An unofficial blog that watches Google's attempts to move your operating system online since 2005. Not affiliated with Google.

Send your tips to gostips@gmail.com .

April 30, 2006

Steve Jobs: Build Your Dreams

A great man with an extraordinary life, the man who invented* the personal computer - ladies and gentlemen, Steve Jobs, CEO at Apple Computers:



The video is from Stanford Graduate Commencement address delivered by Steve Jobs on June 12, 2005. Some key quotes:

"If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you'll most certainly be right."

"Death is the destination we all share, no one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be because death is very likely the single best invention of life."

"Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure - these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart."

"The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it."

* Steve Jobs co-founded Apple with Steve Wozniak in 1976, and a year later launched the Apple II - the first desktop computer to have a built-in keyboard, built-in sound and that could produce color graphics when hooked to a color television.

Download Google Videos As AVI Files

Update (Sept. 2007): This doesn't work anymore, but you can still download the videos as MP4 by clicking on "Download for Video iPod/Sony PSP". After Google acquired YouTube, Google Video started to remove features and to morph into a video search engine.

If you want to save videos from Google Video in Windows and Mac OSX, you only have the option to download them as MP4 files, in a lower quality that's suitable for the iPod and PSP. Google removed the option to save the videos in a higher quality after closing the video store and discontinuing Google Video Player. But you can still save the videos as AVI files using a bookmarklet (a bookmark that only contains JavaScript code), as described below.

Make sure the link toolbar is visible in your browser. You can enable it if you go to the View menu in your browser, click on Toolbars and check:
* Bookmarks Toolbar in Firefox
* Personal Bar in Opera
* Links in Internet Explorer


For Firefox and Opera, drag and drop the link below to the toolbar. For Internet Explorer, right-click on the link, select "Add to Favorites", ignore the security warning and choose "Links" from the list of folders (Internet Explorer no longer supports dragging bookmarklets).

Download Google Video

The link toolbar should look like this:


Next time when you see a video you like on Google Video, click on the bookmarklet and save the video. Note that this only works for videos hosted at Google Video, not for YouTube or other third-party sites that are available from Google Video.


Because Google adds a non-standard header to the videos, not all players can render them. Some good applications that ignore the headers and play Google videos are Media Player Classic (Windows), VideoLan (Windows/Mac/Linux), MPlayer (Windows/Mac/Linux). If you want to remove the special header, so you can play the videos with Windows Media Player, try this small tool.

Amazon Drops Google From A9 And Alexa

A9 (Amazon's search engine) and Alexa (online traffic monitoring service) have replaced Google as default search engine with Windows Live Search. There's no official information about this change, but this is the first major success for the new Windows Live Search, the replacement for MSN Search. A9 search engine powers web search at Amazon.com and IMDB.com.

New Google Test: More From The Top Result

Google tests another interface for search results. You can already see for some top results a list of three or four important pages from that site.

In this experiment, Google shows the links on separated lines and displays the URL the same way it does for standard results. Google knows that 62 percent of search users click on a link within the first results' page and most only on the top result.

Disclaimer: the line "Try your search on Yahoo, Ask, ..." was generated by a Firefox extension - CustomizeGoogle.

Each Newspaper Will Have A Software To Read It

Why go to nytimes.com to read the latest news from New York Times when you can install a simple program that lets you view the news on your desktop? That's what Microsoft must have said to the New York Times board to convince them they need Times Reader, a PC-based software application for news distribution.

Overall, the Times Reader enhances the onscreen reading experience through Windows Presentation Foundation, Microsoft'’s advanced display technology in Windows Vista. The text in Times Reader is displayed in columns and formats to fit the size and layout of any computer screen and enables readers to customize the display according to personal preferences, such as font size and content relevance. The Times Reader also uses the same font styles as the printed newspaper, extending the strong brand identity of The New York Times.

It's really strange to see a high-tech company like Microsoft creating a software that essentially delivers the same content that can be found on a site. People can customize a site using custom stylesheets, Greasemonkey scripts and New York Times could have let the users change the font size or the layout.

And why creating a software that displays news from one source? It's like developing a RSS Reader that reads just one feed. The other papers will want their own paper-like viewer and Microsoft will replicate Times Reader instead of developing some widgets that could be integrated in Vista Sidebar.

It's ironic to see applications like Microsoft Word moving online (Writely, Office Live), while New York Times' site moves offline.

April 29, 2006

Yahoo Mail Beta vs. Gmail

Google Operating System got Yahoo Mail out of beta for thousands of Yahoo users. Their opinions aren't too favorable to the new webmail application.

"I tried the new Yahoo Mail Beta and is horrible slow, with bloated interface, obtrusive ads, I much prefer Gmail which is elegant, simple, fast, and more importantly it does not get in your way."

"I prefer Yahoo Beta to the folderless Gmail structure. "

"I agree with everyone about slowness. Even more to the point is its freakish desire to emulate a basic software email client. I don't want that for my webmail. That's why Gmail is brilliant, it's webmail and it's not like an average client (Outlook, Thunderbird, etc.)."

"Wow. Yahoo has had Oddpost for 2 years now and after the long wait, we get this? This is very disapointing. The user interface looks like a bad version of Outlook Express. Gmail and Google Calendar eats Yahoo's lunch..AND dinner."

You are free to try Yahoo Mail Beta and tell what you think.

Also read:
5 ways to check Gmail faster
Yahoo Mail Beta review

Google Statistical Machine Translation Is Live

Automatic translation between human languages was one of the earliest applications suggested for digital computers, but it wasn't easy to do it. Machine translation generally uses natural language processing and tries to define rules for fixed constructions. The original text is encoded in a symbolic representation from which the translated text is derived.

Google developed a different kind of machine translation using a statistical approach. "We feed the computer with billions of words of text, both monolingual text in the target language, and aligned text consisting of examples of human translations between the languages. We then apply statistical learning techniques to build a translation model." explains

Opera 9 - Discover A New World



Opera 9, the new version of the most underrated browser, brings a fresh look and more goodies than anyone would expect.

Opera Widgets

Widgets are small web applications that run directly on a user’s desktop. They can show stock information, weather reports, news headlines, calendars, latest posts from your favorite blog, games. They live outside Opera's window, but are active only when Opera is running. They are similar to Google Desktop's panels, but Opera widgets don't clutter your desktop: they are visible only when you want to. Just press F6 in Opera and discover a new world.

