Posts Tagged ‘google’
Sebatian’s brief TED talk on Google’s diverless car project:
I’m curious to see when this will become a reality, but also where it will become a reality.
DeWitt Clinton wrote a good, brief description of what the Buzz API means. Excerpt:
The idea is that someday, any host on the web should be able to implement these open protocols and send messages back and forth in real time with users from any network, without any one company in the middle. The web contains the social graph, the protocols are standard web protocols, the messages can contain whatever crazy stuff people think to put in them. Google Buzz will be just another node (a very good node, I hope) among many peers.
For those wondering “what’s the difference between this and Facebook?”, this is a big part of the answer, probably the most important part in the long run. Think back to AOL’s heyday- they had a messaging system that allowed you to communicate between AOL users, but eventually opened up email with which anyone from any email provider could communicate. It’s definitely harder to do the latter, but I think it’s always worth trying.
Google Buzz was launched this week. I use twitter more than facebook and friendfeed, so that’s what most of my comments will be based on.
Things I like about Buzz:
– No 140-character limit, but collapsible posts. I’ve never liked twitter’s 140-character constraint.. I think it goes about solving the problem in the wrong way. It also makes people sound like idiots when trying to fit longer statements in.
– No shortened URLs (like tinyurl or bit.ly). These are bad for so many reasons that have been well-documented by others already, so I won’t bother. I’m much less interested in clicking on a link if I don’t know where it goes.
– Open APIs! See http://code.google.com/apis/buzz/. Full PSHB support, enclosures, and social graph API. I’m hoping to play with these soon. (Something I found recently: you can find information about your google social graph here: http://www.google.com/s2/search/social). I’m very excited about the salmon protocol (syncing comments between blog posts and sites like Buzz). More about open APIs here.
– Gmail integration prevents me from having another place to check.
Things I don’t like:
– Delivering replies to your inbox should definitely be a setting, possibly opt-in.
– The “turn this off” link should be easier to find (it’s at the bottom of gmail)
– Contacts and privacy are confusing, and for some people the gmail integration won’t make sense at all.
– Youtube embeds seem to be stripped from imported feeds.
– The mobile stuff seems like it needs another revision.
We used this internally for a long time, and it’s a lot better there. Internally, everyone is on gmail anyway, and you aren’t as concerned with privacy, since communication tends to be very open. I’ve been finding that it’s a very good replacement for the discussion lists that are still used heavily.
I think it’ll be a while before we really know how this all pans out in the wild, though.
Slate has a pretty good writeup about this year’s superbowl ads. I laughed a few times this year, but found very few of the funny commercials to be memorable. The Bud Light commercial with the human bridge could have been funny if they hadn’t completely pulled their punch at the end: the bridge should have failed disastrously. Maybe that would be a bit too dark, but if done right, it could have worked a lot better than what they ended up with.
I’m of course biased, but I really liked the Google ad. It was simple, clever and very human.
It’s also really easy to parody, as Slate has done well:
I meant to post this a while ago…
When I first started at Google, several friends told me things like “My street isn’t on Google Maps” to which I would reply “Move somewhere else!”, but now I can tell them to report the problem themselves.
I’ve reported two problems so far: the marker for my parents’ house was slightly off, so I moved it (and the change was live immediately) and I found one road with the street name misspelled (still waiting to hear back from them on that one).
Keep it in mind!
His writeup is better than mine, just thought I’d pass along a clever trick.
Google Translate has been on a roll this year, integrating with a ton of different properties. I’m not sure why this recent one struck me the most, but I think it’s awesome:
Now on Picasa photos, like this one, it translates comments in other languages into your native language. There’s something about people all over the world looking at the same picture, reacting to it, and talking about it in their native languages that amazes me.
This economist essay on the Google Book Search settlement is a good, concise overview of the issue. Quote:
By helping to resolve the legal status of many texts subject to absurdly long copyright periods and murky ownership, it will make millions of books more accessible than ever before. Researchers from Manhattan to Mumbai will gain instant access to volumes that would otherwise languish in obscurity. Libraries will be able to offer users access to information far beyond their physical book stacks. And authors and publishers will be able to cash in on long-neglected works.