Oh Google! - Saves Kidnapped Journalist in Iraq writes "

Google Saves Kidnapped Journalist in IraqGoogle can claim another life saved after a kidnapped Australian journalist was freed by his captors in Iraq earlier today. Freelance journalist John Martinkus was abducted by gunmen on Saturday outside a hotel near the Australian embassy. Apparently Martinkus was able to convince his captors that he was a journalist and not a CIA agent, a claim easily confirmed by a quick Google search.


ALA President Weighs in On New Google DESKTOP Program

Update: 10/19 10:35 EST by B: Headline and text corrected as per comment (thanks to griffey and apologies to all)/

From comes another analysis of the pros and cons of the new Google Desktop Tool. People who use public or workplace computers for e-mail, instant messaging and web searching have a new privacy risk to worry about: Google's free new tool that indexes a PC's contents for quickly locating data.

Among others quoted in the article, director of El Paso (TX) libraries and ALA President Carol Brey-Casiano said,

"We do our best to protect our patrons and computers and network, but as you can imagine, thousands of people can use public computers in a given week."

The new Google tool would not only aid people in spying on past patrons on public PCs.

The power of Google's software relies on centralizing what's already saved on computers; most browsers, for instance, have a built-in cache that keeps copies of web pages recently visited. The difference is that Google's index is permanent, though users can delete items individually. And the software makes all the items easier to find.

Google releases Desktop Search writes " your email, files, web history and chats instantlyView web pages you've seen, even when you're not onlineSearch as easily as you do on GoogleGoogle Desktop Search finds:
    Outlook / Outlook Express Word
    AOL Instant Messenger Excel
    Internet Explorer PowerPoint

Google Used to Identify 1993 Victim

Anonymous Patron writes " Google Used to Identify 1993 Victim Google, the Internet search engine, has done something that law enforcement officials and their computer tools could not: Identify a man who died in an apparent hit-and-run accident 11 years ago in this small town outside Yakima.
I guess it really does know The Answer To Life, The Universe, and Everything!
So how can us librarians get press like this?!"

Google Print: The Google OPAC?

Anonymous Patron writes "Google Print Google's mission is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful. Since a lot of the world's information isn't yet online, we're helping to get it there. Google Print puts the content of books where you can find it most easily; right in Google search results.

So a search for huckleberry finn or great expectations has a little "book link" at the top that links to a google page that lets you read the book."

Librarians should learn to love Google

Anonymous Patron writes "Librarians should learn to love Google Traditional librarians worry that the Internet is increasingly the first choice of many information seekers. They argue that not everything is on the Internet and that what is there is not well organized. They point out that sites change or disappear without notice, and anyone can put up anything. They are concerned that people may just pick the first thing they see without evaluating it. All these arguments contain some truth, but they ignore how the quality, organization and ease of access of information on the Net have evolved.

Does this mean that libraries are obsolete? Of course not. It simply means that a wonderful tool exists to help locate much of what people are searching for without the need to go to a special place or ask an information expert."
Update: 10/04 14:24 EST by B:Reg Required: email: pass:lisnews1

Google Building Browser ? and others send "links to stories about the possible development of a a browser by Google. Here's one from the Register.

Google is spending some of the cash it raised from its IPO on headhunting staff to build a web browser. Staff have already been poached from Microsoft and Sun.Joshua Bloch, a senior Java developer at Sun, and four people from Microsoft's IE team have all joined the firm in the last few weeks, according to the New York Post. One of the four, Adam Bosworth, was also a lead developer in the development of Access.

And here's one from

Endless Search for the Perfect Metaphor

"All the world's a stage"? "No man is an island"? Brad Barker, librarian at Mark Twain Junior High School in Modesto, CA, was on a search for the perfect metaphor at the "Slam on Rye" poetry slam.

Yet perfection was elusive. He tried a Google search and of course the results were ridiculous, ranging from "rambunctious kitten provides a perfect metaphor for the rebirth of spring" to "The Mojave Desert is the perfect metaphor for the postmodern condition.."

Anyway, Brad's search continues. Read this entertaining piece at The Modesto Bee .

Websites Collect GMail Invites For Soldiers

The Curmudgeony Librarian writes "From the Altruism Department: Whether you support the war or not, these men and women need our help. Far from home, they miss their families and loved ones. A simple message from home is priceless. While free email providers are an answer, many of the free services lack the account storage space to allow for pictures, movies, and sounds from home to be sent. GMail with its 1Gig of storage is a solution to this problem. Unfortunately GMail accounts are by invite only. To deal with this minor problem, two websites have been set up to allow you to send GMail invites to the troops: and . Check out these articles from Jennifer Laycock at and Wil Wheaton at for more information."

Happy Birthday Google - Are you starting 1st Grade?

Search Guy writes from the
Google History Page:

On September 7, 1998, Google Inc. opened its door in Menlo Park, California. The door came with a remote control, as it was attached to the garage of a friend who sublet space to the new corporation's staff of three. The office offered several big advantages, including a washer and dryer and a hot tub. It also provided a parking space for the first employee hired by the new company: Craig Silverstein, now Google's director of technology.

Already, still in beta, was answering 10,000 search queries each day. The press began to take notice of the upstart website with the relevant search results, and articles extolling Google appeared in USA TODAY and Le Monde. That December, PC Magazine named Google one of its Top 100 Web Sites and Search Engines for 1998. Google was moving up in the world.

My how time flies...

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