Saturday, May 14, 2011

[G] Webinar: Three Stages of Digital Marketing And Measurement - Sign Up Now!

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Official Google CPG Blog: Webinar: Three Stages of Digital Marketing And Measurement - Sign Up Now!

An Obsession with Advertising, Accountability & Awesomeness.

A guest post by Avinash Kaushik

I am so incredibly impressed with the rapid evolution of advertising and marketing possibilities around us. Offline, online, social-- there are so many things to do, and so little time (and budget!).

One of the absolute delights of online marketing (regardless of type) is the amount of accountability you can bring to your marketing budgets. How many people looked at your ad in a magazine and took action? You can measure this for your digital display ads. How many potential customers how were actively looking for cars, saw your ad on TV, and then went to your destination? You can measure this for your search ads. How often do prospects listen to your radio ads completely and then take engage with you? You can measure this for your YouTube ads.

I could keep going. It is so exciting what we can measure, regardless of the online channels we use, or the measurement tools in which we have access.

And yet, it is heartbreaking how little we bring all this awesomeness to bear upon our digital efforts. So much of our marketing is simply replicating our offline advertising online. And what is particularly heartbreaking to me, the author of two books on web analytics, is how we bring our low expectations of offline measurement to our online efforts.

So let's change this. Together.

On May 19th I am conducting a webinar that will share my point of view on three stages of digital marketing and measurement. [Sign up for the webinar
here. Seats are limited!]

Here are three three phases of accountability and awesomeness...

The toddler phase: Here most of our measurement is based on simply response based metrics. This is far more accountable than other channels, but there is so much more we can do and with such little actual effort. We'll cover conversion tracking (simple one page tagged and you get so much!) and how a couple clicks get you the joy of call tracking data for your mobile search advertising campaigns.

The rebellious youth phase: CTR? Sure. CPC? No problem. CPA? Done! (If you don't know what these are we'll cover them, too!) But how about a holistic understanding of the impact on your business of all your online marketing? No, not just the one big conversion, but all the micro-conversions? This is such a delight. You develop the complete impact of your acquisition strategy and are better able to balance your marketing portfolio. Trust me, you want to do this. Every day.

The digital ninja phase: Macro and micro conversions? Check. Revenue? Yep. Economic value? When you hear OMG, know that it was created for this concept. The most glorious thing any Marketer can do, and the CMO and VP get, is a robust understanding of not just the activity (clicks, conversions et. al.), but also the value created for the business (including revenue). This is how the good get to the great (and we'll cover the approaches you can use to get there!)

So come
join us on May 19th for an incredible hour and half where we’ll talk digital marketing, measurement, and strategies to kick things up a notch. And yes, bring awesomeness to everything we do.

See you there.


[G] Because Data Beats Opinion: Introducing Think Insights with Google

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Official Google CPG Blog: Because Data Beats Opinion: Introducing Think Insights with Google

It’s one of our company’s guiding principles that data beats opinion. And as such, we’ve put a lot of effort into asking some interesting questions -- How do new mothers use the Internet? When do people really start their holiday shopping? What trends typify today’s Hispanic web user? -- and answering them with concrete information.

We’re now pleased to share this knowledge at Think Insights with Google, the website where we’ll be publishing our learnings and insights about digital marketing trends. From papers to case studies to videos, Think Insights' content represents the on-going work we’re doing to better understand how web users are embracing new media platforms, and how marketers are adapting to this changing terrain. We’ll be updating this site frequently, so if you'd like to keep up with our latest news, sign up here for your monthly Think Insights fix.

Enjoy and happy data-diving,

The Think Insights Team

[G] New ways to discover great apps on Android Market

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Official Google Mobile Blog: New ways to discover great apps on Android Market

We’ve seen tremendous growth in Android Market lately. With over 200,000 apps supporting over 300 Android devices, we’ve had 4.5 billion applications installed to date. But with so many apps available, how do you find the ones you really want? Whether you’re looking for the most popular apps, hot new apps, or just the very best apps available, we want to help make sure that you find what you’re looking for.

Today, we’re excited to announce 5 new features for Android Market focused on helping you find apps you’ll love.

