Friday, February 27, 2009

[G] Google Analytics Tracking for Flash Applications

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Google Analytics Blog: Web Analytics Tips & Tricks: Google Analytics Tracking for Flash Applications

Late last year, we announced the ability to track Adobe Flash applications using Google Analytics. Flash tracking in Google Analytics provides the same features as standard JavaScript-based tracking, including campaign, pageview and event tracking. It can be used to track Flash content such as embedded videos, branded microsites and distributed widgets, including online games.

Since the launch of Flash tracking, we've seen some great projects that make use of the technology. We wanted to give a shout out to Matthew McNeely from InsideRIA, who has created a step-by-step tutorial on how to configure Flash tracking for your site. This tutorial is geared toward advanced users, covering everything from terminology to code configuration. If you have a Flash application you'd like to track, this is a great place to start.

For more detailed information on Flash tracking in Google Analytics, visit the Google Analytics Code Site. Have a great weekend!

Posted by Sebastian Tonkin, Google Analytics Team
URL: http://analytics.blogspot.com/2009/02/google-analytics-tracking-for-flash.html

[G] Tip of the Week: Model the underwater world

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Google LatLong: Tip of the Week: Model the underwater world

[Cross-posted with the SketchUp blog]

A few weeks ago, you saw the tour of 3D models under the ocean for the Google Earth 5.0 launch. With the SketchUp maintenance software that released yesterday, you too can model your very own underwater world! The first thing you'll have to do is to download the latest version of SketchUp here. Once installed, a few simple options in SketchUp enable you to select whether your model is above or below the water:

  1. Go to 'Window' then 'Preferences'
  2. Choose 'Extensions' in the left column
  3. Toggle on 'Google Earth Ocean Modeling'
  4. Hit OK

This will give you the option to place your model wherever you want it. Next import your desired terrain from Google Earth by finding the area you want and choosing 'Get Current View' in SketchUp. Underwater terrain will import just like above water terrain. It's easy to lose your sense of scale in the ocean, and if you get a warning that reads 'Camera altitude too high...' just move closer to the ocean floor. With your terrain imported into SketchUp, you can start your model.

Once complete, decide whether your model will be on the ocean floor or on the surface. You can find that option under the 'Plugins' menu. If you're modeling on the land, or wish to model on the surface of the water, toggle it off, like this:

If you're modeling under the surface of the water, toggle it on, like this:

If you want your model to be somewhere in-between the ocean floor and the surface of the water, simply choose 'Model on Ocean Floor' and place your model above the terrain:


Last, view your model in Google Earth by choosing 'Place model', and see how it looks. If you are satisfied, load your model onto the 3D Warehouse by selecting 'Share Model' and it may show up in the 3D Buildings layer. The same terms that apply to buildings on land also apply to underwater models. Your submissions must be real, accurate, and correctly located. There are lots of opportunities for geo-located models underwater; ship wrecks, diver destinations and offshore structures! Don't forget to fill out the appropriate information on the upload page, and to check 'Google Earth ready'. And that's it! Piece of cake. Sponge cake.

Posted by Adam Hecht, 3D Data Specialist
URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2009/02/tip-of-week-model-underwater-world.html

[G] System Maintenance Saturday

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Google Affiliate Network: System Maintenance Saturday

We will be performing system maintenance this weekend, during our normal Saturday maintenance window.  During the maintenance, the Google Affiliate interfaceswill be unavailable beginning approximately at 10:00 a.m. EST (3:00 p.m. GMT), Saturday, February 28th.  The interfaces will be restored no later than 6:00 p.m. EST (11:00 p.m. GMT).
 
Please note: tracking will NOT be affected during the maintenance period.  
URL: http://googleaffiliatenetwork-blog.blogspot.com/2009/02/system-maintenance-saturday.html

[G] Some users get redirected back to account selection screen with no error message

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The FeedBurner Status Blog: Some users get redirected back to account selection screen with no error message

Issue: Some users get redirected back to the Account Selection screen without an error message when trying to move to a Google Account. It is estimated this affects about 1600 FeedBurner users. We intend to resolve this issue for all users.

Workaround: There is no workaround at this time, but these Account migrations may be resolved manually by Google engineering.
URL: http://feedburnerstatus.blogspot.com/2009/02/some-users-get-redirected-back-to.html

[G] Senator of the Week: Your Votes Are In

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YouTube Blog: Senator of the Week: Your Votes Are In

Last week, Senator Cornyn (R-TX) kicked off the YouTube Senator of the Week program with this video in which he asked for your thoughts about the recently-passed economic stimulus package.



You responded through the Senate Hub's Moderator gadget with 112 unique ideas about what Congress could do to better stimulate the American economy, including eliminating the income tax and providing substantial student debt relief for young Americans. Over 2,400 votes were cast on these ideas and the YouTube community's favorites rose to the top.



In this video, Senator Cornyn addresses your top two ideas:







There are many other excellent ideas that deserve your attention and discussion, so we hope that you'll read them over and post your own video response to Cornyn's video to keep the lively debate going on YouTube. And don't forget to visit the youtube.com/senatehub and youtube.com/househub next Tuesday to weigh in on two new issues from our next Senator and Representative of the Week.



Yours,

Ramya Raghavan

YouTube News & Politics
URL: http://www.youtube.com/blog?entry=W73VNALRGBw

[G] Senator of the Week: Your Votes Are In

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YouTube Blog: Senator of the Week: Your Votes Are In

Last week, Senator Cornyn (R-TX) kicked off the YouTube Senator of the Week program with this video in which he asked for your thoughts about the recently-passed economic stimulus package.



You responded through the Senate Hub's Moderator gadget with 112 unique ideas about what Congress could do to better stimulate the American economy, including eliminating the income tax and providing substantial student debt relief for young Americans. Over 2,400 votes were cast on these ideas and the YouTube community's favorites rose to the top.



In this video, Senator Cornyn addresses your top two ideas:







There are many other excellent ideas that deserve your attention and discussion, so we hope that you'll read them over and post your own video response to Cornyn's video to keep the lively debate going on YouTube. And don't forget to visit the youtube.com/senatehub and youtube.com/househub next Tuesday to weigh in on two new issues from our next Senator and Representative of the Week.



