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Imagine a research database, that upon searching for "wind energy," gives top results about the benefits of turbine technology to one student, while another student (with a different search history, or in a different state) is instead shown articles that focus on the noise and vertigo that wind turbines produce. Sound fishy? Google has unveiled a more personal search that does exactly this sort of thing, called "Search, plus Your World. Is this more about advertising revenue than providing access to information? For a nice review of the issue, see a competitor's Escape your search engine Filter Bubble! When, if ever, would you want filtered results?
Libraries begin lending out Chromebooks
Google is getting the word out there on its Chromebook product, working with libraries to gain more support from consumers.
Google has been working with public libraries recently in order to circulate its Chromebook concept. At least three libraries have been working towards lending out Chromebooks to patrons for a period of time.
Rik Myslewski reports in The Register that Wikipedia is looking at a possible upcoming blackout. Declan McCullagh at CNET notes that this is part of a possible protest response to the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act being debated by the United States Congress that has potential extraterritorial effects.
More spring cleaning out of season "Overall, our aim is to build a simpler, more intuitive, truly beautiful Google user experience. In terms of the details, here is the latest update:"
Google Bookmarks Lists
Google Friend Connect
Google Search Timeline
Renewable Energy Cheaper than Coal (RE
On Google today there is a link below the search box. It says - Watch The Perfect Game, a baseball search story.
This video is part of a series by Google called "Search Stories"
Here are the current stories:
Search Stories: An Introduction
Zack Matere: Growing Knowledge
The Tofino Riders: A 1,000 Year-Old-Wave
Caroline Moore: Supernova 2008ha
Dave Strenski: New Energy for Detroit
Erik-Jan Bos: A Letter from an Old Friend
I don't post this to glorify Google. There are several issues raised in these videos that will be of interest to librarians. A librarian is specifically mentioned in the Erik-Jan Bos video. The "Growing Knowledge" video has several ideas/issues that will be of interest to librarians. Each video is only 1-2 minutes. Consider watching them all and posting your observations and comments here.
As Facebook becomes the social platform of the Internet, a custom browser seems like the next logical step. What this means for the online landscape, and why it could help Facebook disrupt Google’s main revenue channel: targeted search advertising.
The fear seems be based on the assumption that if Google is gathering all this information then it must be doing so in order to sell it: it is a profit-making company, after all. ‘We are not Google’s customers,’ Siva Vaidhyanathan writes in The Googlisation of Everything. ‘We are its product. We – our fancies, fetishes, predilections and preferences – are what Google sells to advertisers.’ Vaidhyanathan, who likes alliteration but isn’t so big on facts, doesn’t explain what he means by ‘sells’ (or whether ‘to sell a fancy’ could mean anything at all), but if he’s implying that Google makes the information it has about us available to advertisers then he’s wrong. It isn’t possible, using Google’s tools, to target an ad to 32-year-old single heterosexual men living in London who work at Goldman Sachs and like skiing, especially at Courchevel.
Google Books as index
Enter Google Books as index. Side-by-side with the print edition, search Google Books for the term you’re interested in, and even if the book is only available in snippet view, you still get the page references for where that term is mentioned. And, even better than a back-of-the-book index, you can see the immediate context for the term, which will help you sort through all the references and see which ones are most relevant to your needs.
Google, lawyers get more time for digital library
Lawyers for authors, publishers and Google on Thursday bought themselves more time to reach a deal to create the world's largest digital library, telling a judge they were making progress in settlement talks but had agreed to proceed toward a trial of the 6-year-old copyright case on a slow track.
U.S. District Judge Denny Chin in Manhattan approved a pretrial schedule that calls for written submissions and depositions that extend into next summer, but he made it clear that he would prefer a settlement and offered to help the parties in their talks if it might help. He called the amount of time in the schedule "generous but acceptable." No trial date was set.
No doubt that Google decision to acquire Zagat gives its local business strategy a nice boost.
But it's not without some tension. Google, which likes to think of itself as the great organizer of the world's information, is increasingly owning important chunks of it. And that raises questions about whether the company will give the information it owns preferential treatment over information owned by others.
"This is exactly why Google is on the hot seat for antitrust," said Consumer Watchdog President Jamie Court, an activist and frequent thorn in Google's side. "This is when the search engine becomes the find engine."