  • New top app charts - We’ve revamped our top app charts to be fresher and country-specific, so you get the most current, relevant results. We’ve also added top new free, top new paid, and top grossing lists, all right on the Android Market home page.   
  • Editors’ Choice - These are some of the very best apps available for Android, as chosen by the Android Market staff. They span everything from games to productivity and beyond.   
  • Top Developers - We’re also recognizing those developers creating the highest quality, most popular, and most notable apps available on Android Market. They’ll get a special icon on our Android Market website, appearing wherever the developer name is shown, starting today for an initial set of over 150 developers.
  • Better related apps - On the left side of an app page, you’ll now see two groups of related apps: apps frequently browsed by people who viewed this app, and apps that people tend to install alongside this app. For example, people who view ScoreMobile, my favorite sports score app, often also view other sports score apps, while those who install ScoreMobile tend to also install apps for specific sports leagues or teams. We’ll also show you related apps once you decide to install an app.
  • Trending apps - Finally, we’ve added a new section to the Android Market homepage showing trending apps – those apps that are quickly growing in daily installs. Look here to stay ahead of the curve and find new apps as they get hot.
We hope you find these features helpful as you explore the many greats apps available on Android Market. These new features are available now on, and will be coming soon to Android Market on phones and tablets.

Posted by Fernando Delgado, Product Manager, Android Market

[G] Introducing “News near you” on Google News for mobile

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Google News Blog: Introducing “News near you” on Google News for mobile

Posted by Navneet Singh, Product Manager - Google News

Google News for mobile lets you keep up with the latest news, wherever you are. Today we’re excited to announce a new feature in the U.S. English edition called “News near you” that surfaces news relevant to the city you’re in and surrounding areas.

Location-based news first became available in Google News in 2008, and today there’s a local section for just about any city, state or country in the world with coverage from thousands of sources. We do local news a bit differently, analyzing every word in every story to understand what location the news is about and where the source is located.

Now you can find local news on your smartphone. Here’s an example of a “News near you” mobile section automatically created for someone in Topeka, Kansas:

To use this feature, visit Google News from the browser of your Android smartphone or iPhone. If this is the first time you are visiting Google News on your phone since this feature became available, a pop-up will ask you if you want to share your location. If you say yes, news relevant to your location will appear in a new section called “News near you” which will be added at the bottom of the homepage. You can reorganize the sections later via the personalization page.

You can turn off the feature at any time either by hiding the section in your personalization settings or by adjusting your mobile browser settings. Please visit the Help Center for further details.

So, go to from your smartphone and get the latest news from wherever you are.

[G] What can 48 minds create in 48 hours?

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YouTube Blog: What can 48 minds create in 48 hours?

A new big idea in online entertainment.

Watch the first installment of IdeaJam, a new web series produced by Katalyst and Intel, where Ashton Kutcher brings together 48 filmmakers, content creators, and social media experts and challenges them to break the traditional bounds of storytelling.

Using technology, digital video, and social media, these creative minds are engaging with the online community during the development of 6 new entertainment concepts, deepening the connections between video and viewer.

Results are as varied as they are entertaining:
  • Watch Crash@MyPad as “Mr. Social” attempts to survive in LA for 24 hours on nothing but social media and the kindness of strangers.
  • Ever wonder what would happen if Facebook and had a baby? Check out MatchMyFriend, a dating service based on friend recommendations, which actually allows you to watch the live streams of your friends’ first dates.
  • Or perhaps you’ve had a recent unpleasant Facebook experience and need to confront a friend about his unflattering post on your wall? Look no further than Flame Court, the online court for online disputes.
In the next IdeaJam, Katalyst and Intel partner with renowned educator Alan November to explore ways that technology and creativity can be used to create an ideal classroom, so subscribe to the channel to see what’s to come.

Emily Wright, Display Project Manager, recently watched "Opening Ceremony Blog - Spike Jonze Presents: Lil Buck and Yo-Yo Ma."


[G] New Google Analytics - Overview Reports Overview

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Google Analytics Blog: New Google Analytics - Overview Reports Overview

This is part of our series of posts highlighting the new Google Analytics. The new version of Google Analytics is currently available in beta to all Analytics users. And follow Google Analytics on Twitter for the latest updates.

This week we’re going a bit meta with an overview of the new Overview reports in the new Google Analytics. Overview reports were part of the old version of Analytics, of course, but we’ve made some changes to help your analysis.

Anatomy of the Overview Report
Each overview report consists of three sections. There's a timeline graph, some aggregate metrics, and a set of reports.

Whats inside of each of these sections depends on which report you’re looking at. For example, the Visitor Overview shows a graph of visits and metrics like New vs. Returning visitors, while Content Overview shows metrics like pageviews and average time on page.

