Saturday, September 26, 2009

[G] Google Feedfetcher subscriber counts are likely to change

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The FeedBurner Status Blog: Google Feedfetcher subscriber counts are likely to change

Issue: We have learned that Google Feedfetcher - the service that reports subscribers on behalf of both Google Reader and iGoogle - has recently updated its subscriber count database after a period without any changes. Feedfetcher should show fresher, more accurate data starting Saturday, September 26th as reported in FeedBurner subscriber stats.

The impact of this update is that you may notice significant change in these stats for your feeds; but it's a change that represents more accurate subscriber information from this source.
URL: http://feedburnerstatus.blogspot.com/2009/09/google-feedfetcher-subscriber-counts.html

Friday, September 25, 2009

[G] Where in the world is... (Answers)

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Google LatLong: Where in the world is... (Answers)


As always, great job figuring out the answers to all the questions. I hope you had fun deciphering the clues. Here are the answers in case any stumped you. For even more fun exploring the new imagery, here is a KML outlining all the areas receiving new data.

1) Once a political capitol, now a financial capitol, MapMakers in this city rapidly growing have cried for updated imagery and we have delivered.
-- Karachi, Pakistan

2) With updated imagery over this city, you can see leftovers from the Texas Tech - Virginia game.
-- Jacksonville, FL

3) This former "closed city" just got a GeoEye-1 update.
-- Sevastopol, Ukraine

4) The wettest area of the continental United States has gotten an update. (Hint: it's a Rain Forest)
-- Olympic National Park, Washington

5) This beloved stadium, which was built for the 1978 World Cup, is still in pretty good shape from the looks of it. There's even a go-kart track in the parking lot!
-- Cordoba, Argentina

6) Ever wonder where Aluminum comes from? Africa's second largest Aluminum production site has gotten new imagery.
-- Maputo, Mozambique

7) This great palace was constructed between 1857 and 1859, but was mostly destroyed by allied bombing in World War II. Finally re-built in the 90's, this site is now a major tourist destination.
-- Mandalay Palace, Myanmar

8) Though you can't do any shopping here from your desk, you can now view South America's largest open-air market with increased clarity.
-- La Cancha in Cochabamba, Bolivia

9) Connected to civilization by an ice road and a gravel runway, this diamond mine is difficult to operate.
-- Diavik Diamond Mine, Canada


Following is a more complete version of the updates in this data push:

Americas:
United States: Bradford County (FL), Broward County (FL), Baker County (FL), Dade County (FL), Holmes County (FL), Charlotte County (FL), Monroe County (FL), Seminole County (FL), Union County (FL), Washington County (FL), Highlands County (FL), Duval County (FL), Levy County (FL), Glades County (FL), Marion County (FL), Hendry County (FL), Osceola County (FL), St John's County (FL), Lake County (FL), Putnam County (FL), Boston Metro Area (MA), Brooklyn (NY), Cleveland (OH), Santa Rosa (CA), Ventura County (CA), Mission Viejo (CA), Kitsap County (WA), Washington State, Bosie (ID), Cheyenne (WY), Wichita (KS), St Louis (MO), Minneapolis (MN), La Crosse County (WI), Porter County (ID), Kenton County (KY), Campbell County (KY), Aiken County (SC), Wayne County (NC), Lenoir County (NC), Currituck County (NC), Armstrong County (PA), New Haven (CT), Hartford (CT), Portland (ME), Garret County (MD), Allegany County (MD), Washington County (MD), Howard County (MD), Montgomery County (MD), Prince George's County (MD), Anne Arundel County (MD), Harford County (MD), Cecil County (MD), Kent County (MD), Queen Anne's County (MD), Talbot County (MD), Caroline County (MD), Saint Mary's County (MD), Wicomico County (MD), Worcester County (MD),
Canada: Diavik, Ivujivik
Brazil: Impz, Maraba
Argentina: Mendoza, Cordoba
Bolivia: Cochabamba
Chile: Iquique

Europe, Middle East, & Africa:
Spain: Hondarribia
Portugal: Porto Santo, Madeira
Ukraine: Sevestopol
Russia: Kamyshin, Ust-Illimsk, Norilsk
Algeria: Medea
Libya: Tobruk
Morocco: Tetouan, Khouribga
Burkina Faso: Ouagadougou
Niger: Madaoua
Nigeria: Lagos, Port Harcourt
Zambia: Kitwe, Ndola
Mozambique: Maputo, Nampula

Asia & Oceania:
Pakistan: Karachi
Myanmar: Mandalay
China: Lhasa, Shihezi, Hami, Zichuan, Liazhou

New 2.5m base imagery for: Parts of New Zealand.