What you see in the screenshot are:
* KnowledgeMate, a widget that searches Google, Wikipedia and Yahoo News
* Pandora - the radio that plays your favourite music in a mini version
* a clock and a slick calendar
* a slideshow with pictures from Opera Community
* latest posts from Google Operating System

Customize any page

Remove images from pages, block ads, choose if you want cookes from a site, enable or disable JavaScript for a site, enable Java, SVG or other plugins only for the sites you trust. If you find Flash ads from a site obtrusive, you can disable them and you'll never see them again in Opera.

BitTorrent download

You don't need a BitTorrent application if you have Opera 9. You can download torrents like any other file, you can even search for BitTorrent files from the toolbar.




Thumbnail preview for tabs

If you don't remember what site is in each tab, you can hover on the title and see the URL, a thumbnail and the complete title.

Better rich-text editor

You can edit your Blogger posts like you do in Firefox or Explorer, you can use your favourite webmail site to write mails with custom colors, fonts, lists and links.

Your favorite Firefox features

Search engines are editable, you can add a search engine from any searchbox. Opera has about:config, to change your preferences faster. View the source of any page using the new source viewer that has a compact look.

For geeks only

Opera 9 adds support for: CSS 3 (not complete), XSLT 1.0, XPath 1.0, Web Forms 2.0, SVG 1.1. Opera 9 passes Acid 2 test.

Download Opera 9 Beta

Related:
Make Gmail Chat work with Opera 9

Google News Autocomplete

If you enjoy Google Suggest, the feature that autocompletes your query with the most frequent expressions that have been searched, it's a good thing to know that Google News has its own suggest feature. And if Google Suggest is interesting but not very useful most of the times, Google News Suggest will create a list of expressions from the most important recent news that match what you've typed.

You type [michael] (or only the first three letters) and you see the most important Michaels in the news. Select [Michael Jackson] and you'll see keywords from recent news that involved the pop star.

April 28, 2006

Google Reader Has Video Player

Google Reader included the support for videos published as Flash files. You can now track videos from Google Video and YouTube using Google Reader: view
popular videos from Google Video,
most discussed video this month on YouTube,
videos tagged Google on YouTube,
or search results for iPod from Google Video.

While viewing this playlists, you'll notice the new look for YouTube player, that now includes volume control.

Test Internet Explorer 7 Without Installing It

To run Internet Explorer 7, you need Windows XP SP2.

Step 1

Download Internet Explorer 7 (14.8 MB). You could also download IE7 from File Hippo.

Step 2

Download the IE7 Standalone archive created by Jon Galloway.

Step 3

Create a new folder IE7 in Program Files, copy the IE7 setup file and extract the files from the archive downloaded at Step 2.

Step 4

Run the file IE7 Standalone Setup.bat and click OK to install xmllitesetup.exe, an update necessary so that IE7 has tabs.

Step 5

Create a shortcut on the desktop to the file IE7.bat. Change the icon of the shortcut to one from IE7's iexplore.exe.


Now you have a standalone Internet Explorer 7 that runs along with Internet Explorer 6. You can launch IE7 from the shortcut you've created on the desktop. Note that not all the features will work well and this standalone installation is recommended only for developers that want to test IE7, but also need Internet Explorer 6.

More about this setup from Jon Galloway.

Related:
Internet Explorer 7 Review

Google vs Yahoo Spam Battle


If you want to see how good a search engine deals with spam, one idea would be to search for the most spammed keywords. I selected three pharmaceutical keywords.

hydrocodone [orally active narcotic analgesic and antitussive]
Google: results #7, #8, #10 are spam pages
Yahoo: results #1, #7, #8, #10 use sneaky redirects; result #3, #4, #5, #6 are duplicate and uninformative


valium [a tranquilizer used to relieve anxiety and relax muscles]
Google: results #4, #8, #9, #10 use sneaky redirects and keyword stuffing
Yahoo: results #1, #4, #5, #6, #7, #8, #9, #10; result #2 is a site generated automatically, that uses expressions like "Is valium is for valium i was recently announced valium"; result #3 is uninformative

One page even disguised as an online poll:

Do you want?
1. cheap valium
2. buy valium online
3. discount valium


cialis [drug used to treat male erectile dysfunction]
Google: results #5 use sneaky redirects; result #3, #7, #10 are blank or nonexistent pages
Yahoo: results #7, #9 use sneaky redirects

Google wins for hydrocodone and valium, while Yahoo wins for cialis. It's clear, though, that Google puts more effort in detecting and removing spam pages from the index.

How To Recover Data From A Hard Drive

TechRepublic has updated a collection of 200 tips for repairing a faulty hard drive.

"One trick I have learned as a technician, when the problem is data-read errors off the platters themselves, is to freeze the hard drive overnight."

"I've run into this scenario numerous times. One time it involved the main Novell SYS volume on our HP File Server. I was really sweating as the server would not boot. I took the drive out and put it in a freezer for 30 minutes. I then reinstalled it into the file server and Presto! I was up and running. Needless to say, I quickly mirrored the drive onto another and got rid of the bad drive."

"If you are willing to destroy the disk and try to get some data off the drive, there is a quick hack available. Place the drive in a static-free bag, then place the drive and static-free bag into a ziplock bag to seal out moisture. Place this into a freezer turned to as low as possible for 24 hours. After 24 hours, pull the drive out and immediately put it into a computer (the faster the better) that boots to a floppy and has another hard drive to transfer data to. If the drive wasn't damaged too much previously, you should be able to pull some data off before the metal of the drive heats up and starts destroying the data storage platters. You can repeat the process only if you shut down almost immediately and go through the 24 hour freeze process again. Chances are that the first time attempt will be the only chance to recover data."

Related:
EBCD: System recovery boot CD
TestDisk: Recover lost partitions
Burn a Windows Live CD with system recovery software preinstalled

Sitemaps Shows Google Penalties For Your Site

Now that everyone can use Google Sitemaps, Google decided to transform Sitemaps into webmaster's corner. Matt Cutts informs that webmasters who use Sitemaps will get detailed information about penalties for their site. If your site doesn't follow Google's guidelines and uses hidden text, cloaking, doorway pages or sneaky redirects, it may be removed from the index. If you use Google Sitemaps, Google will confirm the penalty and offer you a reinclusion request specifically for that site.

Not everyone will get information about Google's penalties.

If the webspam team detects a spammer that is creating dozens or hundreds of sites with doorway pages followed by a sneaky redirect, there’s no reason that we’d want the spammer to realize that we’d caught those pages. So Google clearly shouldn’t contact every site that is penalized–it would tip off spammers that they’d been caught, and then the spammers would start over and try to be sneakier next time.

Everyone Can Use Google Sitemaps

Google introduced a new type of verification for Google Sitemaps: insert a meta tag in to the homepage of your site. The previous method (uploading a file to the server root) didn't work for Blogger users that host their blogs on BlogSpot.com.