The Graph
We’ve made a few changes to the graphs in the new Google Analytics, and we'll share them here. You can now make adjustments to the graphs you see in Google Analytics from the buttons on the top right of the graph:
  • Switch a graph between Line Chart and Motion Chart
  • Graph different metrics: Select from the dropdown or the scorecard
Metrics dropdown
Metrics Scorecard
  • Compare two metrics: Graph an additional metric for comparison

  • Graph By: Change graph from between Monthly, Weekly, Daily, and even Hourly for some reports

The bottom section of an overview reports lets you look through a subset of the reports available in that section. You can flip through these reports to see where you want to start your analysis. In the Traffic Sources Overview, we can start by looking at a report of Keywords.

From here we can go view the full report or look at another report, like Referral Sources:

Intelligence Overview
Google Analytics Intelligence automatically searches your website traffic to look for anomalies. When it finds something that's out of the ordinary it surfaces this as an alert. You can also setup your own alerts by defining custom alerts.

Now you can feel like the president of the principality of Analytica with your very own Intelligence Overview report.

The Intelligence Overview report shows you all of your automatic alerts (daily, weekly, and monthly) at a glance. From the Intelligence Overview, you can click on Details to see a graph of the alert and go directly into the GA report. You can also add or review an annotation right from the pop-up graph.

I hope you enjoyed this overview of Overview Reports. Please continue to send us feedback on the new Google Analytics. Stay tuned for next week’s installment in New Google Analytics series.

Posted by Trevor Claiborne, Google Analytics Team

[G] Issue affecting Analytics data for April

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Google Analytics Blog: Issue affecting Analytics data for April

Late last night we discovered an issue in Google Analytics that caused reports with data from April 2011 using custom reports, advanced segments, or secondary dimensions to return 0 visits. Our team has been hard at work since then, and have found the cause and are taking steps to resolve the issue.

We will update this post as we work to resolve this issue. As always, you can visit the Google Analytics Status Dashboard to see the current status of Google Analytics.

Update 5/13/11 3:45 PM PST
April data affected by this issue has been restored for all days after and including April 20th.

Update 5/11/11 10:30 AM PST
We want to reiterate that no data was lost due to this issue, and we’re working hard to make the April data fully available in your Analytics reports. Our current timeline for restoring full functionality for April data is approximately 12 days, by May 23rd. We’re doing what we can to shorten this period. We’re restoring the data day by day so you will see it come in to your account over time and not all at once. Keep in mind, that you can view the affected April data through the standard reports.

Secondly, we’ve seen some comments about Fast Access mode and its relation to the issue. Fast Access mode is a change, in name only, to how we label a sampled report to help better explain why sampling happens in Google Analytics. This change was not responsible for the issue with April’s data.

We’ll continue to update this post with developments we work to completely resolve this issue.

Posted by Trevor Claiborne, Google Analytics Team

[G] One week left to Doodle 4 AdSense

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Inside AdSense: One week left to Doodle 4 AdSense

With only one week left to submit your very own AdSense logo for our Doodle 4 AdSense showcase, we wanted to highlight the amazing submissions we’ve gotten so far. Take a look at our Facebook album featuring entries from creative publishers across the world. We’ll be posting the submissions as they come in waves for the next few weeks, so keep checking back for more awesome doodles!

Inspired to create your own? Get doodling and submit your logo before May 20th. We’ll post all submissions that adhere to our Terms and Conditions on the Facebook page, so the world can see what AdSense looks like to you.

Posted by Katrina Kurnit - Inside AdSense team

[G] Site maintenance on Saturday, May 14

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Inside AdSense: Site maintenance on Saturday, May 14

This Saturday, our engineers will be performing routine site maintenance from 9am to 5pm PDT. Your stats reporting may be delayed at that time, but we'll continue serving ads to your pages and tracking your clicks, impressions, and earnings as usual. Your ad targeting won't be affected and you will be able to log-in to your account.

We've converted the maintenance start time for a few cities around the world:

London - 5pm Saturday

Alexandria - 6pm Saturday

Hyderabad - 9:30pm Saturday
Jakarta - 11pm Saturday
Perth - 12am Sunday

To learn more about what goes on during these maintenance periods, check out this Inside AdSense post.