Posted by Matt Manolides, Senior GIS Specialist
URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2009/09/where-in-world-is-answers.html

[G] Bloggers wanted!

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Blogger Buzz: Bloggers wanted!

Have opinions about Blogger? If so, we'd like to meet you. We are looking for participants willing to document their blogging practices over a few weeks and answer some interview questions. This will help us better understand your needs and keep improving Blogger.

Interested? Sign up here.

Thanks!
URL: http://buzz.blogger.com/2009/09/bloggers-wanted.html

[G] Response to AT&T's letter to FCC on Google Voice

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Google Public Policy Blog: Response to AT&T's letter to FCC on Google Voice

Posted by Richard Whitt, Washington Telecom and Media Counsel

This afternoon AT&T filed a letter with the Federal Communications Commission, alleging that Google Voice is preventing its users from making outbound calls to certain phone numbers with inflated access charges, and asking the Commission to intervene.

Here's the quick background: Local telephone carriers charge long-distance companies for originating and terminating calls to and from their networks. Certain local carriers in rural areas charge AT&T and other long-distance companies especially high rates to connect calls to their networks. Sometimes these local carriers partner and share revenue with adult chat services, conference calling centers, party lines, and others that are able to attract lots of incoming phone calls to their networks.

Under the common carrier laws, AT&T and other traditional phone companies are required to connect these calls. In the past they've argued that these rural carriers are abusing the system to "establish grossly excessive access charges under false pretenses," and to "offer kickbacks to operators of pornographic chat lines and other calling services." (This is a complicated issue, but these articles from USA Today and the Associated Press explain it well.)

We agree with AT&T that the current carrier compensation system is badly flawed, and that the single best answer is for the FCC to take the necessary steps to fix it.

So how does any of this relate to Google Voice?

Google Voice's goal is to provide consumers with free or low-cost access to as many advanced communications features as possible. In order to do this, Google Voice does restrict certain outbound calls from our Web platform to these high-priced destinations. But despite AT&T's efforts to blur the distinctions between Google Voice and traditional phone service, there are many significant differences:
  • Unlike traditional carriers, Google Voice is a free, Web-based software application, and so not subject to common carrier laws.
  • Google Voice is not intended to be a replacement for traditional phone service -- in fact, you need an existing land or wireless line in order to use it. Importantly, users are still able to make outbound calls on any other phone device.
  • Google Voice is currently invitation-only, serving a limited number of users.
AT&T is trying to make this about Google's support for an open Internet, but the comparison just doesn't fly. The FCC's open Internet principles apply only to the behavior of broadband carriers -- not the creators of Web-based software applications. Even though the FCC does not have jurisdiction over how software applications function, AT&T apparently wants to use the regulatory process to undermine Web-based competition and innovation.

* Note: This blog post was updated at 4:55 PM ET to clarify the FCC's open Internet principles.
URL: http://googlepublicpolicy.blogspot.com/2009/09/response-to-at-letter-to-fcc-on-google.html

[G] This week in @googlemaps

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Google LatLong: This week in @googlemaps


Here are the tweets that were the most popular this past week in case you missed anything. This was also a big week for us because we reached the 20,000 follower milestone. Send a tweet to @googlemaps if you have a suggestion for how we should celebrate and thank all our followers!
  • Introducing Place Pages for Google Maps — everything about one place on one page http://bit.ly/VHMix
  • Beautiful hand-drawn map of Edinburgh. Zoom in on stairs o' death, late nite pizza & more http://bit.ly/JadMZ
  • I don't speak Chinese but really want to visit China after seeing these gorgeous maps/photos from NatGeo http://bit.ly/1YWi11

Posted by Julie Zhou, Chief Maps Twitterer
URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2009/09/this-week-in-googlemaps_25.html

[G] Jump to the information you want right from the search snippets

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Official Google Blog: Jump to the information you want right from the search snippets

For most search results, Google shows you a few lines of text to give you an idea of what the page is about — we call this a "search snippet." Recently, we've enhanced the search snippet with two new features that make it easier to find information buried deep within a page.

Normally, a search snippet shows how a page, as a whole, relates to a your query by excerpting content that appears near and around where your query terms show on the page. But what if only one section of the page is relevant to your search?

That's where these new features can help, by providing links within the snippet to relevant sections of the page, making it faster and easier to find what you're looking for. Imagine, for example, that we're researching trans fats and cholesterol, and their effects on the body. If we start with a generic query like [trans fats], Google returns several results with lots of information about trans fats in general, including this result from Wikipedia:

Now, included with the snippet are links to specific sections within the page, covering different subtopics of trans fats. Since we're particularly interested in what's healthy and what's not, "Nutritional guidelines" is probably where the most relevant information is. Clicking this link will take you directly to that section, midway down the page.