Yours,

Ramya Raghavan

YouTube News & Politics
URL: http://www.youtube.com/blog?entry=W73VNALRGBw

Thursday, February 26, 2009

[G] Get Goghing with AdSense for search

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Inside AdSense: Get Goghing with AdSense for search

A few months ago, we shared a number of AdSense for search optimization tips with you. Here's the story of one AdSense publisher who recently tried some of these techniques and saw substantial results after making a few small changes.

VanGoghGallery.com is an art resource site that provides information about the life and work of Vincent van Gogh. Site owner Greg Alexander runs the Van Gogh Gallery to educate and share information about the artist, and has also used the site to explore new Internet marketing techniques. Greg joined AdSense in 2007, and although he didn't know much about the program at first, he found it "a great opportunity to generate some revenue without spending the effort to sell ads." He also tried other ad providers, "but none of them yielded the results that AdSense did. In addition, AdSense was the only one that provided relevant ads for our visitors."

To help users navigate through the many pages of the Van Gogh Gallery, Greg added an AdSense for search box to the right column of his pages. By enabling SiteSearch and displaying search results on his own pages, he was able to help users find what they were looking for while staying on his site.

As an optimization experiment, Greg recently moved his search box to the center column of his pages and extended it to twice its original width.

Before

After

In addition, Greg made slight changes to the search results pages -- he removed the borders from the ads and search results, and added a new search box to the search results pages. According to Greg, "altogether, these changes took less than 15 minutes to do."

After making these updates, Greg noticed a dramatic and immediate increase in the usage of search on the Van Gogh Gallery. He found that "the number of queries performed each day increased 8 to 10 times, and search ad clicks and revenues increased even more." His search earnings quickly grew from less than a dollar a day to double digits since his optimization test. "Now we frequently receive more search ad clicks than our total number of searches pre-optimization," says Greg. "I'm still amazed at how simple changes can have such an incredible impact."

Greg has started using the earnings from his AdSearch optimization efforts to build and host additional websites about other artists. "Ultimately," Greg says,"we hope to use the earnings to fund research trips to Europe to see the works of the masters and expand the quality of information we offer visitors to our sites."

Have you also tried our AdSense for search optimization tips and found success? Let us know.

Posted by Jane Brinkley - AdSense Optimization Team
URL: http://adsense.blogspot.com/2009/02/get-goghing-with-adsense-for-search.html

[G] New Functionality for Moodle

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Google Open Source Blog: New Functionality for Moodle

By Cristin Frodella, Google Apps for Education Team

We're always excited to jump into the world of education and when it helps Open Source, we're all the happier. Moodlerooms, a partner of Moodle, the Open Source learning management system, recently approached to fund a project which would allow Moodle users to easily integrate Google Apps Education Edition, our communication and collaboration suite. Our Open Source Programs Office sponsored the work and the result is an Open Source single sign-on integration between Moodle and Google. The best part is the extensibility features allow any educational software vendor to take a similar approach to provide user directory synchronization, single sign-on, and user data integration. Check out the full story on the Google Enterprise Blog.
URL: http://google-opensource.blogspot.com/2009/02/new-functionality-for-moodle.html

[G] New Functionality for Moodle

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Google Open Source Blog: New Functionality for Moodle

By Cristin Frodella, Google Apps for Education Team

We're always excited to jump into the world of education and when it helps Open Source, we're all the happier. Moodlerooms, a partner of Moodle, the Open Source learning management system, recently approached to fund a project which would allow Moodle users to easily integrate Google Apps Education Edition, our communication and collaboration suite. Our Open Source Programs Office sponsored the work and the result is an Open Source single sign-on integration between Moodle and Google. The best part is the extensibility features allow any educational software vendor to take a similar approach to provide user directory synchronization, single sign-on, and user data integration. Check out the full story on the Google Enterprise Blog.
URL: http://google-opensource.blogspot.com/2009/02/new-functionality-for-moodle.html

[G] Blogger connects to Google Friend Connect

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Official Google Blog: Blogger connects to Google Friend Connect

When we introduced the Following feature for Blogger last fall, we wanted to help you connect with fans of your own blog and discover communities of people who share your interests. It has been exciting to see Following grow over the past few months, to say the least. With nearly three million communities of followers on Blogger blogs, and with one person following a blog every second, we've been looking for ways to help these communities continue to thrive.

As a first step toward that goal, today we are integrating the Blogger Following feature with Google Friend Connect. Not only does this make it easier for anyone to follow a Blogger blog, but also it gives your blog expanded visibility across the web as your followers join other sites and share their activities with their friends.

Blogger joins an open network of websites already using Friend Connect and visitors can now follow any Blogger blog by signing in with their Google, Yahoo, AOL, or OpenID credentials. The blogs that readers start to follow will appear alongside the other Friend Connect sites they've already joined. Additionally, you can find some new blogs and websites to join by checking out the profiles of other followers.

This video shows you how to follow a blog:



If you have a Blogger blog and you're already using the Followers gadget, you don't need to do anything to get these new features up and running — we've already migrated all of the existing Followers gadgets to the new version with Friend Connect. To learn more, visit our blog post on Blogger Buzz.

Posted by Mendel Chuang, Product Marketing Manager, Google Friend Connect
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/02/blogger-connects-to-google-friend.html

[G] The Google cloud speaks 7 new languages

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Official Google Enterprise Blog: The Google cloud speaks 7 new languages

Today felt like a normal day. I woke up and went through my normal morning routine: got my clothes together, checked the news, watched a few minutes of the Golden Girls (hey – just being honest!), and drove off through the gray day towards work. Indeed, it turned out to be an appropriately "cloudy" day.

Because without any work on my part, without any software updates or downloads, hardware patches or rewiring, today, our Google Translate team added seven new languages to our Google Translate tool in the cloud. This means that anyone using Google Translate technologies, including all the Google Search Appliance customers currently using Cross-Language Enterprise Search (a recent feature added to our Enterprise Labs), instantly had their repertoire of languages increase to include Turkish, Thai, Hungarian, Estonian, Albanian, Maltese, and Galician. With this launch, Google Translate has now achieved automatic translations between 41 languages (that's 1640 language pairs!).



