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Jaikumar Ganesh
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Jaikumar Ganesh

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Small team going great guns. And all these are launches not just hype / vaporware in the past few weeks.

Launch Speed - Check, Impact on a country with over a billion people - Check. We are hiring for Android, iOS, Backend, Front end developers in San Francisco.
Cash in India - http://techcrunch.com/2015/07/21/uber-gets-serious-about-cash-payments-in-india/

Expansion in India - http://www.wsj.com/articles/uber-to-expand-to-seven-more-cities-in-india-1435754806

Airtel Money -http://indianexpress.com/article/technology/tech-news-technology/free-airtel-4g-internet-for-uber-passengers-airtel-money-payment-option/

Tata deal http://www.bizjournals.com/sanfrancisco/blog/techflash/2015/08/uber-banks-another-100-million-eyes-india.html
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Jaikumar Ganesh

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When it comes to consumer electronics, I find it interesting that Silicon Valley still doesn't care about China and India as much as they should. As all of us know, those markets are about to explode. Google should probably hold their I/O event in India next year
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I second and third that! :) probably will happen after the explosion?
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Jaikumar Ganesh

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Vacationing, resisting urge to catch up on I/O. Won't be able to hold out for long.
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Where are the photos?
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Jaikumar Ganesh

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https://corner.squareup.com/2015/05/leak-canary.html

Too early to make a decision, but Leak Canary looks awesome - we just used it and found a bug.

Thanks Square folks !

+Jake Wharton  +Jesse Wilson +PierreYvesRicau
Nobody likes OutOfMemoryError crashes. In Square Register, we draw the customer's signature on a bitmap cache. This bitmap is the size of the device's screen, and we had a significant number of out of memory (OOM) crashes when creating it. We tried a few approaches, none of which solved the ...
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Jaikumar Ganesh

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Google needs to learn a few tips from Amazon, Zappos and improve their customer service for Nexus devices. A painful call talking to 3 customer agents and filling in 2 forms - just for a return.

I hope they take some concrete action from my survey results
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Buying Nexus devices on Amazon or Staples feels weird but gosh they are great at retail, I've got my last 3 Nexus devices this way, Play Store needs to pull it together
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Jaikumar Ganesh

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Innovators dilemma - why a skunkworks team is a must for every big company
There was once a time when my search for a new phone would start (and likely finish) with a visit to Nokia.com. The Finnish company had the widest choice, the best designs, and the most respected...
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Jaikumar Ganesh

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ALS donations have increased quite a bit because of the ice water challenge. But all the folks doing it in California - Remember CA is under a severe drought. Good to know that CA is fining people wasting water in this challenge. There are other ways to donate.
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Yep 500$.. Its basically because of the multiplicative effect which is causing a lot of wastage
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Jaikumar Ganesh

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Apple and Privacy, Just like Google

One thing that really annoys me about Apple is how it is using its reality distortion field to twist the message about privacy. Only a week ago, Tim Cook said this:

”I’m speaking to you from Silicon Valley where some of the most prominent and successful companies have built their businesses by lulling their customers into complacency about their personal information. They’re gobbling up everything they can learn about you and trying to monetize it. We think that’s wrong. And it’s not the kind of company that Apple wants to be. So we don’t want your data. “

“We don’t think they’re worth have your email or your search history or now even your family photos data-mined and sold-off for God-knows-what advertising purpose.”

And then, at the WWDC Keynote, they announced the new Apple News app. What does this app do? Well… I quote from their product page:

”The stories you really care about. The more you read, the more personalized the News app becomes, refining the selection of stories delivered to your screen so they are relevant to you. Easily share articles with others and save them to read offline. News stays on top of the stories you’re interested in. So you can, too.”

So… how can Apple learn what it is that you are interested in, and deliver that information to you without tracking people?

Granted, at the keynote, Craig Federighi also displayed a slide pointing out the privacy features for Apple News. These included:

Anonymous
Not associated with Apple ID
Random identifier
Not linked to other Apple services
Not shared with third parties
You’re in control

Clearly pointing their fingers at Google.

First of all, this is a weird way of doing things. Not having the news targeting data linked to your Apple ID means that it can’t be used across devices. Your iPhone and your iPad won’t know which is which. And if you buy a new iPhone, you will have to teach your news app all over again from scratch.