Now imagine we're particularly interested in learning about good cholesterol and what levels of it are healthy, so we try a more specific query, [good cholesterol level]. The top result is from the American Heart Association and has tons of information about cholesterol levels. The specific information about good (HDL) cholesterol, however, is contained in one section titled "Your HDL (good) cholesterol level"‎. Since the query was more specific, the snippet for this result now provides the option to "jump to" just this section of the website.


Clicking on "Jump to Your HDL (good) cholesterol level" takes you directly to the most relevant information on the page:


Clicking on the title of the snippet ("What Your Cholesterol Levels Mean") still takes you to the top of the page, as always.

If you're a webmaster and would like to have these links appear for your webpages, take a look at the Google Webmaster Central Blog for info on some of the things you can do. And in the meantime, we hope these enhancements help you find the information you're looking for faster.

Posted by Chris Kern, Snippets Team
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/09/jump-to-information-you-want-right-from.html

[G] Updated Versions of the Keyword and Placement Tools - Now in Beta

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Inside AdWords: Updated Versions of the Keyword and Placement Tools - Now in Beta

Feeding off the momentum of improvements we've made over the past year in AdWords, we recently released beta versions of the updated Keyword and Placement Tools.

We've maintained the core functionality of these tools, but have added some new features that we hope will make them more useful for you. If you use English as your AdWords interface language you may have noticed that you already have access to these tools, and availability to all English advertisers as well as other languages will be rolling out over the next few weeks.

The updated Keyword Tool (beta)
This new version of the Keyword Tool combines the functionality of the Keyword Tool and the Search-based Keyword Tool. This means you'll get keyword ideas based on keywords you enter, your website content, and user searches - all in one place. Also new is the ability to search by any combination of a keyword, website/URL, or category - instead of having to perform each of these searches separately. Additionally, you'll be able to see all match types for a keyword at the same time to help you compare statistics for each match type. When you've got your final keyword list together, you can download a selected keyword, all keyword results in the table, or all keywords (for certain queries).

The updated Placement Tool (beta)
As with the updated Keyword Tool, you can now search for placements by any combination of keyword, website/URL, or category. For example, you can search for placements that are only on youtube.com that are also video placements and that are also in the automotive category. Under Advanced Options, you can also further filter placements by Country or Language, Impressions Per Day, Included Ad Sizes (those sizes offered by the content publisher for their offered placements), and demographic options.

The updated Keyword Tool is available via a link in the current Keyword Tool and the updated Placement Tool is available via a link on the Tools page.

If you see these links in your account, we encourage you to test out the new versions of these tools. We've placed feedback links in both tools, and we'd love to hear your comments. You can provide feedback on these tools; so if you have feedback, please provide it via the "Send Feedback" link in your account.

Posted by Dan Friedman, Inside AdWords crew
URL: http://adwords.blogspot.com/2009/09/updated-versions-of-keyword-and.html

[G] System Maintenance on Saturday, September 25

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Google Affiliate Network: System Maintenance on Saturday, September 25

We will be performing system maintenance September 25; the interface will be unavailable at this time. Tracking will not be interrupted and reporting data will be restored shortly after the interface comes back online.

We anticipate the interface will be unavailable from 9 a.m. through 5 p.m. CDT (GMT -6).
URL: http://googleaffiliatenetwork-blog.blogspot.com/2009/09/system-maintenance-on-saturday.html

[G] Making account management easier with Full Access user settings

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Official Google Checkout Blog: Making account management easier with Full Access user settings

With the recent launch of 'Full Access' user settings, you can now give your operations staff, colleagues, or other individuals full access to your Google Checkout merchant account. Your 'Full Access' users will be able to view all of the information in your account and take any actions on your account, such as processing orders, viewing payout information, and updating account settings.

To invite users with full access to your account, sign in to Google Checkout and follow the steps outlined in our Help Center. New users who have been added to your account will receive an invitation email with sign-up instructions. Once they complete the sign-up process, these authorized users can access your account with full access at any time.

It's important to note that you are responsible for all activity in your merchant account by persons to whom you give access through the 'Full Access' setting. By providing those persons access to your account, you authorize them to use your merchant account and legally bind you.

Posted by Shubin Zhao, Software Engineer and Jan Kleinert, Developer Relations
URL: http://googlecheckout.blogspot.com/2009/09/making-account-management-easier-with.html

[G] New in Labs: Hide read labels

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Official Gmail Blog: New in Labs: Hide read labels

Posted by David de Kloet, Software Engineer

A lot of people want to see their labels in order to see which ones have unread messages, but they don't want a long list of label names cluttering up the left hand side of their inboxes. To help out with this, we've made a Gmail Labs feature called "Hide read labels." Turn it on from the Labs tab under Settings and all your labels without unread messages will be hidden under the "More" menu. Labels with unread messages will automatically show up, unless you've explicitly chosen to keep them hidden.