This, to me, is the beauty of the cloud, and the beauty of where we're headed in Enterprise search: securely bridging the gap that had existed in traditional enterprise deployments, bringing together the best of the corporate network and the cloud. With the Google Search Appliance, you get a hardware unit that packages the powerful algorithms of Google.com, and which allows you to search all of your internal documents securely behind your corporate firewall. While this hardware sits safely in your office, tools like Cross-Language Enterprise Search, Google Apps integration and Google Sites integration, allow an IT department to tap into the unique features and "versionless" innovation possible only in the cloud.

Previously, bringing seven new languages into an enterprise search solution would have required the addition of entirely new hardware or software, taking hours or days to update and to train people on. Today, the cloud allows these innovations to flow directly into the Google Search Appliance, for any and all to take advantage of. Any Google Search Appliance customers interested in utilizing this tool and others like it can download these features in our Enterprise Labs.

Here's to future innovations - or as some might say:
"gelecek yenilikler"
"นวัตกรรมในอนาคต"
"jövőbeni innovációk"
"tulevikus uuendused"
"ardhmen novacioneve"
"innovazzjonijiet fil-futur"
"innovacións futuras"

And to all on the Google Translate team: thank you for being a friend.

Posted by Cyrus Mistry, Product Manager, Google Enterprise
URL: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.com/2009/02/google-cloud-speaks-7-new-languages.html

[G] Translate between 41 languages with Google Translate

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Official Google Blog: Translate between 41 languages with Google Translate

Google Translate recently added Turkish, Thai, Hungarian, Estonian, Albanian, Maltese, and Galician to the mix. The rollout of these seven additional languages marks a new milestone: automatic translations between 41 languages (1,640 language pairs!). This means we can now translate between languages read by 98% of Internet users.

In just a few years, the machine translation group within Google Research has taken its initial research system from two languages to 41 languages and is now handling millions of translation requests a day. For several languages, Google Translate is the first freely available machine translation system for these languages. Of course, there's always room for improvement, and we're working hard to improve translation quality. Our statistical models are built from vast quantities of monolingual and translated texts using automated machine learning techniques.

It's exciting and satisfying to work on a product that can help people access content they may otherwise be unable to understand. We've heard stories of people using Google Translate to help them do business internationally, and we've seen many websites (e.g., New York's Metro Transit Authority) and blogs add the Google Translate My Page Gadget to their pages to make their content more accessible to people from all over the world.

Whenever I personally travel, I do lots of research on the web to figure out what to see and do, and where to stay and eat. With Translate, I'm able to use the cross-language search feature to find and access the latest info (e.g., restaurant recommendations, most recent trains/bus schedules, special events, etc.), which is often only available in the local language.

More importantly, Translate provides people who may not otherwise have a lot of web content available in their own language with access to the wealth of content on the truly worldwide web.

Posted by Jeff Chin, Product Manager
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/02/translate-between-41-languages-with.html

[G] Francis Ford Coppola Vlogs on YouTube

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YouTube Blog: Francis Ford Coppola Vlogs on YouTube

From Michel Gondry (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind) solving a Rubik's cube with his nose, to Jason Reitman (Juno) documenting his on-stage film festival experience, to Jon Chu's (Step Up 2: The Streets) dance battle with Miley Cyrus, renowned filmmakers have found many different ways to share their work and stories on YouTube. With this vlog filmed in his Napa Valley home, legendary director Francis Ford Coppola becomes the latest auteur to take to the site. Hear him speak about his lengthy career, the inspiration for his new film and his plans for the future.







Nate Weinstein

YouTube Film
URL: http://www.youtube.com/blog?entry=A0hDjersSlQ

[G] Blogger and Google Friend Connect unite

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Social Web Blog: Blogger and Google Friend Connect unite

Since the introduction of the Following feature on Blogger, it has been adopted by nearly three million blogs, with someone following a new blog every second. Over the past few months, we’ve been striving to make it better, and now we're proud to announce the integration of Google Friend Connect and Blogger.

By building on Friend Connect technology, the Following feature can now tap into an open ecosystem. Visitors will be able to follow a blog using their Google, Yahoo, AIM, or OpenID account, just as they can on any other site with Friend Connect. These blogs will be listed in their profile alongside other sites they've joined. And it also leverages existing friend relationships, meaning they'll be able to quickly see if their friends also follow the blog.

Watch the video below to learn more:


If you're already using Friend Connect on your blog, like we do on this blog, you don't need to change anything. You can continue to use Friend Connect as you have in the past. And this is just the first step in the integration, so be sure to stay tuned for further improvements, including an easy way to add OpenSocial gadgets through Blogger and the integration of the commenting features. To learn more, visit Blogger Buzz.

One note for readers who previously followed one or more sites with Blogger Following and joined one or more sites with Friend Connect: you can decide whether or not to show the sites you've joined via Blogger Following and Google Friend Connect in your Blogger profile. By default, we have turned the "Show blogs I follow in my Blogger profile" option off. If you change your mind, here are instructions for making this list of sites public on your Blogger profile.

Posted by Mendel Chuang, Product Marketing Manager, Google Friend Connect
URL: http://googlesocialweb.blogspot.com/2009/02/blogger-and-google-friend-connect-unite.html

[G] Blogger and Google Friend Connect unite

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Social Web Blog: Blogger and Google Friend Connect unite

Since the introduction of the Following feature on Blogger, it has been adopted by nearly three million blogs, with someone following a new blog every second. Over the past few months, we’ve been striving to make it better, and now we're proud to announce the integration of Google Friend Connect and Blogger.

By building on Friend Connect technology, the Following feature can now tap into an open ecosystem. Visitors will be able to follow a blog using their Google, Yahoo, AIM, or OpenID account, just as they can on any other site with Friend Connect. These blogs will be listed in their profile alongside other sites they've joined. And it also leverages existing friend relationships, meaning they'll be able to quickly see if their friends also follow the blog.