Posted by Katrina Kurnit - Inside AdSense Team

[G] How integrating new ad sizes helped increase revenue by 165%

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Inside AdSense: How integrating new ad sizes helped increase revenue by 165%

In 1997, founder Michael Robinson decided to pursue his passion of helping people discover their true career directions. He initially wanted to go into high schools and work directly with students, but decided instead to start a website so that he could keep his day job. Today, helps high school students, college students, and adults alike discover their optimal career paths and learn how to start careers or make career changes.

In 2007, Michael and's top graphic designer realized that 2.5 million visitors per year weren't purchasing any products. "These visitors were clearly looking for something, but it was not anything we offered," says Michael, so they decided to give AdSense a try. Today, AdSense is on over 95% of’s pages and the site receives over 5.5 million visitors a year. The revenue from Google AdSense now helps fund’s Research and Development efforts, IT expansion, as well as special marketing projects that they always wanted to try but could never afford.

Getting more out of AdSense

Following advice from the AdSense team, Michael decided to update his AdSense ad units with the goal of increasing performance. Instead of the three 120 x 600 skyscrapers that had been running one on top another down the right side of each page, Michael began running one 160x600 wide skyscraper on the left column, one 300 x 250 medium rectangle in the center, integrated into his content below the fold, and one 160 x 600 wide skyscraper on the right column. Michael also changed the color scheme of the ad units to match the color scheme of his webpages. Initially, Michael made these changes to 75% of his pages. Within one month, his AdSense for content revenue increased 80%.

The initial revenue growth saw in the first month inspired Michael to take the time to implement the same changes on more of his pages. Today, Michael has optimized 99% of his pages and increased his AdSense for content revenue by 165%.
"The best news," says Michael, "is that since we have made the optimization changes, our Google AdSense revenue has been setting new records every month."

Sign in to your account to upgrade your ad units like today!

Posted by Jane Brinkley - AdSense Optimization team

[G] Got 2 minutes? Learn how to allow and block ads

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Inside AdSense: Got 2 minutes? Learn how to allow and block ads

Last week, we walked you through the Performance reports tab of the new AdSense interface. In the final two videos of this series, we wanted to highlight the key controls available in your account so that you’re empowered to make smart decisions about the ads that appear on your site. Take a look at the videos below to learn more about the ad review center and the additional features that enable you to allow and block ads:

We hope you’ve enjoyed our six videos walking you through key activities in your account, and that it has enabled you to be more comfortable with the new AdSense interface. If you haven’t started using the new interface yet, we hope you'll check out these demo videos and give it a try today!

Posted by Katrina Kurnit - Inside AdSense Team

[G] Technical Details of the Blueberry Release

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The WebM Open Media Project Blog: Technical Details of the Blueberry Release

The following text assumes the reader has prior knowledge about video codecs and hardware designs.

We reached the aforementioned +0.82 dB PSNR gains by adding the following features to the encoder:
  • Improved encoding decisions and added more coding options at macroblock level
  • Enabled multiple motion vectors per macroblock (Split MV mode)
  • Added preference of “nearest”, “near” and “zero” type macroblocks that are less expensive to code than others
  • Added support for up to two reference frames in motion search (immediately previous and Golden frame)
  • Added deblocking filter macroblock mode adaptivity support
  • Added ¼ pixel precision motion estimation at 1080p resolution (previously supported only up to 720p)
  • Increased the amount of token probability tracking counters (enables more efficient entropy coding)
In addition, we added support for a programmable segment map, which enables psychovisual quality optimizations and defining region-of-interests. This means we can for example code the foreground objects (i.e. people) with a better quality (smaller quantizer) than the static background. We also added new hooks to the hardware that allows us to improve the quality of the encoder by later firmware upgrades that optmize our cost function algorithms - even after the chip has been manufactured.

In terms of silicon usage, Blueberry costs 13% more logic gates than Anthill, while the internal memory requirement remains unchanged. We optimized the maximum attainable clock frequency from Anthill’s 376 MHz to 392 MHz (TSMC 65nm, LP), which allows the chip manufacturer to get some more fps, which can be useful if you are doing multiple simultaneous encodes or running in a slow-motion mode (i.e. VGA 200 fps).

Comparing the quality difference between Anthill and Blueberry, we measured their average PSNR and SSIM quality over 46 test sequences and at a wide quantizer range. A few example results are shown below (positive numbers mean Blueberry was better):

SequenceResolutionPSNR [dB] SSIM
table qcif+0.86+0.009

As our focus in the improvement work has been on the video conferencing use case, let’s dig a bit deeper there. The following graph shows PSNR quality metrics for a 720p video call, comparing the H1 Blueberry release to Anthill and libvpx Bali release in different complexity modes (higher is better).

