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July 13, 2007

Blogger Adds Trendy Search and Other Widgets

If you liked the way Google implemented search in most of their official blogs, now you can get something similar without writing complicated code. Blogger blogs that migrated to layouts can include a search widget that shows results from the blog, its blogroll, the pages linked from the blog and the web. The feature uses the AJAX Search API and Google Custom Search, so the search results are loaded at the top of the current post, without reloading the page.

The widget is available at Blogger in Draft, the place where Blogger showcases experimental features.

The widget may show sponsored links, but you can't earn money from them. In fact, Google doesn't earn money from the ads either and includes them for free. "Ads in the AJAX Search API are basically an experiment still. We are trying to figure out if ads are useful in this model, and how do our customers want to use the ads and benefit from the ads? We don't know the answers yet. Yeah, Google is not benefiting from these ads, because advertisers are not being charged for them. The only guys that actually benefit, to be honest with you here, are the advertisers. They are basically getting free impressions," explained in an interview Mark Lucovsky.

Blogger also added a poll widget and enclosures for podcasts and videocasts. "Enclosure links let you turn your blog into a podcast. If you've uploaded your audio or video to the web, you can link to it as an enclosure so that your readers can subscribe and download it using iTunes or another podcatcher."

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