Watch the video below to learn more:


If you're already using Friend Connect on your blog, like we do on this blog, you don't need to change anything. You can continue to use Friend Connect as you have in the past. And this is just the first step in the integration, so be sure to stay tuned for further improvements, including an easy way to add OpenSocial gadgets through Blogger and the integration of the commenting features. To learn more, visit Blogger Buzz.

One note for readers who previously followed one or more sites with Blogger Following and joined one or more sites with Friend Connect: you can decide whether or not to show the sites you've joined via Blogger Following and Google Friend Connect in your Blogger profile. By default, we have turned the "Show blogs I follow in my Blogger profile" option off. If you change your mind, here are instructions for making this list of sites public on your Blogger profile.

Posted by Mendel Chuang, Product Marketing Manager, Google Friend Connect
URL: http://googlesocialweb.blogspot.com/2009/02/blogger-and-google-friend-connect-unite.html

[G] Updates to attachments: multi-select and progress bars

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Official Gmail Blog: Updates to attachments: multi-select and progress bars

Up until today, it's been a little tedious to send large or multiple attachments with an email. You had to select each attachment individually and you never knew how long it would be before those bigger files were ready to send.

Today, we're making some changes to the way Gmail attachments work. If you want to send a few files from the same folder, simply hold down the Ctrl key (Cmd on OS X) and click on each file you want to attach to your message. You can also hold down the Shift key to select a continuous list of files. A definite time saver.



You'll not only save a few mouse clicks selecting files, but you'll also see progress bars on each file as it uploads.



Posted by Wes Carr, Software Engineer
URL: http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2009/02/updates-to-attachments-multi-select-and.html

[G] Friend Connect: Grow Your Blog's Community

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Blogger Buzz: Friend Connect: Grow Your Blog's Community

A few months ago, we introduced a feature called Following, which lets readers publicly subscribe to your blog. Since then it's been incredibly successful: nearly three million communities in 39 languages have followers, and every second of every day, a reader follows a blog.

But your readers come from across the web, from Yahoo, AOL, WordPress, Typepad... not just Blogger. That's why we're excited to announce that we've integrated Blogger Following with Google Friend Connect.

Friend Connect encourages readers to use one account (whether it's a Google account, a Yahoo, AIM or OpenID account) to follow any site - a Blogger blog, a WordPress blog, or any other site that has incorporated Friend Connect. Each site that a follower joins will show up on their Friend Connect profile. Now your blog will benefit from increased exposure as your readers interact with other sites around the web - and their friends see your blog listed as one they've chosen to follow.

Blogs that are using the Following feature have automatically been migrated to Friend Connect, so you don't need to do a thing. And be sure to stay tuned - over the next several months, there are a number of additional features coming to Blogger as a result of today's Friend Connect integration.

One note for readers who previously followed one or more sites with Blogger Following and joined one or more sites with Friend Connect: you can decide whether or not to show the sites you've joined via Blogger Following and Google Friend Connect in your Blogger profile. By default, we have turned the "Show blogs I follow in my Blogger profile" option off. If you change your mind, here are instructions for making this list of sites public on your Blogger profile.

URL: http://buzz.blogger.com/2009/02/friendconnect-grow-your-blogs-community.html

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

[G] Explore more with User Photos in Street View

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Google LatLong: Explore more with User Photos in Street View


Starting today, a new feature lets you browse popular user-contributed photos from Panoramio at major landmarks around the world. The many people who virtually visit Paris to see the famous Eiffel tower or the Notre Dame cathedral in Street View can now also browse the wide array of user photos taken in the vicinity. Just look for photo thumbnails at the top right of the Street View image, and click to view. You can also connect directly to the community behind this great photo content - a link to the author's Panoramio page is shown with every user photo.
The feature is available in many other places too: New YorkSan FranciscoRomeTokyoBarcelonaSydney and New Zealand, to name just a few. Anywhere, really, where Street View is available and where users have contributed lots of high-quality photos; of course, this usually is near famous landmarks but you never know where you'll discover more to see. With user-contributed photos you can inspect architectural details and close-up quirks, or see what is happening at a place at more than one time of day, or see whatever else it was that inspired the photographer to press the button. Take a look at this video to see more: 



If you are a Panoramio user, you may already have a photo in Street View. If not, what are you waiting for? Just contribute your best photos to Panoramio and remember to geo-tag them. Google's image-matching algorithms will analyze them at some point to see if they are also a good match for a Street View location. At the most famous places in the world, competition for space is already tough -- take a look at the range of images of the Sagrada Familia -- but on less travelled roads the world is still largely a blank canvas. Please help to fill it in!


Posted by Frederik Schaffalitzky, Software Engineer, Google Zurich
URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2009/02/explore-more-with-user-photos-in-street.html

[G] New Status Dashboard for Google Apps

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Official Google Enterprise Blog: New Status Dashboard for Google Apps

We made a commitment last year to increase transparency and communication with Google Apps customers in several ways. We heard your feedback around the need for better communication when issues like yesterday's Gmail outage occur.

As part of that commitment, we're pleased to announce today the availability of the Google Apps Status Dashboard. Customers can use this Status Dashboard to check on the current service status of individual services such as Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Talk, Google Docs, Google Sites and Google Video for business. Administrators of Google Apps for their businesses, schools and organizations can also view the performance of the administrative control panel.

The Google Apps Status Dashboard represents an additional layer of transparency that we believe will be particularly useful for our business users, and it's also relevant to users of our consumer products. The Status Dashboard is the best place to check for information on service availability for Google Apps anywhere in the world. In my role on the sales team, I regularly talk with customers to make sure that they're getting the most out of Google Apps and I think that you will find this tool indispensable in managing your Google Apps deployment.

Additionally, here are other resources I often recommend to help account administrators get up and running quickly and smoothly and also to stay on top of new functionality:

Google Apps Help Center. Our Help Center for Google Apps admins can answer questions on "getting started" and also help you troubleshoot or find out the status about known issues. Topics include everything from email routing to data migration. We update the information in the Help Center regularly so it's a good starting point for any questions you encounter as you setup and manage your Google Apps account.