You don't have to submit a sitemap for your site to use Google Sitemaps. If you prove you're the owner of the site (using the methods above), you can find interesting information: the top search queries - the queries that most often return pages from your site, top search query clicks - the top queries that direct traffic to your site, crawl statistics, PageRank distribution, crawl errors (this is a good way to detect bad links, HTTP errors).

If you have a blog on Blogger and can't host a sitemap for your blog, you can just submit your blog's feed to Google Sitemaps: http://yourblog.blogspot.com/atom.xml.

A simple way to create a sitemap for your site online is using ROR Sitemap Generator. If you want to have a sitemap that updates dynamically, you have to install a web application on your server (PHP, ASP, ColdFusion).

April 27, 2006

Yahoo Homepage In Two Flavors

The newest design experiment for Yahoo homepage allows users to choose between two different layouts: a wide layout and a narrow layout.

Wide Yahoo homepage



Narrow Yahoo homepage



The new interface puts the accent on Yahoo search box, My Yahoo, Yahoo Mail and Yahoo News.

Previous design changes:
New Yahoo homepage (February)
Another possibly new Yahoo homepage (March)

First Google Logo

Google's first name was BackRub, back when the search engine lived on Stanford's servers and could be found at backrub.stanford.edu. BackRub's logo was a scan of Larry Page's hand.

From BackRub's FAQ:
Your logo is upside down: Why is the light source obviously below the image? It looks quite unnatural...

The logo is simply a scan of my hand, from a flatbed scanner converted to black and white. The back in the picture is the scanner cover, and the shadows are from the scanner light.

SketchUp Is Free

Google did it with Picasa, Urchin, Keyhole. Now SketchUp, a 3D modeling program bought by Google last month, is free for personal use and you can download it if you have a decent PC with Windows 2000 or XP. Google promises to come up with a Mac version for SketchUp soon.

The nice thing about SketchUp is that it allows you to create 3D models with simple drag and drop operations. You don't have to read the manuals, it's that easy to use. You can view geo-referenced 3D models in Google Earth and upload them in Google 3D Warehouse. You can already see interesting buildings in Google 3D Warehouse: Rose Bowl Stadium, Taj Mahal, Empire State Building or Apple Campus (you can see it in the screenshot).

April 26, 2006

Google Maps Mobile


Launched last year in November as Google Local Mobile, the map service was enhanced and got a new name. If you go to www.google.com/gmm on your mobile phone, you can try Google Maps Mobile: get directions, find local businesses, view maps and satellite imagery.

The list of supported mobile phones is very big and includes: color BlackBerry devices, Nokia 6230i, Nokia 6600, Samsung SGH series, Sony Ericsson K750i, Sony Ericsson P900. Google Maps Mobile is a Java midlet that connects to Internet and displays maps as JPEG images.

If you want to test drive Google Maps Mobile, go to this page (requires Java) and try the interactive demo.

Related:
Google Maps for the rest of the world

Guge


It's spring, everything is growing, having thriving vitality

In this sowing season, Google takes the name Valley (Grain) Song. Using the grain as a song, it is a song of sowing and expectation. It's also a song of harvesting and joy.

We hope that Guge will integrate global information for everybody, so that everyone can have access to it and will benefit.

Welcome to Guge. Let's search for you. Let's harvest for you.

Guge is the new name Google wants to be known in China. Google created a Flash video to illustrate the metaphoric concept of search using harvesting.

We see each website as a voter, voting for one another. All these search results are ranking completely according to the voting, because we believe that everybody is equal in front of the information. Only the information voted by everybody on the internettrustfulable and valuable.

It's surprising to see Google saying "everybody is equal in front of the information" when they are censoring the web search in China. What you can see here is the approximate translation of the Chinese text.

Via Google Blogoscoped.

Google Homepage Promotes Firefox

If you are in the US and you use Internet Explorer, Google homepage will tell you to switch to Firefox. And while you switch to Firefox, you'll also get Google Toolbar.

If you aren't in the US, and you want to see the first cluttered Google homepage, use this free proxy while browsing with Internet Explorer.

If you have Internet Explorer 7, Google homepage is even uglier.

I thought Google.com should be simple, as Marissa Mayer once said: "It's simple, it's elegant, you can slip it in your pocket, but it's got the great doodad when you need it."

Related:
Reduce memory usage in Firefox
How much money made Mozilla from Google in 2005?

April 25, 2006

Google Mobile Search Used Mostly To Find Porn

Google released some interesting data about Google mobile search:

1. the top five Google mobile search topics are: porn, entertainment, telecom, local services and games.
2. one in five people searches for porn.
3. one in five people enters web addresses in Google search box, using Google as a mobile proxy.
4. the number of characters used in a typical Google cell phone search query is almost the same as in searches from PCs.
5. it takes one minute, on average, to enter a search term and get results.

The study has been conducted on a million Google mobile phone queries and it will be presented tomorrow at the CHI 2006 conference in Montreal.

Google And Yahoo Show More Ads

A ComScore qSearch study shows that in March 2006, Yahoo increased the proportion of searches that contain ads with 30 percent: 59.7 percent of searches display sponsored listings. Google showed ads on 52.9 percent of searches, up 50 percent from a year ago.

Both Yahoo and Google increased the clickthrough rate for ads: Yahoo from 9.5% to 11.4%, while Google increased the clickthrough rate from 9.7% to 11.8%.

If so many people click on the ads from SERPs, does this mean they don't find relevant pages in the organic results or they click on the first link on the page, even if it's a sponsored result? I think Google shouldn't place any ad in front of the organic results, not even for commercial queries.

Google Control Panel

You are invited to Googleplex to visit Google playground and you are given read-only access to all the data gathered by Googlebot (and other Google bots). You can write programs that manipulate the data, you can view the most visited sites and the most frequent queries, the most influential sites and the queries for which these sites rank well. What would you do with all that power?

I would:
* list the most visited websites that used to be updated once a day, but haven't been updated for many months. I would like to see archive sites.
* list the top expressions used in the anchors to link to a certain site.
* create an interface that allows you to start with a site and then go to the most visited external link (in Google). The journey continues until a threshold is reached.
* define the distance between two sites: how many links do you have to click from a page of site A to go to a page from site B?
* start with a query and see how people modify that query to obtain better results.
* list the sites that deliver the most clicked news stories in Google News.
* list the most used words in a language.
* describe a site using vocabulary richness: how many different words use BBC News or MySpace?
* list the results for a query not with respect to a page relevancy, but with respect to a site relevancy. Who is more entitled to talk about Sony Ericsson K800i: BBC News or a MobileReviews.com?
* what do people that use OS2, BeOS or Amiga are searching for?
* discover unknown parts of the web: what sites have no backlinks?
* create a verbose interface for Google that explains why a page was included in the results.