What’s the point of that? That’s not a privacy issue. That’s just terrible UX. 

It’s also not linked to other Apple services, meaning that Apple won’t be able to show you news from where you are in Apple Maps, compared to your personal interests. That seems like a weird limitation, and again, poor UX.

Finally, we have the “Not shared with third parties”.

It’s so annoying. Why, because neither is Google
It’s the same thing. Google isn’t sharing anything. No advertiser sees any user data, ever.

It’s like when you advertise in a newspaper. You pay the newspaper to display the ad in the right section. But as an advertiser, you have no clue as to who it reaches. You just know it has been targeted right.

That’s how Google Adwords work.

More to the point, tools like Google Analytics work almost exactly like Apple News. It too is anonymous, not associated with people’s Google IDs, uses randomized identifiers, not linked to other Google services, nor is it shared with third parties. 

Granted, you can add aggregated demographic data to this as well, in which case it does link to Google Adwords, but it’s still anonymous, and you have no way to track that on an individual level.

I get so annoyed by this. Apple is promoting itself as the savior of privacy online, bashing Google and others with vaguely misleading statements along the way.

That said, there are genuine concerns about privacy as well.

For instance, there is a real problem around the whole industry of data brokers. These are companies who are buying and selling user data to the highest bidder, from anywhere. For instance, when you go into Target to buy a t-shirt, they will end up knowing your age, income, social status, your food preferences, and sometimes even your medical history. 

Similarly, when I then go into another store a week later, then they suddenly also know that I bought a T-shirt.

That’s not right. That’s terrible! It should be illegal for companies to buy/sell/share their data. (and indeed it is in my country).

If I go into a store, whatever I do and whatever I buy in this store should be kept between the store and me. It is a massive violation of trust when that store sells this information to others. 

That is a real privacy problem.

This also extends to websites. If I visit a newspaper, what I read should not be bought and sold by other companies. That is an interaction purely between me and the newspaper. 

The newspaper can target me all it wants based on the interaction that has taken place between us. But when I then visit another newspaper, they shouldn’t be allowed to know what topics of articles I read elsewhere. 

This is the whole concept of privacy. 

Apple is doing this right because what it tracks is kept within Apple. Which is good. And that is also how Google works. Whatever you do on Google, stays with Google.

But the rest of Apple PR bashing about privacy is just that, PR.

Look at Apple Music, which will be available on iPhone, iPad, Mac, Windows and Android. Here you can create your own playlists, follow artists, like, comment and share things.

The only way they can do that is by linking your actions to your Apple ID. How else would it be able to show you the playlist on your phone that you just created on your Mac? How else would it be able to keep track and notify you across devices when there is an update to something you engage with?

So, Apple is using your data, just like everyone else. As Apple says on their site (about Apple Music)

“Enjoy recommendations handpicked just for you or explore everything they find that’s new and noteworthy in the world of music. It’s all yours.”

“Even with a library this massive, finding the music you’re looking for is easy. The intelligent search engine remembers whether you’re looking in your local library or the Apple Music library, so you get results from the place you expect. You can also browse music you’ve looked for previously, and see what searches are trending.”

”Tell us what you like. Discover something you’ll love. When you tell us the genres and bands you’re into, we’ll bring you more suggestions from our experts who know and love music. They’re out at the big shows and the small gigs, combing scenes to bring you emerging artists and deep cuts, and creating playlists that feel like they’re coming from a friend who knows exactly what you want to hear.”

”The more you listen, the better we hear you. When we make recommendations, we consider what you tell us you like. Whether you love a song or not, your feedback helps our suggestions get better and better. But we also pay attention to what you actually play. So if you’re an EDM fan with a secret affinity for big band music, we’ll find you more stuff that swings. And drops the beat.”

How is this not exactly the same as what Google is doing with their services?

Oh, you say. But Apple isn’t using this to sell advertising. Really? 

Here is the description of ad targeting for the Apple News app:

”Monetization of Apple News Format content is simple with iAd, Apple’s advertising platform. When monetizing with iAd, you’ll have access to iAd’s segmentation capabilities, so your advertisers can reach just the right audience within your content. iAd targeting is accurate and scalable, and based on registration data from hundreds of millions of validated Apple users.”