Google Apps Help Forum
. In addition to our own online support resources (see below), we have a vibrant community of Google Apps administrators who are always willing to lend a helping hand. To read tips and get help from your peers, join this discussion board for IT admins. This forum is moderated by Google Apps Advisors and fueled by the knowledge of expert Power Posters. Recent questions answered in the Help Forum include ones on IMAP functionality and MX record settings.

Google Apps update alerts
. Whenever we launch improvements to any of the apps or add new administrative capabilities – whether it's a minor user interface tweak or the release of major new functionality
we publish a summary with usage instructions and links where you can find more details. For example, we recently shared information on new capabilities for administrators to authorize who can upload videos to Google Video for business and instructions for setting password strength requirements. You can automatically get this information either as email alerts to your inbox, or you can subscribe to the RSS feed.

Google Apps Channel on YouTube
Here you can find product tutorials and overviews, as well as video testimonials from Google Apps customers and recordings of Google Apps-related talks and webinars. We recently posted a tour of a corporate intranet built by one of our customers and created a Google Apps Learning Center playlist to educate end users on topics such as "Webmail vs. Desktop," "Archiving or Deleting" in Gmail, for example. Take a look at the videos we've created.

The Solutions Marketplace.
If you know that Google Apps is right for you but need some extra help, visit the Solutions Marketplace to find details about products and services from vendors whose solutions integrate and extend Google Apps. You can find vendors to help you with setup and deployment, data migration, integration with existing IT systems, user training and more. You can see how vendors have been rated by other customers and also read about customer experiences with partners.


I hope that this information helps you get the most out of Google Apps. One of the great things about Google Apps is the community that has grown up around it, thanks to you!

Posted by Tessa Prescott, Google Apps Sales Team
URL: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.com/2009/02/new-status-dashboard-for-google-apps_25.html

[G] Ads in Google News search results

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Google News Blog: Ads in Google News search results

Posted by Josh Cohen, Business Product Manager

If you're in the US, starting today you may notice something a bit different when you search Google News.

Last November, we announced plans to begin experimenting with ads on a number of Google properties, including news query refinements within Google search. Today, we're continuing a similar experience for users by introducing ads on Google News search-results pages in the US. What this means is that when you enter a query like iPhone or Kindle into the Google News search box, you'll see text ads alongside your News search results--similar to what you see on regular Google searches or Google Book Search.

In recent months we've been experimenting with a variety of different formats, like overlay ads on embedded videos from partners like the AP. We've always said that we'd unveil these changes when we could offer a good experience for our users, publishers and advertisers alike, and we'll continue to look at ways to deliver ads that are relevant for users and good for publishers, too.
URL: http://googlenewsblog.blogspot.com/2009/02/ads-in-google-news-search-results.html

[G] Ads in Google News search results

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Google News Blog: Ads in Google News search results

Posted by Josh Cohen, Business Product Manager

If you're in the US, starting today you may notice something a bit different when you search Google News.

Last November, we announced plans to begin experimenting with ads on a number of Google properties, including news query refinements within Google search. Today, we're continuing a similar experience for users by introducing ads on Google News search-results pages in the US. What this means is that when you enter a query like iPhone or Kindle into the Google News search box, you'll see text ads alongside your News search results--similar to what you see on regular Google searches or Google Book Search.

In recent months we've been experimenting with a variety of different formats, like overlay ads on embedded videos from partners like the AP. We've always said that we'd unveil these changes when we could offer a good experience for our users, publishers and advertisers alike, and we'll continue to look at ways to deliver ads that are relevant for users and good for publishers, too.
URL: http://googlenewsblog.blogspot.com/2009/02/ads-in-google-news-search-results.html

[G] Google Analytics Videos From "Vacationland"

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Google Analytics Blog: Web Analytics Tips & Tricks: Google Analytics Videos From "Vacationland"

Back in December, we launched a YouTube Channel to make it easier to learn about Google Analytics. Now it looks like some users are giving us a run for our money! Rich Brooks of Portland, Maine has created a video series explaining how to use Google Analytics to enhance your online marketing efforts. Check it out.
It would be great to see an Analytics video from every state. Do you have a video? Add a comment and let us know!

Posted by Sebastian Tonkin, Google Analytics Team
URL: http://analytics.blogspot.com/2009/02/google-analytics-videos-from.html

[G] W3C Forms Working Group Convenes at the Googleplex

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Google Open Source Blog: W3C Forms Working Group Convenes at the Googleplex

Post by T.V. Raman, Research Scientist


I have been a member of the W3C Forms Working Group since its inception in early 2000, and it gave me great pleasure to be able to host the group's recent three day face to face meeting on the Google campus February 9th - 11th. This Working Group develops an XML vocabulary that is used for creating forms-based Web interaction. During our meeting, the group spent its time finishing up the test suite for its current suite of specifications. A significant portion of the meeting was devoted to designing the necessary APIs for implementing the Forms technology within current-day browsers via pluggable JavaScript. Implementing the Forms technology in a cross-browser fashion using open JavaScript libraries holds the promise of delivering cross-browser, cross-platform Web interaction that is authored almost exclusively via declarative markup, which helps authors create Web interaction without having to program. In addition to myself , meeting participants included:

  • John Boyer, Senior Technical Staff Member at IBM and current chair of the W3C Forms Working Group
  • Erik Bruchez, developer of Orbeon Forms , an XForms-based open source forms solution
  • Leigh Klotz, software architect for Xerox Corporation
  • Ulrich Nicolas Lissé, from DreamLab, an open standard security solution provider
  • Steven Pemberton, from CWI, an institute for research in mathematics and computer science
  • Nick Van den Bleeken, Research & Development Manager at Inventive Designers, a document and intelligent eForms automation solutions provider
  • Charlie Wiecha, Manager of Multichannel Web Interaction at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center

A breakdown of the agenda is available.
URL: http://google-opensource.blogspot.com/2009/02/w3c-forms-working-group-convenes-at.html

[G] New in Labs: Browser title bar tweaks

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Official Gmail Blog: New in Labs: Browser title bar tweaks

I'm often doing something on my computer and want to know if I have new mail without having to keep my Gmail window open. But if you keep Gmail minimized or in an inactive tab sometimes all you see in the browser title bar is something like "Gmail - Inbo..."