This is particularly handy if you use your inbox as a to-do list where unread messages are the outstanding things you need to take care of. If you use that method along with labels like "Home" and "Project X," it's easy to see all your to-dos in context. With this Labs feature on, labels with outstanding to-dos will be bold and have a number next to them; everything else will be hidden in the "11 more" section:








We think this is a nice addition to the new labels navigation bar and hope you like it. Tell us what you think in the Gmail Labs forum.
URL: http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2009/09/new-in-labs-hide-read-labels.html

Thursday, September 24, 2009

[G] Data Liberation Front Advances to Google Sites

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Data Liberation: Data Liberation Front Advances to Google Sites

Google Sites allows users to create and host a vast array of content in a central location. For that reason, it was critical to the Data Liberation Front that data be able to move freely in and out of the product. Today, we launch an import/export tool that can transfer data in and out of Sites as standard XHTML. This tool is built on the Google Sites Data API, which allows for more sophisticated liberation solutions as well. Head over to the Google Data API Blog to read the full announcement.

These tools are available for consumers and enterprise customers today and we look forward to feedback.
URL: http://dataliberation.blogspot.com/2009/09/data-liberation-front-advances-to.html

[G] Import, export, and more with the new Google Sites API

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Official Google Enterprise Blog: Import, export, and more with the new Google Sites API

One of the benefits of Google Apps is the extensibility and openness of the platform. Today we're pleased to advance that story by introducing a new API for Google Sites in Labs.

The use cases are plentiful for businesses:
  • Update Google Sites from 3rd party applications – e.g. your sales team's Google Sites pages can update automatically when new leads are added to your CRM system.
  • Migrate files and content from workspace applications like Microsoft SharePoint and Lotus Notes to Google Sites.
  • Export Google Sites pages, edit them offline, and re-import the updated content.
  • Export your sites, including every page revision, for backup.
  • Easily monitor changes across your important internal and public sites, all from a single gadget.
  • Push new content like changes to employee policies or a new corporate logo to any site on your domain, even sites created by individual employees.
  • Best of all, while this API is brand new, application developers will find it rather familiar – it is, after all, a Google Data API. And like our 16 other Google Data APIs, this one comes with all the standard protocol support around authentication and querying that you'd expect. You'll find everything you need to get started on the Google Code pages, including links to documentation and sample applications.
For those of you interested in applications already built on top of this API, be sure to look at:
We're looking forward to your feedback! Watch this space for updates to the API in the coming months.

Anil Sabharwal, Google Enterprise team

Get timely updates on new features in Google Apps by subscribing to our
RSS feed or email alerts.

URL: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.com/2009/09/import-export-and-more-with-new-google_24.html

[G] Singapore's Ministry of Education and 30,000 teachers go Google

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Official Google Enterprise Blog: Singapore's Ministry of Education and 30,000 teachers go Google

The Singapore Ministry of Education (MOE) is going Google, the first government ministry in Asia to do so. The MOE announced this week that it will be making Google Apps Education edition available to more than 30,000 teachers and staff members at over 350 schools in the country by the end of this year. The winning tender was awarded to NCS, Google's large enterprise solutions partner in Singapore, and to Google, providing the Google Apps online communications and collaboration suite to all public school teachers. We'd like to welcome all of them to the Google Apps community.

The MOE chose to move to the cloud to transform the public education sector through Web 2.0 technologies and a constant stream of product innovation and free upgrades with Google Apps. Chan Tee Miang, the MOE's CIO, also highlighted the benefits for Singapore's teachers, explaining that "this is a key project for MOE as it will facilitate collaboration and sharing among our teachers and help enhance their teaching practices."


James Kang, Assistant Chief Executive, Government Chief Information Office at the Infocomm Development Authority, said that the adoption of a cloud computing solution for MOE email and apps, "is in line with the government’s key criteria of ‘fit for purpose, value for money’ in infocomm procurement for the public sector.”

The new
system is built on Google's distributed cloud computing platform with higher scalability, redundancy and flexibility to cater for unforeseen increases in usage and future upgrades without the need to re-architect the entire system infrastructure.


Google Apps Edu will provide each teacher with more storage space of 7GB (the current email system only provides 110MB of disk space) and better, up-to-date features for their email as well as bring collaboration apps like Google Docs and Google Sites into the mix. The end result will be to increase productivity, share knowledge and enhance the teaching and learning environment in schools all across the nation. The rollout starts in November and should be completed by the end of the year, just in time for the new school year to start in January, 2010.

