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<hat type="tin-foil" mode="on">

What does Google have from serving us with Google Fonts?

Typical Google could start sending up custom JavaScript from JavaScript repository. But what about fonts? What does Google get from it?
You can't tell me they just have well-doing spree and are sharing to help. Corporations are always seeing buck in everything.
Is it about marketing and brand recognition?

Is there something that we are sending from our websites that we shouldn't? Is there something I should know about?

On YouTube, "just clicks" turns to "psychological pattern". Does serving Google AJAX/Fonts have any greater stuff we should know about?

Edited by Aeonix

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  • 1
    Dani 1,638   8 Months Ago

    Google offers a lot of free functionality ... such as a CDN to serve jQuery, Google fonts, reCaptcha, Analytics, DFP, etc. A lot of these features are designed to create google's vision of what the web should be like, accessibility, UX, etc. Does google data mine? Absolutely. Does that mean … Read More

  • You need to re-calibrate your tinfoil hat. I don't demand much in this world, but I do demand consistency. For the record, I LOVE discussing nefarious plots, conspiracies, and "what if" doom and gloom tinfoil hat achieve-world-domination-through-fonts theories. Some people would write you off as a lunatic for worrying about … Read More

  • To all, Aeonix and I PM'd and it's clear that he feels that my smart-ass replies are hijacking his threads, which he wants to be taken seriously. I've been trying to mix some levity in while still actually making some point at least somewhat related to the topic. Anyway, they're … Read More

  • PM sent. It's over. Last post wasn't meant as offensive. Like I said, now bowing out. This is the last, very last time I'll post in any of your threads, guaranteed. Read More

  • 2
    diafol 3,669   8 Months Ago

    Not a person to shy away from sticking his nose in where it doesn't belong, but I'd just like to say, IMO - DW is an open forum for members - everybody is allowed to post, as long as the post is relevant and not abusive. This isn't SO. Discussion … Read More

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Google offers a lot of free functionality ... such as a CDN to serve jQuery, Google fonts, reCaptcha, Analytics, DFP, etc.

A lot of these features are designed to create google's vision of what the web should be like, accessibility, UX, etc.

Does google data mine? Absolutely. Does that mean you shouldn't use it? Not in my book. Other opinions may vary.

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If you don't like how Google does things then don't use the services it offers. Here's the thing, you may well find that isn't totally straightforward. Which is not the same as being impossible, or anything like it. Nor does it mean the alternative you opt for is any less problematical.

What Google, and others, offer at the end of the day is a trade off of usability and functionality over privacy. Personally, as someone who is a 25 year veteran as far as security and privacy issues are concerned, I'd rather deal with Google which is fairly up front about what data it collects and what it does with it, than myriad alternatives which may well not be.

You can take back a certain amount of control by taking care regarding the browser client you use, the tracking/ad blocker extensions you run and how you connect to the Internet (with broadband speeds in the land of fantasy now, you can easily afford to sacrifice a little of it by making use of multiple VPNs across different countries for example.)

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Consider also that you could serve Google Fonts from your web server, just download them and set the paths in the CSS file.

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Consider also that you could serve Google Fonts from your web server, just download them and set the paths in the CSS file.

It's not like I'm afraid of Google. If they did things really wrong, they would lose trust of millions of developers. I'm talking more about the darkest real possibilities.

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Well, that's not what I meant. Okay, another way: "I'm talking more about the darkest real possibilities that Google would try to use, without possible knowing of outside world.".

What realistic crazyness could they obtain legally. I know they can run all types of code. But that's obvious and they wouldn't do that.

On top of it, Google embedding viruses to obtain control of computers it's rather unrealistic. Google wouldn't go that far. I have something more riskless in mind. Something that could be crafted from data they legally obtain.

For example clicking on three videos is data that they legally obtain. The darkest real possibility is that they create A.I. which simulates your psychology (they already have computers detecting human mood, age and gender). It is realistic, and nobody can really point out on it, because it's legal, they don't inject or break anything, and they still provide you with videos that you clicked on.

I'm seeking more for things like this. Something weird that they could do with this data, without fighting the law.

Once again, it's not about "Google so bad", it's more like "What is the risk that I have to deal with, when you put your tinfoil hat on?".
I won't upload personal pictures to Google because NSA. You can do a lot of people's images, documents and voice-recordings.
What could you do with "requesting a font" that isn't infected or anything? Is there some analytical potential? I'd rather download fonts than otherwise if it means risking privacy of users.

