Google

Google Apps Are Out of Beta

After more than five years of sporting a BETA tag, Gmail and all the other Google Apps have been deemed ready for prime time. Google software has become a trusted part of millions of lives but all of them: Calendar, Chat, Docs, and more have worn the beta tag ever since opening to the public.

Obviously, this doesn't mean that Google is going to just stop working with these web applications and they're already hinting at new improvements that are soon to come.

More from the Official Google Blog.

Google Improves Book Search Service

Google’s plans to expand the scope of its Book Search service are running into static. A class action settlement with publishers and authors over Google’s book-scanning project appears to be facing a growing tide of opposition.

In the meantime, Google said Thursday that it is improving its existing Book Search service, introducing a series of new features that are aimed at making searching and reading books easier.

“Today I’m excited to announce that we’re rolling out changes to Google Books that give readers and book lovers everywhere new ways to interact with the words and images contained within the books we’ve brought online,” Brandon Badger, a product manager, wrote on a company blog.

Full piece here.

Google library a windfall for authors

Australian authors and publishers are set to receive a windfall from Google's project to put millions of books online.

In recent weeks several Australian publishing industry bodies, such as the Australian Society of Authors, the Copyright Agency Limited and the Australian Publishers' Association, have been contacting members to let them know about the settlement Google has reached with American authors and publishers.

Google and Tiananmen Square

Google's introduction of Google.cn, a censored search engine for Chinese users, caused an uproar in the U.S. Just how different are the results for controversial keywords using Google.cn?

See answer on FrontLine website.

Google Books Mutilates the Printed Past

Article in The Chronicle of Higher Education

In its frenzy to digitize the holdings of its partner collections, in this case those of the Stanford University Libraries, Google Books has pursued a "good enough" scanning strategy. The books' pages were hurriedly reproduced: No apparent quality control was employed, either during or after scanning. The result is that 29 percent of the pages in Volume 1 and 38 percent of the pages in Volume 2 are either skewed, blurred, swooshed, folded back, misplaced, or just plain missing. A few images even contain the fingers of the human page-turner.

LISNEWS Search



This is a Google search box that searches only LISNEWS

Using a barcode scanner with Google Book Search




Link to video at YouTube

Google's Oligarchic Algorithm

Andrew Lehman: "As a small web developer seeking rankings for small, local businesses, I find the decisions that Google has made over the years have been sometimes fair, sometimes selfish, sometimes in between. The trend has been toward depreciating its mission of providing useful searches in order to make money while encouraging the corporate status quo."

Search is too important to leave to one company – even Google

Search is too important to leave to one company – even Google:

The question of what we can and can't see when we go hunting for answers demands a transparent, participatory solution. There's no dictator benevolent enough to entrust with the power to determine our political, commercial, social and ideological agenda. This is one for The People.

EU to study how Google Books impact authors

The European Union's executive body will study plans by Google to make millions of books available online after Germany said the Internet company's project flouts EU copyright law.

The bloc's industry ministers agreed on Thursday to ask the European Commission to look at how Google's settlement with authors in the United States affect writers' rights in the EU.

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