To read more about the Singapore MOE's announcement, click here. To check out Google Apps Education Edition, go to www.google.com/a/edu.

Posted by Dickson Seow, Google Singapore

Get timely updates on new features in Google Apps by subscribing to our RSS feed or email alerts.

URL: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.com/2009/09/singapores-ministry-of-education-and.html

[G] One place, one page

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Google LatLong: One place, one page


When you're looking for information about a restaurant down the street or a museum across the country, you sometimes find relevant information is scattered across the web. Instead of doing the research all over the web, wouldn’t it be great to see all the information for that place in... one place?

Starting today, you can do that with Place Pages for Google Maps. A Place Page is a web page for every place in the world, organizing all the world's information for that place. And we really mean every place: there are Place Pages for businesses, points of interest, transit stations, landmarks, and cities all over the world. To find a Place Page, click on "more info" in your Google Maps search results or "more info" in the info bubble on the map.

If I'm visiting Sydney, I can visit the Place Pages of popular destinations like the Opera House, Aquarium, and Garden Palace to see photos, find nearby public transit, and even discover related maps users have created with landmarks in Australia. For businesses, I can check out "More Details" to see where all the information is coming from or even edit to add my own information or reviews. For example, if I look at the Place Page for my favorite chocolate shop, Burdick Chocolate Cafe in Boston, I can see relevant photos, read all the user reviews, browse the menu, see their hours, and even find out what transit lines take me there.


We think Place Pages will make searching much easier (and hopefully more fun!) for our users, but we're also excited about what it means for business owners. By default, users looking for local businesses can easily view ratings for your business, reviews, related maps, find nearby transit options showing them how to get to you, and take a look at your business with a Street View preview - and it's all on one page. If you claim your listing with the Local Business Center, you'll be able to make sure there's even more rich content on the Place Page, like photos, YouTube videos, hours of operation, types of products or services offered, and several other categories you can submit. You can even add a coupon that will appear on your Place Page to really entice potential customers. By editing your Local Business Center listing your place page will automatically be updated.

Another nice benefit of Place Pages for Google Maps is that they will come with a friendly URL that will make it easy to remember and link to. For example, you'll find the San Francisco Place Page at google.com/places/us/california/san-francisco-city. We're working on rolling this out for all Place Pages; right now we include cities and most businesses; if your business isn't included just yet, we're working on it!

If you want to learn a bit more before trying it out for yourself, you can read our post on the Official Google Blog - then start exploring all sorts of places!

Posted by Avni Shah, Senior Product Manager, Place Pages team
URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2009/09/one-place-one-page.html

[G] Place Pages for Google Maps: There are places we remember!

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Official Google Blog: Place Pages for Google Maps: There are places we remember!

Google Maps is a great tool for exploring places — you can pan around the map, zoom in and see nearby places, look around in Street View and search for whatever you want. But what I always wanted to do is be able to get a clear understanding of what a place is all about. Instead of doing the research all over the web, wouldn’t it be great to see all the information about one place in...one place?

Starting today, you can do that on Place Pages for Google Maps. A Place Page is a webpage for every place in the world, organizing all the relevant information about it. By every place, we really mean *every* place — there are Place Pages for businesses, points of interest, transit stations, neighborhoods, landmarks and cities all over the world.

You can get to a Place Page by clicking on "more info" in search results, or by clicking "more info" in the mini-bubble. Now, instead of just getting a slightly bigger bubble, you'll get an entire page of rich details, like photos, videos, a Street View preview, nearby transit, reviews and related websites.


Here are some of my favorite places, and what you can discover about them using Place Pages:

Tartine Bakery: My favorite bakery in the world. The "Place Summary" section compiles voices from all over the web praising the desserts but warning you about the lines. The "Details" section aggregates material from over 500 authoritative sources; for example, you can find the menu from Zagat.com. The "Related Maps" sections shows user-created maps that include this bakery, such as this delicious California dessert map.



Yoda statue: One of my childhood heroes in real size! The "User Content" section shows excerpts from all over the web describing this hidden little gem; "Nearby Transit" helps you find the best way to get there by public transport; and there’s even some useful local ads in case you want to get one of these at home.

Tokyo: I've spent a lot of time here lately as it's home to part of the Place Page team. On the city's Place Page, you can find out the most popular hotels, parks and major landmarks in Tokyo, browse local photos and videos, see what other people are searching for and access maps about the city from all over the web.

Zurich Hauptbahnhof: I’ve traveled through the central train station in Zurich several times over the last year, visiting the local team that made Place Pages possible. Place pages for transit stations are particularly useful because they'll show you a list of all the lines serving that station, as well as provide a timetable of upcoming departures. 


