Google’s I/O developer conference will kick off on May 7th

Google’s next I/O developer conference will be taking place at
the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, CA starting May
7th. The details were sussed out by a crafty Twitter user by
the name of Till Kottmann who used a shortcut accidentally
hidden in a puzzle
Google tweeted out this morning
to find
the relevant information
hidden in a snippet of JSON code.

Typically, the I/O puzzle takes a little longer to solve. This
year, Google tweeted out an enigmatic, 12-line block of tweet
with an accompanying URL that led to a video with
equally enigmatic voiced narration of said text
, put to a
string of cryptic images and some pleasant ambient music. It’s
not entirely clear what Google was going for here, but it’s
safe to say it was likely some form of programming puzzle that
most standard Twitter users would not have been able to easily
decode.

Luckily for us, however, users like Kottmann were able to spot
an earlier tweet from an now-deleted account called
@internaltest189 that contained the dates hidden in plain text:

While that certainly takes some of the fun out of Google’s neat
puzzle, it’s not a huge surprise that I/O is scheduled for May
7th to May 9th. The date usually comes out around this time of
the year and the conference has been typically schedule in the
first couple weeks of May; last year’s I/O
kicked off on May 8th
.

A lot has changed for Google
since last year’s conference
, when the company introduced
Android P in beta, overhauled Google News, and unveiled its

controversial Duplex AI project
, which lets an AI agent
masquerading as a human make phone calls and set appointments
on your behalf. The company has since vowed to be more
transparent around Duplex disclosure when talking with humans
who may not be aware they’re speaking to an AI agent. The
product is
now available to a small number of Pixel users
, but there
appears to be some vagueness around the disclosure process when
it’s being
handled in real time
.


Image: Google

Duplex will certainly be a hot topic at this year’s I/O, as
well as the standard updates to Google Lens, Maps, and News, as
well as the next version of Android. Hanging over the company’s
developer efforts this year, however, will be increased
scrutiny around Google’s plans to work with the US military,
following backlash over its
involvement with a Department of Defense drone project
it
has pledged to distance itself from, and the continued
murkiness around its plans to
launch a search product for the China market
.

We likely won’t hear much of anything about those topics at
I/O, but they’ll certainly be driving the conversation around
the company in the months leading up to the conference, which
has become just as much about the company’s responsible use of
sophisticated AI technology as it is about new products and
services.

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