April 24, 2006

Google Interface Experiments

Google explains the latest UI experiments:
From time to time, we run live experiments on Google — tests visible to a relatively few people -- to discover better ways to search. We do this because there’s no good substitute for understanding how real people, in real-world situations, actually operate. Theories are fine, but "improving the user experience" really happens best when we understand what people do online.

So to learn more, we sometimes randomly select a group of people to see a possible improvement to search options. Or we may select a group of people and try out a new element while they're searching. If you ever wonder why your Google site looks slightly different from that of the person sitting next to you, this is why.


This is the first time Google stops to explain users their interface tests.

More details:
Extended snippets
Try new Google design
Other version of the design changes

Google Maps For The Rest Of The World

Google Maps, that now includes the old Google Local, will increase the coverage to Europe. You can already see satellite images from Holland, Germany, France, Spain, Portugal and get directions in local languages. Google updated the satellite data used for Google Maps so it now has the updates recently made to Google Earth.

Although the maps are incomplete, so you may sometimes get lost, it's interesting to see Google expanding Google Maps ahead of the competition. It will be the first time since Google translated the search interface when Google will make a huge impact on people's lives. People will be able to explore the world and their neighborhood using natural language.

More at: Google Blogoscoped Forum.

Microsoft Hires Ask.com CEO

Steve Berkowitz, CEO of Ask.com, has been hired by Microsoft to head MSN's OnLine Business Group, which includes include MSN.com, MSNTV and MSN Internet Access programming, advertising sales, business development, and marketing for Live Platforms, MSN and Windows Live.

Steve Berkowitz has been responsible for many changes at Ask.com, including a cleaner interface and better search results, that were the reason for the recent gains in traffic and revenue. "Steve is an accomplished senior executive with a rich skill set, including consumer brand building, media, marketing, operations, people management, finance, and technology. He also brings a great blend of start-up and high growth business experiences. Prior to joining Ask, Steve was the President and COO of IDG Books, where he successfully built a consumer brand by expanding the "Dummies" series of books to cover topics ranging from C++ to pet care." said Kevin Johnson, Microsoft's copresident of the platforms & services division.

In January 2006, MSN Search market share in the US was 13.5%, while Ask market share was 6.0%.

April 23, 2006

Multilanguage Search From Yahoo

Yahoo wants to make every language feel like English. Enter your query in your language and the search results will include not just the web pages written in your language, but also web pages written in other languages. For example, you'll be able to find this blog post if you search for [Recherche multilingue Yahoo], even if I didn't include these French words. And when you click on the results, you'll see this blog post translated in French.

The multilingual search is available at Yahoo! France and Yahoo! Germany. You just have to activate "Recherche multilingue" or "Suche Translator" option. The search results will include pages written in French, English, German, Spanish and Italian.



Get Yahoo Mail Beta

A reader posted in the comments a clever trick to try the new Yahoo Mail Beta:

To get Yahoo Mail Beta, just switch your content preference to Germany, France or UK. Then you will be asked if you want to join the beta when you log into your Yahoo Mail. Say yes, and join the beta. Then from the options menu, change your content preference what it was before. Then go to Yahoo Mail again. You should see Yahoo Beta. If you don't see it, go to options and click "Try Beta" button. That's all.

How to change your content preference:

* log in to Yahoo Mail
* click Options
* select Account information from the left panel
* go to Member Information, General Preferences, Preferred Content
* select, for example, Yahoo UK
* click Finished
* go to Yahoo Mail
* you'll see a page that says "It's the New Yahoo! Mail Beta... and you're invited."
* click on "Try Beta Now".

Related:

Yahoo Mail has unlimited storage
Yahoo Mail Beta vs Gmail

Update [September 16]: Now you can get Yahoo Mail Beta from this page.

April 22, 2006

The Most Powerful Windows Application

How much would you pay for an application that can do:

* file-manager inspired by Norton Commander, but with a modern Windows interface
* has two panes for easy file management
* every pane can have as many tabs as you want
* advanced file search with regular expressions
* rename multiple files
* split files (useful if you want to send a large file by email)
* pack/unpack files in ZIP format
* compare directories
* synchronize directories
* FTP client with support for SFTP
* document viewer that supports: text files, source code files (Assembler, C++, CSS, Delphi, FoxPro, JavaScript, Perl, PHP, SQL, XML), HTML, RTF, Word documents, Excel sheets, OpenOffice documents, executable files, DLL, INI files, registry files, image files (PNG, JPG, GIF, Paint Shop Pro, BMP, PSD, ICO, CUR, ANI, MAC, WMF, EMF, PIC), Flash, media files (MP3, WMA, OGG, AVI), database files (FoxPro, dBase, Paradox, Access, MySQL, CSV), archives (RAR, ZIP, TAR, GZ, 7zip, bzip2), disk image files (ISO, BIN, IMG, NRG)
* AES encryptor (encrypt/decrypt files with 128bit key using password or keyfile)
* decompilation of 32-bit PE executables (EXE SCR) and libraries (DLL OCX CPL BPL), resource files (RES DCR)
* create a list file with all selected files and directories
* count the size of all files in a directory
* shows informations about solar and moon dates, celebrations and calendars
* synchronize your local computer with atomic time via Internet
* browse NT events and services faster
* view/edit/kill processes that are running currently on the system
* RSS Reader
* CD/DVD burning
* view and edit files on ext2 partitions (useful to manage files on Linux partitions from Windows)
* mount disk images as additional virtual drives in system
* much more...

You can pay $34 or you can use it for free, if you don't mind clicking on a button everytime the application starts. Total Commander PowerPack is the most powerful Windows utility you can get for free. And the setup has less than 15MB.

Just compare this list of characteristics with the features of any other application and you will get the most feature-rich and the most powerful Windows application.

AdSense: Text Referrals, Personalized Search

The new site-flavored search option available in AdSense personalizes web results according to your site's theme. If you have a gardening site and your users search for [apple], the first results will be about the fruit, not about Apple Computers.

Google AdSense also launched text referrals. You can promote using text referrals Google AdWords (you get $20 for the first $100 spent on ads), Google AdSense (you get $100 for the first $100 earned in the first six months) and Firefox (you earn at most $1 for every first Firefox installation on a Windows system). For every product, you have four alternatives of text, generated with JavaScript. It would be nice to embed the text referral in an article like a normal link. I wonder why Google doesn't provide a link you can use to refer the products, for example: http://adwords.google.com/referral?clientid=xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx. It's really that important to control the text of the referral and its formatting?