As the Beatles' song in this post's title suggests, we want to make it easy to remember places: pages will come with a friendly URL that is easy to remember and link to under google.com/places. For example, the San Francisco Place Page will be found at google.com/places/us/california/san-francisco-city. Right now we include cities and most businesses, but we're working hard on bringing this to all Place Pages; right now we include cities and most businesses.

We want there to be a Place Page for every place in the world, but we might be missing a few places here and there. If you're a business owner, you can add or update your business details through the Local Business Center. This allows you to make sure your Place Page reflects the most accurate, authoritative and recent information about your business. And if you don’t have a business, but you discover a place that doesn’t have a Place Page, you can add it through community edits or Google Map Maker, depending on the country you’re in.

Whether you're searching for a great local florist or planning a trip across the globe, we hope Place Page for Google Maps makes your explorations easier and happier.

Posted by Lior Ron, Senior Product Manager, Place Page team
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/09/place-pages-for-google-maps-there-are.html

[G] View online files using the Google Docs Viewer

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Official Google Docs Blog: View online files using the Google Docs Viewer

Last year, we added PDF upload and view to Google Docs, and the "View" link for PDF attachments in Gmail. We also added support for viewing PowerPoint and TIFF files in Gmail this April. Feedback on these features has been very positive - viewing files right in your browser is fast, and it keeps your downloads folder clean. Plus, it spares you the hassle of saving your files to the machine you're using, which could be a shared or public computer.

Starting today, we're opening up this technology to all webmasters and blog owners with the Google Docs viewer. All you have to do is give the URL of a PDF, Powerpoint or TIFF document to us and we'll display it directly in your browser with no download required - like this. For complete documentation, and a form to generate code for embedded viewers (example below), check out our webpage.



Are you a Box.net user? You'll be happy to know you can use this service to view documents stored within your Box - just add the Google Docs Viewer OpenBox Service to your account.

Enjoy!

Posted by: Jesse Kinkead, Software Engineer
URL: http://googledocs.blogspot.com/2009/09/view-online-files-using-google-docs.html

[G] Calling All Creative Types...

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YouTube Blog: Calling All Creative Types...

We'd like to introduce you to the Creator's Corner, a new hub for aspiring video-makers. This section of the site brings together all the information a budding artiste could want to know about making videos, including:
We think of this as just the beginning: we're currently working on setting up some Webinars to help you take your video-making to the next level, and we're seeking out some of the most accomplished video producers on YouTube to grill them on the techniques, inspiration and secrets behind their videos. (First up: read about tilt-shifting and timelapse in Keith Loutit's "Metal Heart" video.)

In addition, we're eager to expand our badge gallery, so if you have an awesome graphic you'd like to share with others to help them advertise their YouTube presence on their own site, email it to ytcreators@gmail.com and we'll consider it for inclusion on the page. If we do add your graphic to the Corner, we'll be sure to credit you there and send you a T-shirt as thanks.

So please give the site a whirl and let us know what you think -- and what you'd like to see -- in the comments below or in the forum.

Mia Quagliarello, Community Manager, recently watched "The Old City of Dubrovnik."


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/200R0gz0Hp8/calling-all-creative-types.html

[G] Fall In Love With Motion Charts

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Google Analytics Blog: Fall In Love With Motion Charts


Have you used Motion Charts yet? If not, it's a little like playing an instrument. It takes a little practice, but once you get the hang of it, it's the best thing you ever did - fun and informative and you'll want to do it daily. Create them and watch them reveal patterns you weren't aware of in your keyword activity or some other area that is important to your site.

We've written a few posts on Motion Charts and made a video, and now we wanted to refer you to a great article called How To Use Google Analytics Motion Charts To Maximize Results, on Searchengineland.com, written by one of our Authorized Consultants, Daniel Waisberg from easynet search marketing in Israel.

Daniel discusses both how to use Motion Charts and also what metrics to designate as which elements of the chart to best use the feature for optimizing your online marketing. In his example, Daniel chooses to have conversion values as the size and color of the bubbles so you can easily spot them for optimization opportunities. For instance, for an e-commerce site and a motion chart showing keywords with the y-axis as visits and the x-axis as bounce rate, Daniel says:
Ecommerce conversion rate (color of bubble) shows the conversion rate for a keyword. This is important since you might have high converting keywords that are not receiving enough traffic. Look for red-small bubbles located close to the x-axis—these keywords should get priority optimization treatment. Tip: focus on these and related keywords on your PPC campaigns.

