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PRIVACY

Spain hosts world first ‘Google Glass’ operation

The world's first surgery using Google Glass, the tech giant's new 'wearable computer' in the form of glasses, will be carried out on Friday in Madrid with the help of experts in the USA.

Spain hosts world  first 'Google Glass' operation
The 'augmented reality' glasses allow remote experts to consult live on surgeries. Photo: Ole Spata/DPA/AFP

A 49-year-old man will enter the record books when he goes under the knife in Madrid on Friday for his chondrocyte transplant operation, a procedure used to treat cartilage injuries.

The surgery, to be carried out at the capital's CEMTRO Clinic, will be the first ever operation in the world involving the assistance of 'augmented-reality' glasses.

The operation will be monitored simultaneously in Stanford University in the United States where Dr. Hormero Rivas and his colleagues may consult with the Spanish team led by Dr. Pedro Guillen, according to Spanish national daily La Razón.

Internet viewers will also be able to follow proceedings in real time online thanks to Spanish Google Glass app development company Droiders.

Experts believe that Google's new technology will revolutionize the field of health.

The 'smart glasses' will allow doctors to instantly collect and record patient information, take high definition pictures and connect with other doctors.

They will enable remote experts to see patients through the eyes of the wearer to offer diagnosis, answer questions and exchange opinions.

However, critics have expressed concerns that the Google Glass technology could lead to invasions of privacy.

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BUSINESS

Google News to return to Spain after seven-year spat

Google announced Wednesday the reopening of its news service in Spain next year after the country amended a law that imposed fees on aggregators such as the US tech giant for using publishers’ content.

Google News to return to Spain after seven-year spat
Google argues its news site drives readers to Spanish newspaper and magazine websites and thus helps them generate advertising revenue.Photo: Kenzo TRIBOUILLARD / AFP

The service closed in Spain in December 2014 after legislation passed requiring web platforms such as Google and Facebook to pay publishers to reproduce content from other websites, including links to their articles that describe a story’s content.

But on Tuesday the Spanish government approved a European Union copyright law that allows third-party online news platforms to negotiate directly with content providers regarding fees.

This means Google no longer has to pay a fee to Spain’s entire media industry and can instead negotiate fees with individual publishers.

Writing in a company blog post on Wednesday, Google Spain country manager Fuencisla Clemares welcomed the government move and announced that as a result “Google News will soon be available once again in Spain”.

“The new copyright law allows Spanish media outlets — big and small — to make their own decisions about how their content can be discovered and how they want to make money with that content,” she added.

“Over the coming months, we will be working with publishers to reach agreements which cover their rights under the new law.”

News outlets struggling with dwindling print subscriptions have long seethed at the failure of Google particularly to pay them a cut of the millions it makes from ads displayed alongside news stories.

Google argues its news site drives readers to newspaper and magazine websites and thus helps them generate advertising revenue and find new subscribers.

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