GOOGLE ZEITGEIST 2005

Google Zeitgeist studies the aggregation of search queries for the year and comes up with some interesting lists – top news searches, top gainers in 2005, top shopping searches. Then it adds a visual look at searches for everything from significant events in world affairs to natural disasters to celebrities.

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GOOGLE BUYS STAKE IN AOL, SELLS SOUL

Google’s agreement to purchase a five percent stake in AOL was widely reported, but I missed the important detail: as part of the deal, Google agreed to start putting AOL-sponsored search results on its main search results page. Here’s Paul Thurrott’s description:

“Ignoring its “don’t be evil” corporate mantra, Google has forsaken its pledge never to let its search pages be subsumed by corporate interests.

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GOOGLE BLOG SEARCH

Google has set up a separate page specifically for searching blog posts. Google will attempt to index blogs much more quickly than other types of pages that change less frequently – virtually in real time, according to Google’s product manager for blog search. Here’s an article about Google’s rollout today. […] continued

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GOOGLE PURGE

The hard-working reporters at The Onion bring us news of the latest step in Google’s expansion effort.

Google has announced Google Purge, a far-reaching plan to destroy all the information it can’t index.

“As a part of Purge’s first phase, executives will destroy all copyrighted materials that cannot be searched by Google.

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GOOGLE TALK

Google has unveiled Google Talk, its own instant messenger program. There’s no surprises in it. Here’s an article summarizing the new service.

If you have a microphone on your computer, you can talk to the person on the other end, but there’s no other telephony or VOIP built into Google Talk. […] continued

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GOOGLE DESKTOP 2

Google has released an upgrade of its original desktop search program, with enough new features that it’s essentially a different product. Here’s the page for downloading Google Desktop version 2.

The desktop search has been enhanced in nice but modest ways – better integration with Outlook, a little more flexibility in searches. […] continued

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GOOGLE MAPS HYBRID VIEW

Google Maps has added a hybrid view today that combines their satellite and map views, so you can see both at the same time.

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GOOGLE MOON

In case your travels take you really far, Google has just opened Google Moon, with the same interface as Google Maps. Hidden joke alert: when you first check it out, make sure you zoom all the way in for a close look, then go take a look at new Google job listings. […] continued

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GOOGLE EARTH

Google Earth is another free service from the good folks at Google. After downloading and installing a 10Mb program, you have extraordinary access to satellite images of the entire globe, with intuitive controls that allow you to zoom in to your house or tilt the terrain. There are 3D views of the buildings in 40 American cities, and overlays for restaurants, businesses, weather, crime statistics, and more. […] continued

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GOOGLE WEB ACCELERATOR

Google Web Accelerator just turned up today, and no one can quite figure it out. The Slashdot community is nonplussed.

It’s a bit of software that takes your requests for web pages and serves them up from Google’s cache with compressed graphics and some other tricks to speed up page loading. […] continued

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GOOGLE & PACKAGE TRACKING

This isn’t new, but it was another Google feature that I had overlooked. If you enter a package tracking number into Google – nothing else, just the number – you’ll be taken to the UPS/Fed Ex/USPS tracking page for that package. Google’s page about searching by number points out that you can also get useful information by doing a search for vehicle ID numbers, UPC codes, telephone area codes, patent numbers, and more. […] continued

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GOOGLE ADDS SATELLITE IMAGES TO MAPS

Google Maps has quietly been updated to include satellite images. It’s pretty extraordinary – click on the word “satellite” to switch from traditional maps to satellite photos for a particular place or for a display from one location to another. Here’s an article about the new feature.

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GOOGLE MAPS

Google just rolled out Google Maps (on the bruceb favorites page under Travel / Maps). It’s a huge step forward from current online favorites like MapQuest.

FOLLOWUP: Wow, those are some gorgeous maps! You’ll be completely astonished when you click and drag on the map and discover that it scrolls freely. […] continued

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PICASA PHOTO ORGANIZING SOFTWARE

Google seems genuinely committed to making the world a better place. (Example: A client just mentioned this news story from last week – Google’s AdWords division, responsible for the contextual ads that appear alongside search results, insists that advertisers use standard English grammar and correct punctuation.)

A few days ago Google released version 2.0 […] continued

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GOOGLE DESKTOP

The Google Desktop is a free program that indexes and searches your Outlook folders and the documents on your computer.

This will have more of an impact on your world than you suspect.

From an icon down by the clock, you can instantly search every incoming and outgoing e-mail message, all of your documents, instant messenger chats, and the contents of every web page you view. […] continued

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