April 21, 2006

eBay Creates Anti-Google Union With Yahoo and Microsoft

eBay held talks with Yahoo and Microsoft about a partnership with Yahoo! and Microsoft to counter-attack Google. "The reality is we work closely with all these companies. We're always talking to them," a spokesman for eBay said to Times.

eBay doesn't like Google Base, an online classified advertising site, that could compete with eBay's core business and Google Talk, a minimalist VOIP client that has the potential to become a threat to Skype, the market leader in VOIP telephony, owned by eBay. But probably the biggest threat for eBay is GBuy, Google's Internet payment service, that will launch soon and will compete with PayPal. "For the last nine months, Google has recruited online retailers to test GBuy, according to one person briefed on the service. GBuy will feature an icon posted alongside the paid-search ads of merchants, which Google hopes will tempt consumers to click on the ads, says this person. GBuy will also let consumers store their credit-card information on Google." an article from wall Street Journal informed three months ago.

Google Q1 2006 Revenue = 160% * Google Q1 2005 Revenue

Google reported a profit of $592.3 million on revenue of $2.25 billion on the first-quarter of 2006, an increase of 60% from profit of $369.2 million on revenue of $1.26 billion in the corresponding period last year. Google's ad-sales network had the biggest increase: it generated $928 million, or 59 percent more than the prior year.

Eric Schmidt, Google's chief executive, said the market share increase might also be related to the use of some of the company's new products, like Google Video, Google Earth and Google Maps, as well as the introduction of Google News in several countries.

These services attract people to Google's site, where they may also conduct searches, he said in an interview. "All of a sudden Google is top of mind again, over and over again."

"We are driving this growth through investments in our infrastructure and our people, product innovations that attract new users, and relationships with advertisers and partners around the world. The strength of our business model gives us the opportunity to invest in our business, allowing us to maintain and grow our market leadership." said Eric Schmidt in the press release.

More: PDF file with Google's financial results.

Google Removes Joan Miró Doodle

Google celebrated 113 years from Joan Miró's birth with a doodle that incorporated themes from artist's famous paintings, including "The Escape Ladder", "Nocture", "The Beautiful Bird Revealing the Unknown to a Pair of Lovers". Joan Miró's family didn't appreciate that and asked Google to remove the image.

"There are underlying copyrights to the works of Miró, and they are putting it up without having the rights," said Theodore Feder, president of Artists Rights Society. "It's a distortion of the original works and in that respect it violates the moral rights of the artist".

I think they just didn't like the logo and didn't want to let people think Joan Miró had anything to do with it. After all, Dennis Hwang, the creator of Google doodles, is not quite a surrealist painter, isn't he?

More: Mercury News.

Google Real Estate

Update: Google Real Estate is now a part of Google Maps. Google says that "it collects listings in two ways: by crawling the web, and by receiving uploads through Google Base".

Maybe you want an apartment, a commercial building, a residential condo, a residential home or just a vacant land. Maybe you want to buy a house, or just to rent it. Maybe you want to buy a real estate in Las Vegas, in Seattle, in Palm Beach or within 30 miles of your city. You can choose the number of bedrooms, the number of bathrooms, the price interval, the square footage.

Google Base can help you. Here's how a typical listing looks like:

House United States
Price: $799,900 Listing type: for sale Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 3 Property type: house
Charming Hacienda - This magnificent home is built in the Spanish Mission design with the finest quality and architectural details.
http://properties.iht.com - posted on Apr 19

Google Scholar PageRank

Google Scholar launched a new feature: ranking the recent papers by their importance. The importance of a paper is established by looking at the previous papers of the author, by counting the citations and their importance. So now you can find recent papers about artificial intelligence ordered by relevance.

Google tried to implement a version of the PageRank algorithm from their web search. In fact, the idea of PageRank came from the way researchers rank the papers and the authors. Instead of citations, web pages have backlinks.

"Google Scholar aims to sort articles the way researchers do, weighing the full text of each article, the author, the publication in which the article appears, and how often the piece has been cited in other scholarly literature. The most relevant results will always appear on the first page."

April 20, 2006

Digg Club Story

Chapter one - in which we find out the rules of Digg Club.


Digg Club is a Club 2.0, where anyone can submit his opinions to the bartender. If you speak loud enough and your story is voted by the others, everyone will hear it. But Digg Club has some tough rules.

First of rule of Digg Club: Don't say anything bad about Digg Club.

Second of rule of Digg Club: If you say something bad about Digg and you submit your article at Digg Club, your submission will never appear on the front page.

Third rule of Digg Club: If you submit another negative story about Digg, your account will be disabled, your IP will be banned and your username will be put on the Indignation Hall of Infamy.


Chapter two - in which a geek discovered some coincidences


Forever Geek found on the Digg Club homepage two stories submitted by the same person that were voted by almost the same persons in almost the same order.


Chapter three - in which someone shares the discovery

Splasho saw the article and submitted it to the Digg Club, but it disappeared after five minutes. He submitted the post again only to find out that his account was disabled.


Chapter four - in which Digg Club responds


Dear Sir,

As you pointed out "to abuse, harass, threaten, impersonate or intimidate other Digg users". We have had many problems in the past due to users accusing other users of abuse based on false facts. As we have told other users that have emailed us about this subject, there is no abuse involved here, we have investigated it and yes it does look suspicious to the eye, but they are all legit users and therefor we can not ban them. We ask you kindly to email us if you believe a story is being abused. We would have done the same to any other user that might have been accusing you. You can post negative comments and negative stories [I had implied perhaps unjustly in my email that I was blocked for submitting negative stories about Digg] about digg, but please restrain from accusing or intimidating other users. Your account has been unblocked. If you have any other questions, please email us and weÂ’ll do our best to help you.

Thank you,

-The Digg Watch Team.


Chapter five - in which the story gets to the nice guys from Slashdot

The good old Slashdot was kind to add on the frontpage this shallow story about the Digg Club. Obviously, the Linux geeks were more concern with the philosophy of the Digg Club:

The main problem with digg at the moment is the immature style of writing most of its users has. A quickly written story about a great thing (tm) will get more diggs than the carefully written one that is posted 5 minutes later. This is a huge disadvantage for digg as I have to read the awfully written summaries to find the goodies.



It is a dark time for Web 2.0. Although the Beatles_Beatles has been destroyed, Slashbot troops have driven the Digg forces from their Ajax den and pursued them across the Internet.