It gets worse if you use Gmail through Google Apps and/or in a language that tends to have longer words. You have to open the window to see if there is anything new.

So I added a tiny new feature to Gmail Labs called Title Tweaks that changes the order of the elements in the browser title bar to put the more important things first. Once you turn on Title Tweaks from the Labs tab under Settings, your browser title bar will display something more like "Inbox (3) - Gma...".



That way you can see how many unread messages you have even if the window is minimized.

Posted by Fëdor Karpelevitch, Software Engineer
URL: http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2009/02/new-in-labs-browser-title-bar-tweaks.html

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

[G] New Video Submission Module in Our Help Center

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YouTube Blog: New Video Submission Module in Our Help Center

Well, you've done it. After two Calls for Submission in our Help Center, and hundreds of video entries, you've proven that you want to use your video-making skills to help each other use YouTube. We liked your videos so much that we've decided to make them a standing feature in the Help Center.



Starting today, you can submit videos to accompany all of our Help Center entries. And there is no deadline, so you can keep sending us videos over time. To submit your video, just go into our Help Center and pick from the hundreds of entries. On the right hand side, you'll see a gadget where you can submit videos you've previously uploaded or upload a new one.



Pick the entry you think is funny, incomplete, too short, whatever! You can share tips you've discovered while using YouTube, tell your story through a funny sketch, a song, an animation -- we're sure you can come up with lots more ideas than us! We'll take a look at what you put together and will embed the ones that best accompany each article right there on the Help Center, where millions of YouTube users will see it.



Thank you for helping us help other users -- we can't wait to see your next idea.



Best,

Colin W.

Help Center Guru

The YouTube Help Team
URL: http://www.youtube.com/blog?entry=QlxLB1WUfzs

[G] Add YouTube activities to your mashups

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Social Web Blog: Add YouTube activities to your mashups

You may have noticed that YouTube became more social a couple of months ago with the addition of the "Recent Activity" box to YouTube channels. Well, the YouTube API is now following suit by providing activity feeds for integration into other apps and sites. Before you ask, the API respects all privacy settings, so the user still has complete control over what does or does not appear in the feed.

For more details, check out the docs, sample code, and the full post over at the YouTube API Blog. Here are some additional resources:
We're excited to see what kind of cool apps can be made with these feeds. And if you want to meet us and thousands of other web developers, check out Google I/O that's happening in May. The YouTube API team will be hosting two sessions there, including one titled "Going social with the YouTube APIs."

Happy coding!

Posted by Stephanie Liu, YouTube APIs and Tools Team
URL: http://googlesocialweb.blogspot.com/2009/02/add-youtube-activities-to-your-mashups.html

[G] Google Toolbar 6 beta for Internet Explorer: back to basics

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Official Google Blog: Google Toolbar 6 beta for Internet Explorer: back to basics

The Toolbar Team has always been focused on improving your web experience. We started with the goal of making search more accessible, and a couple of iterations led to improvements like search suggestions, Google Bookmarks, Autofill, and Custom Buttons and gadgets. Now we're bringing the focus back to our core areas of search and navigation.

First of all, in today's Toolbar 6 launch for Internet Explorer we're introducing the Quick Search Box (QSB) feature that provides search functionality outside of the browser. Just click on the Google logo in the taskbar to trigger it (or use the Ctrl+Space shortcut for quicker access). As you type, it will provide search and website suggestions, relevant bookmarks, and even allow you to launch applications directly from the search box. Try typing "solitaire" to see the application launcher in action. And here's the best part: as you use the QSB, it'll customize itself to your usage pattern, so over time you have to type fewer characters to navigate to your favorite sites and applications.


In addition, we're building on our existing suggest functionality in the Toolbar search box by bringing elements from our search results page directly into the toolbar. We're experimenting with displaying high-quality website suggestions and sponsored links as you type your query. Clicking on these will take you directly to the website (try typing "cnn" in the toolbar to see an example). Going forward, we'll continue to explore new ideas and optimize the search box to give you the best experience possible.

Lastly, we wanted to bring the new tab page to our Internet Explorer users (our Firefox Toolbar users have been enjoying it already for the last few weeks). You can quickly access your most viewed sites, recently closed tabs and bookmarked pages — all from this new tab page. Editing your most visited sites is easy, and all this data remains locally in your browser, meaning none of your most viewed sites or recently closed pages are sent back to Google. Those who prefer new tabs to open a blank page or a website can do so in the Internet Explorer or Toolbar settings menus.

So, give the latest toolbar a shot — it's available in 40 languages — and don't forget to let us know what you think.

Posted by Zelidrag Hornung, Engineering Lead, Toolbar Team
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/02/google-toolbar-6-beta-for-internet.html

[G] Zurich Open Source Jam 6

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Google Open Source Blog: Zurich Open Source Jam 6

By René Nussbaumer, Systems Administration Team

We started the evening slowly, and by around 18:30 almost everyone had arrived to enjoy the food and beer. Thirty-three guests from all over Switzerland and surrounding countries were there, and we even had one visitor from Canada.

After everybody enjoyed the first round of food, Gürkan Sengün started with the first lightning talk about hugin, a software package used to create panorama photos. Hugin creates panorama photos by wrapping around other scripts, such as finding common points in two images and putting the images together. Gürkan did a live demo of the software by going through all the steps to create a panorama photo of the audience.

The next speaker, Lukas Renggli, gave us an introduction into seaside. Seaside is a web application framework designed to make web applications easy to write and maintain. Applications are written using the component design pattern and can again be composed to build larger applications. Should any problems arise, you have the possibility of live debugging and live fixing of the code without loosing state. As a demo, Lukas showed us a simple application which calculated the reciprocal of an integer, all of which you could change through interactive links.




