Despite being Mother’s Day, the weekend proved to be a pretty active one, and it’s mainly thanks to Elon Musk.
You know Musk from such hits as Tesla and The Boring Company. Lately, he’s been in the news cycle with his other company, SpaceX, and cryptocurrency Dogecoin. He’s also been featured in headlines thanks to his hosting gig on Saturday Night Live which aired Saturday night.
What do those latter three associations with Musk have in common? Two things: the fact he now has hosting SNL under his belt and the recent announcement that SpaceX will launch a Dogecoin-purchased satellite to the moon.
On the SNL front, he did a relatively good job, given the fact he’s not an actor. I included a couple of skits I enjoyed below, including one with Pete Davidson’s character Chad who is tasked with restoring oxygen to a hub on Mars.
The other side of the coin (or Dogecoin, I should say) is far more interesting and hilarious. According to SpaceX, the DOGE-1 satellite will be used to record “lunar-spatial intelligence” using a series of technologies onboard. Geometric Energy Corporation will be paying for the endeavor all through Dogecoin, and it’s set to launch with the Falcon 9 rocket in Q1 2022.
With the announcement, Musk highlighted the fact that this will be the first time cryptocurrency is used for a space mission, along with the fact it’ll be the first time a meme has reached the solar system. It’s an absolutely ridiculous feat, one that only Musk could ever pull off.
Welcome to the future, I suppose.
Clubhouse is now available on Android… sort of
I couldn’t tell you why it took this long, but the social audio app Clubhouse is now available on Android, well over a year since the iOS counterpart launched.
But it’s not totally available just yet. It seems that the Android app is still prone to bugs and unexpected occurrences, so Clubhouse will be using an invite system to give users access. Think of it as a beta.
Despite the limited access, it’s no doubt that this has been a long time coming, and it’s a good thing it’s happening now and not later down the road. Clubhouse has blown up over the past year, so much so that other platforms like Twitter and Discord have begun adding their own audio-only features to their apps. It’s no secret clubhouse is incredibly influential, so if it doesn’t wanna be crushed by competition, expanding to Android was a necessity that should’ve happened a while ago.
Zoom on iPad can now keep your camera live while multitasking
Over the past year, if you’re like me and have made Zoom calls on your iPad, you’ve probably noticed that when you try to multitask, your camera shuts off. That’s because Zoom didn’t have access to Apple’s under-the-hood API that FaceTime uses which lets you keep an app’s camera and mic live while another app is active.
That changes with the latest update for Zoom (via 9to5Mac). Behind closed doors, Apple has given Zoom permission to use a specific API called “com.apple.developer.avfoundation.multitasking-camera-access”. If an app gets access to it, it can keep your camera live while in Split View or multitasking in other ways.
If you’re hoping this means you can add the same functionality to your apps, don’t even think about it. Apple only gives this type of permission to those it deems worthy, so unless you’re one of the big guys, you’ll have to limit your users to keeping your app live all the time for the camera to work during video calls.
Maybe one day this will change. We’ll have to wait to see.
Google signals a caring attitude toward Wear OS with introduction of Gboard
Google is definitely hinting that it cares about Wear OS, despite seemingly not caring about it at all for years. Late last week, the company introduced a major new app for the platform: Gboard. It replaces the old Google Keyboard experience and should help make typing on your wrist easier.
Smart suggestions, swipe tying, emojis, voice input, and more are all onboard. It replicates an experience users on Android and iOS have had for years, all while optimizing the experience for smaller displays.
Whether this is evidence that Google actually cares about Wear OS is unclear. At the end of a support blog entry, the company does say it “can’t wait” to share what’s in store for Wear OS in 2021, so there’s a chance they’ll actually make meaningful improvements and attempt to close the quality gap between it and Apple’s wearOS which remains the greatest smartwatch OS on the market.
If you own a Wear OS watch, you should be able to update your keyboard either through the Play Store or System Updates.