll be able to see if a place has accessible seating, restrooms or parking. If it’s confirmed that a place does not have an accessible entrance, we’ll show that information on Maps as well.
It’s cool to see what a community-powered effort this is:
Today, Google Maps has wheelchair accessibility information for more than 15 million places around the world. That number has more than doubled since 2017 thanks to the dedication of more than 120 million Local Guides and others who’ve responded to our call to share accessibility information. In total, this community has contributed more than 500 million wheelchair accessibility updates to Google Maps. Store owners have also helped, using Google My Business to add accessibility information for their business profiles to help users needing stair-free access find them on Google Maps and Search.
Both Adobe and Nvidia are promising big improvements to encode times with this new support. Nvidia claims a basic 4K transcode should drop to 4 minutes and 45 seconds using an RTX 2060, compared to 11 minutes and 43 seconds using software encoding on an Intel Core i9-9750H CPU.
Now, when you select text with Lens, you can tap “copy to computer” to quickly paste it on another signed-in device with Chrome. This is great for quickly copying handwritten notes (if you write neatly!) and pasting it on your laptop without having to retype them all. Copying text to your computer requires the latest version of Chrome, and for both devices to be signed into the same Google account.
My wife has been using quarantine to teach herself to play the ukulele (and me teaching myself to spell it correctly for once!), so I was especially charmed this year to learn that 1) Google has a ukulele group, and 2) they recently performed together for Hawaii’s celebratory Lei Day (May 1). Group member Eva Depta was kind enough to share the positive vibes publicly:
All this is due to run live—here on a PlayStation 5. Redonkey Kong. (And you know Imma keep sprinkling “Nanite virtualized micropolygon geometry” into conversation all the time—maybe even someday learning what it means!)
Hmm—I look forward to taking this thing for a spin:
The developers write,
MATTERPORT CAPTURE APP ALLOWS YOU TO: * Share your 3D virtual tour on social and messaging platforms with a Matterport-generated URL * Sit back and relax, with automatic image processing, color correction, and face blurring * Guide viewers around by highlighting features in your space with Mattertags and labels * Add measurements to your 3D capture to accurately size the space