Revenue (size of bubble) shows the amount of money this keyword is driving to your website. Look for big-blue bubbles—this is a signal that a keyword brings lots of money but could bring even more if it converted better. Tip: optimize the pages related to these keywords to improve conversion.
Daniel also goes into detail about how to share motion charts with others. If you're ready to try Motion Charts today, his article is your next step. Then, for more inspiration, here are a few more examples of using them.

Posted by Jeff Gillis, Google Analytics Team
URL: http://analytics.blogspot.com/2009/09/fall-in-love-with-motion-charts.html

[G] Map Maker graduation, Part III

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Google LatLong: Map Maker graduation, Part III


Our ability to explore maps relies on having access to quality data. Much of our world has yet to have access to accurate digital mapping data. This is why we originally created Google Map Maker, and why we're excited today to announce 19 new countries and territories to that have made the leap from being drawn on Google Map Maker to being pushed on Google Maps:
Algeria, Angola, Congo, Faroe Islands, French Guiana, Guyana, Haiti, Kazakhstan, Liberia, Morocco, Namibia, New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Suriname, Swaziland, Tunisia, Turks and Caicos Islands, Western Sahara
as well as 11 that were added in July:
Bahamas, Bermuda, British Indian Ocean Territory, Fiji, Greenland, Laos, Mali, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Pitcairn Islands, Saint Helena

Almaty, Kazakhstan

Paramaribo, Suriname

Georgetown, Guyana

Noumea, New Caledonia

Thanks to all of the wonderful Map Maker contributors. We hope more of you will join us in mapping your world. Here's a full list of Map Maker countries now on Maps.

Posted by Anand Srinivasan, Vishwajith Krishnamurthy and Jessica Pfund, Map Maker Team
URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2009/09/map-maker-graduation-part-iii.html

[G] Announcing Project 10^100 idea themes

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Official Google Blog: Announcing Project 10^100 idea themes

Late last year we announced Project 10^100, a call for ideas to help as many people as possible, and a program to bring the best of those ideas to life with a total of $10 million. We hoped to capture the imagination of people around the world and offer a way to bring their best ideas to fruition. We were overwhelmed by the response — you sent us more than 150,000 ideas (approximately 10^5.2) in more than 25 languages and it took more than 3,000 Googlers in offices around the world to review the submissions. (The review process took us much longer than we expected and we appreciate your patience!)

Some ideas we received suggested broad areas of investment, others were very specific technology or implementation proposals, and many of the ideas shared overlapping elements. So rather than posting individual idea submissions, we've decided to do something a little different. We've pooled similar ideas into a set of 16 top idea themes aimed at addressing some important common goals, from making government more transparent to driving innovation in public transport. Every theme has different possible implementations and we intend to consider all reasonable possibilities. But we need your help.

Over the next two weeks we'll be gathering your votes to help inform an advisory board that will then choose up to five winning ideas that will receive funding. After that, we'll present the finalists and ask for proposals from individuals or organizations that can implement these ideas.

It has been a long road for those of us who have worked on this from the beginning. Although it took a lot longer than we first planned, we're pleased with the outcome. In the end, we followed the tried-and-true Google method of "launch and iterate." We enjoyed going through so many interesting proposals and adapted to the massive volume of ideas. We are incredibly proud to be able to put these 16 ideas in front of you to see what you think. Let the voting begin!

Posted by the Project 10^100 Team
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/09/announcing-project-10100-idea-themes.html

[G] Day in the Life of a Docs Student

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Official Google Docs Blog: Day in the Life of a Docs Student

(Cross-posted on the Google students blog)

The Google Docs team is getting ready for back to school. We've been doing our homework this summer to make your school year go a little smoother. Today we're launching a handful of features that will benefit both students and teachers. Speaking from experience, as students ourselves, we know that these features will come in handy on any given day. Check out the schedule below to see how.

Time
Schedule
9:00am
Spanish Literature [Bldg200-253]

Writing essays about Gabriel García Márquez is hard enough in English; try it in Spanish. At least now I can make sure I'm on the right track by defining and translating Spanish words.

Like any research essay, I have to double space the document and cite my sources. I use footnotes to cite sources. They are automatically numbered so I don't have to keep track of them and they sit in the margins for easy reference. As of today, I can even print footnotes as endnotes, consolidated on separate pages at the end of my document.

10:00am
Gym break

I keep track of my daily workout progress using a variety of Docs templates. Today I'll be using the Runner's Log:
11:00am
Hiking Club [Student Union]

The other club officers and I make sure that we cover all important topics by collaborating on an agenda outline before each weekly meeting. As the secretary, I also take notes on the outline so I like being able to customize how the list is formatted.