Evading the dreaded Slashdot Moderator Fleet, a group of Web 2.0 upstarts led by Kevin Rose has established a new Digg site on the remote web servers of Revision3 Corporation.


Chapter six - in which the story ends

To show they aren't censoring anyone, the Digg Club guys put the story on the homepage. See? Everything turned out OK, and the good old Slashdot saved the day.


Digg Club Soundtrack


With your feet in the air and your head on the ground
Try this trick and spin it, yeah
Your head will collapse
But there's nothing in it
And you'll ask yourself

Where is my mind?
[Credit: The Pixies].

Google Calendar Synchronization With iPod

If you have an iPod and you use Windows, there is a small application that can help synchronize your Google Calendar with iPod: getCals. It works with iPod Video and iPod Nano.

Google Calendar API

To create a Google Calendar API, Google developed GData, a new protocol based on Atom 1.0 and RSS 2.0 that can be used to query and to update data. GData supports authentication and can be integrated with JavaScript/AJAX-based clients in a web browser.

Google Calendar allows client applications to view and update calendar events as GData feeds. You can use Google Calendar data API to create new events, edit or delete existing events, and query for events that match a criteria.

Google Calendar API may be useful to create a different interface for Google Calendar, a Google Calendar viewer for public calendars or you can display your agenda for today.

Google Calendar API

April 19, 2006

Google Enterprise Launch With No Working Links

The launch of the new Google Search Appliance was announced by Google in many places. Unfortunately, most of the links return the 404 error code.

Google Enterprise Developer Community features OneBox modules from Oracle, SalesForce and Cognos. Only Cognos link works.

Google Press Release links to http://www.google.com/enterprise/onebox that also doesn't work.

Google Enterprise Blog talks about a video that doesn't exist yet:

"Take a peek at this video to hear some of our partners talk about why they think a Google search box is a great way to reach their applications."

Find Clinical Trials on Google

The most commonly performed clinical trials (medical studies) evaluate new drugs, medical devices, biologics, or other interventions to patients.

You can use Google Base to help medical institutes find new treatments for brain tumor, breast cancer, breast neoplasms, cancer, cardiovascular diseases, HIV infections, leukemia, lymphoma or osteoporosis.

Pharmaceutical clinical trials are classified into four phases:

Phase 1
- small (20-80) group of healthy volunteers or patients (for cancer and HIV drug trials)
- test safety and tolerability

Phase 2
- larger groups (100-300)
- test clinical efficacity

Phase 3
- large patient groups (1000-3000)
- compare the treatment with other alternatives

Phase 4
- after launching the medicine

You can also select the organization that is responsible for the clinical trial.

ScanR - use camera phones for OCR

scanR is a free service that lets you transform camera phone pictures into PDF documents. You can take a picture of a document, send it to scanR by email and in less than a minute you'll get a PDF file. If you save the file as text in Acrobat Reader, you'll have the text contained in the document. You can also use it for whiteboard images.

scanR requires 1 megapixel cameras for whiteboard scanning and 2 megapixel cameras for document scanning. For best results, take pictures about 12" from the document, in a well-lit area.

I tested this online OCR service with Sony Ericsson K750i and the results were pretty good. It missed some characters, so it can't be used as a replacement for an OCR software as Abbyy FineReader, but the PDF from scanR can improve the results of an OCR processing with a commercial software.

Related:
Use Gmail to break PDF DRM

New Google Mini

In addition to the updated Search Appliance, Google launched the new Google Mini, that's 25 times faster and half the size of the previous version.

Google Mini, a reduced version of Google Search Appliance, is designed to help small and medium-sized business search their intranet, documents and websites.

April 18, 2006

Google OneBox for Enterprise


Google integrated OneBox functionality in their Google Search Appliance for corpoate environment. Now employees can see real-time contact info, sales forecasts, and customer information related to their search queries.

Google launched an initial set of OneBox modules with Oracle, Cognos, SAS and Salesforce.com. That means Google will combine Oracle databases, Cognos business intelligence software, and Salesforce.com customer info in a similar way with Google Maps mashups.

"It's not just looking through Web pages," says Dave Girouard, general manager of Google's enterprise business. "It's actually a front door to business applications."

Earlier versions of Google Search Appliance had the ability to index structured and unstructured data, but they didn't have a good way to access dynamic data. Now business users of Google can find everything in one place, without using a special syntax.

The new Google Search Appliance (GB-1001) can handle twice as many documents - up to 3 million up from 1.5 million documents and 5 times as many queries - up to 1500 queries per minute from 300. It also includes the ability to index external metadata repositories and the ability to expand queries based on context and synonyms.

Is Google The Next Goowy?

Goowy is an online operating system designed in Flash that features:

* email (2GB storage), instant messenger, calendar
* virtual file storage
* minis (similar to Google Homepage modules)

Goowy IM will be integrated with Yahoo, MSN, AOL, and ICQ and will include themes and alerts.

Goowy file storage (not yet released to public) allows you to upload and share your personal files with friends and family. You can organize your files in folders, use drag and drop, listen to your music online.

Although Goowy is slow, it doesn't have all the feature implemented and will sometimes crash your browser, the project is extremely ambitious. Goowy wants to add new features like: creating personal pages and blogs, audio and video email.

Goowy is like integrating Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Talk, Google Reader, Google Personalized Homepage, GDrive (still a project) and managing your personal information in a coherent way.

You can sign up for free and it's best to try Goowy with Internet Explorer.

Related:
Google Desktop is Google Operating System kernel
Google Operating System as a hosted desktop

Google Image Search Game


Guess the Google is a Flash game that displays 20 images that are the results of a query in Google Image Search. Your task is to guess the query.

To make your mission easier, the query is just a single word. You have only 20 seconds, so you have to be quick.

You can see in the screenshot how easy is sometimes to "guess the Google".

Related:
A similar game for Flickr: Fastr, with a not-so-pretty interface.

Use Gmail To Copy Text From Restricted PDF Documents

Some PDF documents have restrictions: you can't copy them or you can't print them. If you have such a PDF and you have to copy a fragment from the text, just send it to yourself in Gmail. When you receive the message, just click "View as HTML" next to the attachment link.

From: Circumvent PDF DRM with Gmail

Google Travel

A job listing for a Google Senior Account Executive, Travel Vertical made a ZDNet Blog think that Google intends to launch a booking feature, Google Travel. They even imagine how Google Travel would integrate with Google Videos (to promote destinations), Google Talk (click-to-call feature for listed hotels, restaurants) and Google AdSense.