The next round of talks was started by Michael Schwarz, who is working on leanXcam. leanXcam is a small Open Source camera running uClinux that not only takes photos but is also able to process them on the device. After a quick introduction Michael gave us a demo how the camera works.

The last talk was about JExample by Adrian Kuhn. JExample is an extension for JUnit, a testing framework for Java, and fully compatible with it. JExample provides unit test dependencies to make debugging unit tests easier, providing graphs where you can see which components failed without running the actual tests. Adrian illustrated this functionality by testing a defective stack implementation.

It was a really interesting evening and everyone attending enjoyed it immensely. Thanks to everyone and hopefully we'll see you soon again. To stay informed about future Open Source Jams in Zurich, please join the Open Source Jam Zurich Google Group.
URL: http://google-opensource.blogspot.com/2009/02/zurich-open-source-jam-6.html

[G] How Many of Your Visits are from iPhones?

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Official Google Mobile Blog: How Many of Your Visits are from iPhones?

(Cross-posted with Google Analytics Blog)

Advanced Segmentation is one of Google Analytics' most powerful features - you can use it to slice and dice your Google Analytics data by, well, pretty much anything. We've made it a little easier to see what your iPhone visitors are doing on your site by adding a default Advanced Segment showing just visits from iPhones.

Enabling the new iPhone segment is easy: click on the drop down menu at the top right of any report next to the text "Advanced Segments", and select "Visits from iPhones" in the list of default segments. You might want to turn off "All Visits" when viewing your iPhone segment; if the percentage of total visits to your site from the iPhone is small, it will be difficult to visualize the two sets on numbers on the same graph.



Like any Advanced Segment, all of Google Analytics' reports are available; this includes AdWords performance, of course. If you use AdWords, you can now use Analytics to better analyze the performance of any campaigns that use our new iPhone and high-end mobile targeting feature. We've added the iPhone segment to get you started, but you can always create a custom Advanced Segment to compare or combine iPhone visits with other mobile operating systems; for instance, if you're targeting ads in AdWords to iPhone & high end mobile devices (which currently includes Android devices), you can create a new segment for iPhone & Android.

From the Advanced Segments drop-down, click on "Create a new advanced segment", and create a segment with 2 criteria. Drag "Operating System" under the "Systems" dimension into the target area with the dotted-line border, and type "iPhone" into the "Value" field. Click "Add 'or' statement" to get a second target area, and do the same for Android. Then, you can name your segment "High-end mobile" and see that traffic in Analytics.

Posted by Chrix Finne, Google Mobile Ads Team
URL: http://googlemobile.blogspot.com/2009/02/how-many-of-your-visits-are-from.html

[G] Show us and win: Where's your GSA?

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Official Google Enterprise Blog: Show us and win: Where's your GSA?

As you may have read here a couple of months back, we've been focused recently on the "art of findability" – or the ability to find and locate critical information quickly through the power of enterprise search. At Google, we believe that finding relevant business information through effective search should be as easy as...well, finding a yellow Google Search Appliance in your data center!

In this spirit, we're launching
a contest to see how "findable" the Google Search Appliance is in your workplace, and to learn more about how search is making a difference. Two lucky winners will receive an all-expense paid trip to the Google IO conference and have a chance to tell their story during an enterprise search session (if that's not your cup of tea we can also shoot a video). Other prizes include two HTC Dream phones, and a whole host of Google schwag. The only catch: contest rules being what they are, we can only offer these prizes to winners in North America.

Want guidelines? Read on:

1. Take a picture of you and your Google Search Appliance. Pictures can be of just you, or of your whole workgroup, as long as you're near your GSA. Yes, the GSA has to be in the picture. Have fun and be as original as possible! Oh, but make sure that this is in keeping with company guidelines – in other words, get the right "sign offs" first.


2. Submit your GSA story. Read the rules , then fill out the form to describe how your GSA has impacted your business. What do your users do better with the power of search? How much time is your IT team saving? What's easy about working with the GSA?

3. The GSA team will convene.
We'll look at your pictures and read your stories, and judge on both – 50% on the quality and uniqueness of your picture (look here for inspiration!), and 50% on what you say in your story.


Come on! Enter the contest. Don't yet own a Google Search Appliance? Click here to learn more. We'll share the news here when we announce our winners, so stay tuned. We look forward to hearing your stories and seeing your GSA.


Contest Deadline: March 31, 2009. Winners will be announced on April 17.


Posted by David Kim, Google Enterprise Team Member and Avid Appliance Photographer
URL: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.com/2009/02/show-us-and-win-wheres-your-gsa.html

[G] The search is on for the Google Search Appliance

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Official Google Blog: The search is on for the Google Search Appliance

The Google Search Appliance (aka the GSA) provides universal search for businesses of all sizes. This handy yellow box pulls together documents, images, and other files from web servers, intranets, business applications, and more, making all of this accessible from one search box. Now we're holding a contest to see how "findable" the GSA is in offices from coast to coast in the U.S.

If the GSA has helped your business, we want to hear your story and see your pics with the shiny yellow box. (Don't worry, your photo doesn't have to be star-studded to win.) Two grand-prize winners will receive an all-expense paid trip to the Google IO conference.

The contest deadline is March 31, 2009 and the winners will be announced on April 17. For more information and to find out how to enter, check out the Enterprise Blog.


Posted by David Kim, Associate Product Marketing Manager, and avid appliance photographer
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/02/search-is-on-for-google-search.html

[G] Your feedback on the blog

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Inside AdWords: Your feedback on the blog

A big thank you to everyone who sent us feedback about the blog, and if you haven't had chance to speak your mind, please take a minute to send us your thoughts on the blog.  Here's a quick update on what you've said so far:
  • 67% of you read the blog at least once a week, so thanks for the loyal readership! 
  • The top reason for reading the blog is to learn about new features and releases (voted for by 89% of readers), followed by keeping track of online advertising trends (voted for by 53% of readers).
  • The top product, outside of AdWords, that you want to read more about is Google Analytics (voted for by 74% of readers).  
We're also taking the time to read through every response you sent in about how we can improve the blog. Next week we'll share some of your ideas for improving the blog and also our plans for implementing them.