The officers also work together to make sure our website is up to date. With Google Sites we can each edit the site when necessary without learning html. My favorite feature is the ability to embed maps, documents, and calendars directly into a page.
12:00pm
Lunch

I keep up to date on the go by viewing and editing my docs on a mobile phone.
1:00pm
Probabilistic Systems Analysis Lecture [Bldg32-123]

This class moves pretty fast. My friends and I sit near each other and take notes on a single Google Doc to make sure we don't miss a thing. With the new equation editor feature, it's much easier to read and understand each others' equation notations.
And whenever I walk into class a little late, I can just do a revision comparison of our shared notes document to see exactly what I've missed.

2:00pm
Solid State Chemistry Tutorial [Bldg5-320]

In order to lead this tutorial, I often put together some slides beforehand and share them with my students. Now that Google Docs Presentations supports subscripts and superscripts, it's even easier to make and edit these slides.

Want to try out these features in your routine? Find some more detailed information about the features here.

Posted by: Rita Chen and Stephanie Vezich, Google Docs Summer Interns
URL: http://googledocs.blogspot.com/2009/09/day-in-life-of-docs-student.html

[G] The Iterative Web App: 'Move' and 'Enhanced Refresh'

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Official Google Mobile Blog: The Iterative Web App: 'Move' and 'Enhanced Refresh'

On April 7th, we announced a new version of Gmail for mobile for iPhone and Android-powered devices. Among the improvements was a complete redesign of the web application's underlying code which allows us to more rapidly develop and release new features that users have been asking for, as explained in our first post. We'd like to introduce The Iterative Webapp, a series where we will continue to release features for Gmail for mobile. Today: 'Move' and 'Enhanced Refresh.'

Last week we released two new features which can save you clicks when using web-based Gmail on an iPhone or Android-powered device.

The first one is 'Move', which you can find under 'More' in the Floaty Bar. The 'Move' function lets you label and archive a message in a single step. So as soon as you 'move' a conversation to a certain label, that email will disappear from your Inbox and show up under that label. We introduced this feature to Gmail for your PC earlier this year, and now we're making it available for your mobile phone as well.

Another improvement we made is 'Enhanced Refresh.' With this feature, your Gmail inbox auto-refreshes when you switch back to Gmail from another tab or application. And if your phone goes to sleep while Gmail is open, it will refresh when you wake it up.

To try out Gmail for mobile, visit gmail.com in your mobile browser. This version of Gmail for mobile supports iPhone/iPod touch OS 2.2.1 or above, as well as all Android-powered devices, and is available in US English only. To make it easy to access your Gmail account, try creating a home screen link.


by Heaven Kim, Product Marketing Manager, Google Mobile
URL: http://googlemobile.blogspot.com/2009/09/iterative-web-app-move-and-enhanced.html

[G] Touch-ups for your ad units

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Inside AdSense: Touch-ups for your ad units

You may remember that last year, we added arrows to the bottom of cost-per-click (CPC) ad units. These arrows allow users to browse through additional relevant ads, helping them find exactly they're looking for.

We've been testing slight updates to the look of these arrows, and our experiments have shown improvements in the user experience. As a result, we'll soon be making a few minor aesthetic changes, including darkening the arrows to make them more visible and orienting all arrows to point left and right. In addition, to help users understand what the arrows do, hovering over the arrows will soon show the labels 'previous ads' and 'next ads'. You'll see these changes appear in CPC ad units in all languages gradually over the next few days.

Posted by Amy Wu - AdSense Product Manager
URL: http://adsense.blogspot.com/2009/09/touch-ups-for-your-ad-units.html

[G] Google Mobile App for Windows Mobile gets My Location and more

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Official Google Mobile Blog: Google Mobile App for Windows Mobile gets My Location and more

It's easier and faster than ever to search Google using your Windows Mobile phone. Just visit m.google.com to download the latest version of Google Mobile App, which includes these new features:
  • My Location. Get local results without typing your location. Once you see the blue My Location dot with your current location below the search box, simply search for a local query, for example "italian restaurant", and the search results will contain local business results along with web results.

    To protect your privacy, location is encrypted when sent to the server, and only your most recent location is stored so that successive searches can use the same location. You can disable My Location at any time in the "Advanced Options" screen.
  • Google Suggest. Reduce typing time by selecting suggestions to complete your queries. You will also see URL suggestions, which bring you directly to a web page, skipping the search results page entirely. Try typing "facebook" to see this kind of suggestion.
  • Search with Maps. If you have installed Google Maps, type a local query and wait for suggestions. Select the suggestion with the red pin next to it to launch your search inside Google Maps.


To download the new version of Google Mobile App, visit m.google.com from your phone.

Posted by Craig Wilkinson, Software Engineer
URL: http://googlemobile.blogspot.com/2009/09/google-mobile-app-for-windows-mobile.html