Edited by Aeonix

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You need to re-calibrate your tinfoil hat. I don't demand much in this world, but I do demand consistency. For the record, I LOVE discussing nefarious plots, conspiracies, and "what if" doom and gloom tinfoil hat achieve-world-domination-through-fonts theories. Some people would write you off as a lunatic for worrying about people influencing other people using fonts, but I won't. I'd be contradicting this post.

But it is absolutely imperative that there is some consistency in the premises. I can abide with the LAPD brilliantly framing OJ Simpson for murder and I can abide with the LAPD incompetently missing key evidence, but I cannot handle the LAPD incompetently not collecting the evidence that they brilliantly planted. It would be like believing that The Terminator was willing to go back in time and brutally and unflinchingly kill every innocent Sarah Connor in existence just to get the one he cared about, but would feel bad for the kid whose toy he crushed while parking his vehicle on the way to commit murder. These are inconsistent behaviors for the personalities/programs involved. Time travel? Fine. Terminator having feelings? Nope.

Similarly, you are willing to put on a tinfoil hat and explore the "darkest" things that Google might do and ascribing to them willingness to brainwash us by "stimulating our psychology" with fonts, videos, etc. in order to get billions of dollars, world domination, complete control of our emotions, etc., etc., yet you think such people would be worried about breaking the law and breaking the trust and for some reason would never stoop to injecting malware in these fonts. Can we not assume that if the Google top brass oligarchy were ambitious and powerful and nefarious enough to do whatever dark thing they are trying to do that requires a tinfoil hat, they would not be risk-averse, nor would they let a little thing like the law, which is for the little people and exists solely to be wielded by powerful folks like them to smack down any of the little people who dare to complain or who get in their way, stop them?

Malicious fonts, changing the law, breaking the law, assassins, sharks with laser beams, it's all fair game for billionaires striving to enslave the world.

Edited by AssertNull: grammar

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To all, Aeonix and I PM'd and it's clear that he feels that my smart-ass replies are hijacking his threads, which he wants to be taken seriously. I've been trying to mix some levity in while still actually making some point at least somewhat related to the topic. Anyway, they're his threads and he wants them to go in a more technical direction. I can, do, and will respect that.

Bowing out.

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You know, the PMs were themed behind this exact reason. You misunderstanding me. You told me you'd respect it, seems you missed the point.

(this starts turning in a drama)

Edited by Aeonix

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PM sent. It's over. Last post wasn't meant as offensive. Like I said, now bowing out. This is the last, very last time I'll post in any of your threads, guaranteed.

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Not a person to shy away from sticking his nose in where it doesn't belong, but I'd just like to say, IMO - DW is an open forum for members - everybody is allowed to post, as long as the post is relevant and not abusive. This isn't SO. Discussion can only happen if contributors decide to contribute. Thread starters do not "own" a thread - once created, they have a life of their own. Posts that do not meet an exact need can be ignored or commented upon. Too often we hear thread starters "complaining" that their question / query etc isn't answered exactly as requested (not pointing fingers at anybody here). This sense of entitlement is just plain wrong.

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I wonder if he send you any "information" from his side. Well, that sucks. Had hopes. I guess it's just another one of those. Bye.

Edited by Aeonix

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For what it's worth, I thought that this had the makings of a really interesting thread. Let's face it, the root post was not overly serious in construction or intent (based upon it starting with a tinfoil hat wearing declaration) nor was it precise in what it expected the anwers to be. In other words it was loosely constructed enough for the membership to run with along various tangents. If the OP had a different intent then the question could have been constructed differently. My reply shows the direction I saw it heading in, and this was different to others in the thread. I agree with Diafol about thread ownership, by the way. This is something we all can get a little too precious over, when really we should treat it as being something that is largely out of our control once set free upon the membership.

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This isn't SO. Discussion can only happen if contributors decide to contribute. Thread starters do not "own" a thread - once created, they have a life of their own.

I very much so agree with this.

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Consider also that you could serve Google Fonts from your web server, just download them and set the paths in the CSS file.

This isn't really ideal if using common Google Fonts, such as Open Sans, which we use here on DaniWeb. It's one of the most common Google Fonts, and therefore using a CDN where the odds are significant that the end-user has already downloaded it before arriving at your website are high. I agree there's no advantage to using a CDN if using an obscure font, unless bandwidth is a huge concern for you I guess. It's a static file which web servers can serve up pretty speedily.

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