"Your main responsibility is to drive new business revenue growth with our Fortune 1000 advertisers in a specified vertical [my note: travel vertical] in one or more regions" the job listing mentions.

For now, when you enter two cities in your query, Google links to third-parties travel planning and flight-booking sites (Expedia, Hotwire, Orbitz), but the experience isn't very good: these flight-booking sites have slow search engines and intrusive ads.

April 17, 2006

The Thing About Windows Security

Windows security is as effective as a screen door on a submarine.

It'd take the malware makers about an hour to find any of the what, probably 80 holes that would let them go around such windows security. A back-and-forth battle like that could easily go on for months if not years. In Unix, security and permissions are the foundation, on top of which everything is built. In Windows, security is a hack that was added on later with no due consideration during the initial design phase of windows. It's no wonder it's next to impossible to get it to work the way you want it to.

When you are designing security, the sad truth of it is, the user is the enemy. There's no nicer way to look at it. So it takes a great deal of care to design a security system that can withstand the assult of a user while at the same time being functional and serving the user. It's too late for Windows to make those design considerations. They have errored on the side of functionality and sacrificed the security of the system. There is no fixing that.


Google Presents Da Vinci Code Game

Da Vinci Code Game is better than the book and is, of course, better than the yet unreleased movie. In fact, anything is better than Dan Brown's best-seller.

Da Vinci Code Game features 12,358 original puzzles created by Googlers. They'll be released over the next 24 days, in the form of six different challenges at four difficulty levels. If you are from the US, you can even win some prizes. What do you think about a first-class round-trip air transportation for four to New York, Paris, Rome and London?

Search Gmail In Your Browser

Search Gmail in Firefox
Go to this site and install Gmail Search.

Search Gmail in Internet Explorer
Download the new Google Toolbar 4.

Search Gmail in Opera
Go to Help/About Opera, copy the folder location for "Opera Profile", open it. Edit search.ini, go to one of the entries [Search Engine n] (for example, [Search Engine 2]) and replace the first two lines with:
Name=Gmail
URL=http://mail.google.com/mail/?search=query&view=tl&start=0&init=1&fs=1&q=%s

More about Gmail:
Gmail Chat in Opera
Switch from Yahoo Mail / Hotmail to Gmail
5 fast ways to check your Gmail account
Marissa Mayer, Google VP, prefers Pine to Gmail

Google Wishlist

Google Blogoscoped has a Google Feature Request page where you can write your top 3 feature wishes.

What people want from Google?

Gmail
* more reliable spam detection
* search within Gmail attachments
* integration with Reader
* voice in Gmail Chat

Search
* cross-language search
* being able to search for parts of words instead of whole words
* support for regular expressions in search
* request pages that are under a certain size.
* search results in RSS or Atom format

Gtalk
* integration with AIM, ICQ, MSN, Yahoo
* send files with GTalk
* record GTalk conversations
* voice conferencing

Calendar
* Calendar sync with Pocket PC, PDA
* Mobile Calendar
* show Google Calendar within blogs

People also want: GDrive, better integration between Google services, updated Blogger with categories, cross-platform Google Software and a better translation service.

This list contains the feature requests sorted by frequency.

What do you want from Google?

April 16, 2006

PageRank: More Popularity, Less Content Quality?

Jerry Chase has an article about Google PageRank and how sometimes link-ranking fails.

Popularity ranking does not work with many subjects, because reality exists independently of popularity, and is not achieved by common consensus. As Google grows further away from its roots, it becomes more bizarre in ranking pages.

Galileo was not thinking the popular choice when he re-asserted that the earth rotated the sun. Pasteur was not promoting the popular choice when he told doctors to wash their hands. Popularity is a transient phenomenon. Betamax was popular at one point in time. Eight track tapes were popular at one point.

Galileo summarized the problem with this type of ranking long ago:
"I seem to discern the belief that in philosophizing one must support oneself on the opinion of some celebrated author, as if our minds ought to remain completely sterile and barren unless wedded to the reasoning of someone else."

I've seen many times that PageRank is a big factor in determining results order. Websites that just republish content outweigh original sites that have a lower PageRank. The problem with link popularity is that when you don't have it, almost nobody finds you or links to you and when some important website links to you, other sites start to link to you and then people find you even for queries that are not so relevant to your site.

Google just didn't solve the problem of finding good content per se, they just avoided it by letting the other sites to decide about that.

Related:
ExpertRank - find the best, not the biggest
What Google, Yahoo and MSN think about the future of search

Google Earth Reveals Iran's Nuclear Sites


New satellite imagery indicate Iran has expanded its uranium conversion site at Isfahan and reinforced its Natanz underground uranium enrichment plant against possible military strikes.

Iran last week announced it had enriched uranium for use in fuelling power stations for the first time, stoking a diplomatic crisis over Western suspicions of a covert Iranian atomic bomb project. Iran says it seeks only nuclear energy for its economy.

Isfahan is the place where uranium is first processed and where a storage facility is being built. You can compare how it looked a year ago and how it looks now using Google Earth. You just need to import a KMZ file.

More: Ogle Earth

Integrate Google Desktop With Any Program


Do you ever open an application, click File/Open and wonder what's the location of that document with the latest sales report? You don't remember the filename, but you know some keywords from the document. You have Google Desktop, but you don't want to open a new window with the document. Besides, you are using OpenOffice, and the document will open with Microsoft Word.

There's a new plugin for Google Desktop that adds a new entry in Open/Save standard dialogs and allows you to search files using Google Desktop. Instant Search from X-Ray Folders integrates with Windows interface and transforms Google Desktop into a true desktop enhancement tool. It's much faster than navigating between directories.

Related:
Google Calendar plugin for Google Desktop
Google Desktop as data recovery software

Preview Google Results


Cooliris Previews is a Firefox extension that lets you preview Google results in an inline box when you hover the links. This is useful to decide if that site is really god and relevant for your search.

Cooliris Previews prefetches the sites so they load really fast.

Related:
Inline Google Definitions
Google Toolbar for Firefox 2.0
Reduce RAM usage in Firefox

No Spyware, No Viruses

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This great free software won't embed itself into critical components of your operating system and bloat your memory with its monitoring and collection processing executables. Moreover, it won't install other software on your computer without you even knowing it, it won't corrupt critical system files and trigger your computer to crash repeatedly.

Download it now!

April 15, 2006

5 Ideas To Make Google Calendar A Success

Google Calendar is a good product, but it could become a great product if it becomes more accessible to the users. For the moment, no search box in Google Calendar has an action URL set in HTML, they are accessible only via JavaScript and the output is made for Ajax.

PROBLEM: I have to show the sport events of my softball team to my mom.

