Google Knows All?

Last weekend the missus and I were in Brandon, Florida. We were searching for a restaurant, in vain, because Google Maps provided outdated information, specifically that the highly-rated restaurant was no longer in business. We had just gone a side street, stopped at where the restaurant should have been, then resumed our search, going back down that same side street.

Evidently just minutes earlier a Ferrari had collided with a large pickup truck, resulting in the left front tire of the truck being parked in the center of the Ferrari’s hood.

With my new and faithful Droid in hand, I managed to snap this photo as we drove by:



The police hadn’t yet arrived, but several people were already taking photos/videos, and I commented to the missus that there would probably be video on YouTube that night. Sure enough, one was posted the next day:

It even made the Today show:

The episode became even more surreal. I emailed the photo from my phone to my gmail account, and was quite surprised by the associated ads:

Does Google have photo recognition? How can it have “stale” information about restaurants, but be able to determine that the photo is of a car? And of a luxury car, that is, one that would be associated with Lexus, Lincoln and Acura?


I think I know what actually happened. On another computer, while logged into Google, I searched YouTube for “Ferrari truck”, and Google associated that search with my profile, thus resulting in the advertisements for luxury cars.

Projects on Hold

Because of the various demands of my life, my projects are on hold temporarily. Among the demands: my significant other being naive enough to think, and embark, on living with me; work; changing my web site from Ruby-generated HTML to Rails; and switching from Fedora to Ubuntu/Mint, as well as switching from my old faithful desktop machine to a newer, slicker laptop.

Project G

Most of my projects are on hold while I focus on the newest one, Project G. It’s reaching the plateau point, where the core functionality is complete, although some of it is not performing as well as I’d like. I’m already planning huge changes for version 2. Hopefully version 1 will be available later this year; the main task now is adding content to it, as opposed to code.