Posted by Amanda Kelly, Inside AdWords crew
URL: http://adwords.blogspot.com/2009/02/your-feedback-on-blog.html

[G] Browsers powered by user choice

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Google Public Policy Blog: Browsers powered by user choice

Posted By Sundar Pichai, Vice President Product Management

Last month the European Commission confirmed that it had sent a statement of objections to Microsoft about the tying of Internet Explorer to the Windows operating system, which it said "harms competition between web browsers, undermines product innovation and ultimately reduces consumer choice." Then in a blog post earlier this month, Mozilla's Mitchell Baker weighed in, saying that "Microsoft's business practices have fundamentally diminished (in fact, came very close to eliminating) competition, choice and innovation in how people access the Internet."

We are applying to become a third party in the European Commission's proceeding. Here's why:

First, browsers are critical to the Internet -- they enable us to surf the web, search, chat, email, watch videos, or connect to our social networks. And because they are so central to every user's web experience, browsers are crucial to innovation online.

Second, Google believes that the browser market is still largely uncompetitive, which holds back innovation for users. This is because Internet Explorer is tied to Microsoft's dominant computer operating system, giving it an unfair advantage over other browsers. Compare this to the mobile market, where Microsoft cannot tie Internet Explorer to a dominant operating system, and its browser therefore has a much lower usage. The value of competition for users (even in the limited form we see today) is clear: tabbed browsing, faster downloads, private browsing features, and more. Even greater competition will drive more innovation within browsers themselves - as well as in web design, enabling sites to load faster and offer new kinds of interactive tools and applications.

Finally, we believe that we can contribute to this debate. We learned a lot from launching our own Google Chrome browser last year and are hoping that Google's perspective will be useful as the European Commission evaluates remedies to improve the user experience and offer consumers real choices. Of course creating a remedy that helps solve one problem without creating other unintended consequences isn't easy - but the more voices there are in the conversation the greater the chances of success.

We don't know how the Commission's proceeding will evolve. But we are confident that more competition in this space will mean greater innovation on the web and a better user experience for people everywhere.
URL: http://googlepublicpolicy.blogspot.com/2009/02/browsers-powered-by-user-choice.html

[G] How Many of Your Visits are from iPhones?

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Google Analytics Blog: Web Analytics Tips & Tricks: How Many of Your Visits are from iPhones?

Advanced Segmentation is one of Google Analytics' most powerful features - you can use it to slice and dice your Google Analytics data by, well, pretty much anything. We've made it a little easier to see what your iPhone visitors are doing on your site by adding a default Advanced Segment showing just visits from iPhones.

Enabling the new iPhone segment is easy: click on the drop down menu at the top right of any report next to the text "Advanced Segments", and select "Visits from iPhones" in the list of default segments. You might want to turn off "All Visits" when viewing your iPhone segment; if the percentage of total visits to your site from the iPhone is small, it will be difficult to visualize the two sets on numbers on the same graph.



Like any Advanced Segment, all of Google Analytics' reports are available; this includes AdWords performance, of course. If you use AdWords, you can now use Analytics to better analyze the performance of any campaigns that use our new iPhone and high-end mobile targeting feature. We've added the iPhone segment to get you started, but you can always create a custom Advanced Segment to compare or combine iPhone visits with other mobile operating systems; for instance, if you're targeting ads in AdWords to iPhone & high end mobile devices (which currently includes Android devices), you can create a new segment for iPhone & Android.

From the Advanced Segments drop-down, click on "Create a new advanced segment", and create a segment with 2 criteria. Drag "Operating System" under the "Systems" dimension into the target area with the dotted-line border, and type "iPhone" into the "Value" field. Click "Add 'or' statement" to get a second target area, and do the same for Android. Then, you can name your segment "High-end mobile" and see that traffic in Analytics.

Happy Tuesday, and Happy Segmenting!

Posted by Chrix Finne, Google Mobile Ads Team
URL: http://analytics.blogspot.com/2009/02/how-many-of-your-visits-are-from.html

[G] Update on today's Gmail outage

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Official Gmail Blog: Update on today's Gmail outage

Gmail had a major outage early this morning: for about two and a half hours starting at 1:30 am PST while many of our users in the US were asleep, many people couldn't access their email. Lots of people around the world who rely on Gmail were disrupted during their waking and working hours, and we’re very sorry. We did everything we could to restore access as soon as possible, and the issue is now resolved.

Before you can access your account, you may be asked to complete a CAPTCHA which asks you to type in a word or some letters. It's normal for this to happen any time you repeatedly request access to your account &mdash it’s just to make sure you're not a robot.

Thank you for bearing with us.

Posted by Acacio Cruz, Gmail Site Reliability Manager
URL: http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2009/02/update-on-todays-gmail-outage.html

[G] Graduation day for Map Maker

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Google LatLong: Graduation day for Map Maker


Today, maps of 16 countries have graduated from Google Maps Maker to Google Maps. Adding the data generated in Map Maker to Google Maps has been highly requested by the Map Maker community from practically the day it was launched. Following our recent API launch, we continue in our quest to make the efforts of all our users as fruitful to the community as we can.

To celebrate this launch, we have put together a page full of great maps by our users - this page is awe inspiring. This launch is a testament to the spirit of map makers who have taken it upon themselves to map entire neighborhoods -- and in some cases entire cities and counties. We have observed many users add more than 1,000 edits to maps and a few have even made 10,000. Even in countries where not many have access to high-speed internet, we have found expatriates and caring users living abroad helping map countries they are far away from. Hats off to all you map makers out there!

Following are the 16 countries that now have data available in Google Maps: Bhutan, Bolivia, Cambodia, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Guam, Iceland, Mauritius, Paraguay, Philippines, Senegal, Seychelles, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Vietnam, Zimbabwe.

Here are a few snapshots that show some of the vital contributions made by the users of Google Map Maker:

Santa Cruz (Bolvia)
Senegal

Vietnam

Posted by Anand Srinivasan, Lakshminath Bhuvanagiri and Jessica Pfund, Map Maker Team
URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2009/02/graduation-day-for-map-maker.html