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ATAP goes AWOL at Google I/O

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Matt Ouellette
May 18, 2017 21:00
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p For the last few years, Google’s skunkworks ATAP unit always held its own keynote at I/O, Google’s flagship developer conference.

Often, this was where Google would show off its most experimental and interesting projects — and sometimes, this ATAP keynote was actually more fun than the larger, flashier I/O keynotes.

This year, however, ATAP is nowhere to be found on the I/O schedule.

According to a report from Business Insider earlier this week, the ATAP team’s mission changed after its former lead Regina Dugan decamped to Facebook, where she held court at that company’s F8 conference only a few weeks ago.

That probably explains its absence at I/O, too.

Unlike X, Google’s far more secretive “moonshot” division, ATAP always used I/O to show off its latest prototypes, whether those were miniaturized radar sensors for gesture detection, jackets with embedded sensors (which Levi’s has now turned into a product), Project Ara (the modularized smart phone that was eventually cancelled) or a new system for authenticating users without passwords.

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Matt Ouellette
May 18, 2017 21:00
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