And here is what Apple writes about iAds in Apple Music:

"Apple Music brings the world's largest community of music fans together all in one place with an expertly curated subscription music service, the world's most popular digital music store, and free streaming radio, including the world's first global live station, Beats 1, all in one app. iAd provides marketers with exclusive access to Apple Music listeners."

"Radio on Apple Music brings the best of iAd to the best in music programming: only iAd has the targeting capabilities borne from Apple user insights, and the integration into Apple hardware and software to bring commercial messages to life across iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Apple TV, as well as on Mac and PC."

"Advertisers can reach Apple Music listeners with audio and video ads while they're listening to Radio, and also while they're shopping, playing, and reading in hundreds of thousands of other apps."

And it will even be integrated into Apple Wallet:

iAd helps marketers push Offers to iPhone
Offers allow marketers to put customized, dynamic messages directly into the Wallet that's built into every iPhone - and accessible via Apple Watch.

Marketers can reach loyal customers with specific messages that reflect the customers' interests, or convert a new customer by presenting a reason to try something new.

Because iPhones are location-aware, so are Offers. Offers can be updated to present new messages dynamically, and also triggered with updates specific to a store location via iBeacon. Offers can also be targeted by age, gender, geography, or custom segments built by the marketer, and updated as often as required to keep messages fresh.

So, when Apple said that it was anonymous, not associated with Apple ID, uses a random identifier, nor linked to other Apple services, that apparently only applies to all the things that aren’t iAds. Because with iAds, they can accurately target your content to millions of Apple users.

Again, just like Google.

Add that Apple recently announced they will support ad blockers in Safari on the iPhone, thus blocking newspapers from earning money that way. While iAds does work in their own news app... well...

This is why I get so annoyed when I hear Apple’s PR machine talk about privacy. First, we have Tim Cook saying: “They’re gobbling up everything they can learn about you and trying to monetize it. We think that’s wrong. And it’s not the kind of company that Apple wants to be. So we don’t want your data.“

Then they launch three new services; Apple Waller, Apple Music and Apple News, both featuring individual targeting, tracking and tailoring ... and all directly integrated into iAds.

I call shenanigans. 

Both Apple and Google track what you do. Both companies use that information. And both companies that keep information within themselves, thus ensuring your privacy stays intact. 

There is nothing wrong with that. In fact, as they both show, doing this creates much better products for you and me. I have absolutely no problem with Apple using data about user interests and behavior to create better products, nor do I have anything against iAds. There are plenty of examples of where it creates opportunities for people that otherwise wouldn't exist. 

But, this whole debate is a distraction. Let’s instead focus on the much more important issue of data brokers, and how data from one site is sold or given to others, thus causing one company to know what you did in another store. 

That is the real issue we should be dealing with. Not how data is used between us and the individual companies that we have chosen to be a part of.
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Jaikumar Ganesh

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As messaging apps become a platform, how will Google solve the problem of lack of good messaging app ? Hangouts is not really setting the world on fire and most people I have talked to don't like it.
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Probably they should just start by thinking of setting up Hangouts as a platform. Right now they aren't thinking at all. :) GTalk was better than hangouts.
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Jaikumar Ganesh

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One of the things going on at Nextbit.

Samizdat is an exploration of programming language design in the context of a multi-device "personal cloud" operating system

So happy this is in open source

https://t.co/jsIHH5O8h2
samizdat - Samizdat Programming Language
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+Jasvir Nagra  You might be interested in this.
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Jaikumar Ganesh

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All it takes is just a little motivation 😆
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Live in the moment
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Work
Occupation
Technical Leader, Engineering Manager, Software Engineer - make the future better than the present.
Employment
  • Stealth Startup
    Engineering - Early engineer, present
  • Google
    Engineering Manager, Staff Software Engineer, Early Android engineer, 2006 - 2013
    Head of the Android Location Client team - helped launched a bunch of really cool context and location APIs - https://developers.google.com/live/shows/518756499. Manager of an excellent team and staff software engineer. Tech Lead of an experimental project between Chrome and Android, Head / tech lead (aka VP) of Android Bluetooth - responsible for all layers, interactions with chipset vendors to third party app developers , engineer on Android telephony team. One of the early engineers on the Android team and was involved in all releases from Jan 2007. Proud member of the team responsible for the explosive growth from the first device to the 900 million devices as it stands today.
  • Motorola
    Software Engineer, 2002 - 2004
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