SOLUTION: Users should have a permanent address like http://calendar.google.com/username/calendarname that displays public events in a human-readable form (like PHP iCalendar does). You could share this URL to people that don't use Google Calendar.


PROBLEM: I've created a calendar of great cultural events in New York. How can the visitors of my site grab the calendar to their accounts without copy-paste?

SOLUTION: Google should provide an address like http://calendar.google.com/addcalendar?url=calendar_address you can put on a site, so visitors can easily add your calendar.


PROBLEM: You like to search events with Google Toolbar or you don't want to log in to Google Calendar just to search next week's program of the Met.

SOLUTION: You should search public calendars using a simple link like http://calendar.google.com/search?q=query and output the results as a new calendar.


PROBLEM: I want to copy Italy's matches from FIFA World Cup 2006 Calendar to my calendar.

SOLUTION: There should be an easy way to mark certain events in a calendar for copying or deletion.


PROBLEM: I want to use my favourite feed reader to check today's agenda.

SOLUTION: The feeds should have parameters to sort the events by date, to show only the current events, to restrict the events to an interval. If the feed would show only the current events, you could use it the same way you check mail with Gmail feed.

Related:
Popular Google Calendars
Google Calendar module for Personalized Homepage
Google Calendar plugin for Google Desktop

Google Pages You've Never Seen

Google Moms
A tribute to Googlers' moms.

Google AdSense for domains
AdSense for domains allows domain name registrars to fill the otherwise blank pages with AdSense ads.

Google Sets
Google Sets is the oldest Google product that never graduated Google Labs. Using Google Sets, you can create sets of items from a few examples.

Google Dance 2004
Also Google Dance 2005.

Get stock with Google
Google provides stock and mutual fund information since 2001.

Google doesn't sell search results
Google talks about the integrity of its results and answers this tricky question: "In a world where everything seems to be for sale, why can't advertisers buy better position in our search results?"

Google WiFi
Google provides free WiFi in Mountain View through Google Secure Access, a client that makes the WiFi connection more secure.

Google Newsletter
You knew Google has a blog, but you didn't know they have a newsletter called Google Friends. You can read the full archive.

Chad's journey to Jersey
One bike. One Googler. One really long ride.

Google Easter Eggs
A Java game with an Easter bunny.

Follow-up: more strange Google pages.

Google Calendar Module For Personalized Homepage

Paul Russell created a module for Google Calendar that displays your Google Calendar appointments in order based on start date and time, highlights any events happening today and lets you decide how many events to display.

Unfortunately, for the moment, this module has a major flaw: it won't work if your calendar has recurring events (e.g.: birthdays).

Update: Google has created a module for Google Calendar, which works much better.

Related:
Google Calendar plugin for Google Desktop

Google Calendar Plugin For Google Desktop


Goocal is a nice plugin for Google Desktop that shows today's events.

It's easy to setup (just select Options and enter your calendar address), but it's just read-only: you can only see the events. If you want to edit an event or delete it, just click on it and the browser will open a page to edit the details.

To locate your calendar's address, go to Google Calendar, click "Manage Calendars" (a small link at the bottom left of the page), select your calendar, and right-click the orange XML button next to the "Private address" and copy link location.

The link will look like this: http://www.google.com/calendar/feeds/ yourusername@gmail.com/private-somecharacters/full.

Related:
Google Calendar launched
Google Desktop is back

Anthropomorphic Google Maps: God Loves iPod

There are many weird satellite captures in Google Maps. Among the most interesting are:

* objects that want to capture attention (like the "Will you marry me?" on a roof in New York)

* advertising hoaxes (the iPod below is the tailing dam for the Paddington Mine in Western Australia)

* natural formations (like the God in Peru)






April 14, 2006

Popular Calendars To Import In Google Calendar

Here's a list of popular calendars to try with Google Calendar. Don't click on the links, copy the address and paste it in "Search public calendars" box (you can see the box in the screenshot). Most calendars are in iCal format.

Film Festivals
DVD Releases (US)
Harry Potter Important Dates
Lord Of The Rings

Formula 1 2006
FIFA World Cup 2006

Astronomy Calendar
World History

US Holidays
UK Holidays
For other country's holidays, click the + next to "Other calendars" and go to "Holiday Calendars" tab.

Tech Events
Search Events

Famous People Birthdays

Find more interesting calendars at iCalShare.

Related:
Google Calendar launched

Google Video Ranking

Google Video has a new feature called video ranking that shows the top 100 popular videos. Google Video still doesn't show public statistics for videos, like YouTube, but this is a good start. Google Video Top 100 feels exactly like an MTV Countdown: you have today's position, yesterday's ranking, a thumbnail, a short description of the video and the link to the video.

Currently, the most popular video is a Carlsberg ad for this summer’s Football World Cup: Probably Greatest Pub Team in World, in which Bobby Robson manages a pub football team filled with former England legends, including Bobby Charlton, Stuart Pearce and Chris Waddle.

Related:
Joga - share your passion for football

Google Calendar To Include Outlook Synchronization And API

CBS' Larry Magid talked with Carl Sjogreen, product manager for Google's calendar service. Carl said Google works at a system to synchronize Google Calendar with Outlook and iCal. They also work at an API to let web developers share events related to their domain. Google Calendar won't have ads for the moment.

Listen to the podcast. [mp3]

Drag this mp3 play tagger from del.icio.us to the bookmarks toolbar or add it to your bookmarks and transform the link above into a play button. You'll be able to use this bookmarklet with any site that links to mp3 files.

Update:
Google Calendar API was released

Related:
Google Calendar launched

What Does Google Mean To You?

I asked Justin Pfister what Google means to him.

Google, to me, is a company with the sincerest of interests but they don't live in a vacuum. Like an artist, painting with technology, they are pressured on a daily basis to loose themselves in the wasteland by taking a path that's already been traveled. Even their motto "Do no Evil" is turning against them.

About three years ago, I became really interested in the Google search engine and I started writing about Googleonia, which is about the time that Philipp Lenssen Blogoscoped me. Google was doing something extra-ordinary, the bytes of information dance throughout the Google ecosystem, linking to each other and growing into something else, like a flower or a butterfly. It's so intriguing to see and to experience.

Part of me realizes that the information tunnel that Google sees is where life is really going. It's the next dimension of the human experience. When I contribute within the blogosphere, I get a sense that a part of me is living in another world in another time and it's satisfying to say the least.

Although I don't believe that Google is the only company that is able to see this next phase of life and information, I do believe that they are currently one of the strongest voices yelling and guiding us to something amazing.. "Come on world, don't be afraid!".