From the graph it can be seen that the Blueberry release encodes the video conference content at the same quality using up to 30% less bits than Anthill. It also beats libvpx’s simplest real-time setting at a much lower bitrate than before.

While more improvements are on the way for the third release of the H1 encoder, the current performance is already very competitive - and the hardware now comes with hooks for further software-based optimizations.

Aki Kuusela is Engineering Manager of the WebM Project hardware team in Oulu, Finland.

[G] “Blueberry” VP8 Hardware Encoder IP Released

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The WebM Open Media Project Blog: “Blueberry” VP8 Hardware Encoder IP Released

"Blueberry," the second release of the H1 VP8 hardware encoder, is now available through the WebM Project hardware page. Due to the short growing season and abundant light during the summer, Nordic blueberries are exceptionally sweet and rich with vitamins. The Blueberry encoder is not too bad either!

In Blueberry we focused primarily on improving the encoder for video calling use, as many of the semiconductor companies that have licensed the H1 encoder plan to use it in these use cases. Compared to Anthill, the average measured PSNR improvement was 0.82 dB, while SSIM figures were improved by 0.011. This is also shown in the following chart for 720p video call content, where Blueberry achieves the same quality as Anthill with 25% less bits!

In the next release, we plan to further improve the compression rate at the low bitrate range, as well as focus on new features such as two-pass encoding and visual optimization using segmentation maps. The third release is planned to be available at the end of Q2 2011.

The H1 IP has been licensed already to over twenty semiconductor companies, and we are looking forward to sharing the technology with new partners.

For licensing details about the H1, see our hardware page. For those interested in technical details, please keep reading here.

Aki Kuusela is Engineering Manager of the WebM Project hardware team in Oulu, Finland.

[G] Make beautiful interactive maps even faster with new additions to the Fusion Tables API

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Official Google Research Blog: Make beautiful interactive maps even faster with new additions to the Fusion Tables API

Posted by Rebecca Shapley, Jayant Madhavan, Rod McChesney, and Kathryn Hurley, Fusion Tables team

Google Fusion Tables is a modern data management and publishing web application that makes it easy to host, manage, collaborate on, visualize, and publish data tables online. Since we first launched Fusion Tables almost two years ago, we've seen tremendous interest and usage from dozens of areas, from journalists to scientists to open-data entrepreneurs, and have been excited to see the innovative applications that our users have been able to rapidly build and publish.

We've been working hard to enrich what Fusion Tables offers for customization and control of visual presentation. This past fall we added the ability to style the colors and icons of mapped data with a few clicks in the Fusion Tables web app. This spring we made it easy to use HTML and customize what users see in the info window that appears after a click on the map. We’ve enjoyed seeing the impressive visualizations you have created. Some, like the Guardian’s map of deprivation in the UK, were created strictly within the web app, while apps like the Bay Citizen’s Bike Accident tracker and the Texas Tribune’s Census 2010 interactive map take advantage of the Fusion Tables SQL API to do even more customization.

Of course, it’s not always convenient to do everything through a web interface, and today we’re delighted to invite trusted testers to try out the new Fusion Tables Styling and Info Window API. Now developers will be able to set a table’s map colors and info windows with code.

Even better, this new Styling and Info Window API will be part of the Google APIs Console. The Google APIs Console helps you manage projects and teams, provision access quotas, and view analytics and metrics on your API usage. It also offers sample code that supports the OAuth 2.0 client key management flow you need to build secure apps for your users.

So if you've been looking for a way to programmatically create highly-customizable map visualizations from data tables, check out our new APIs and let us know what you think! To become a trusted tester, please apply to join the Google Group and tell us a little bit about how you use the Fusion Tables API.

Friday, May 13, 2011

[G] Celebrating 150 years of MIT

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Official Google Blog: Celebrating 150 years of MIT

2011 marks the 150th anniversary of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, founded to speed along America’s industrial progress through scientific innovation. MIT has been at the forefront of computer science with key advancements in the field, like the invention of core memory, the first file sharing system and RSA, the algorithm for public key encryption. MIT and Google share many of the same goals and philosophies, and as part of MIT's 150th anniversary celebration, we wanted to take stock of the many ways we've been working together.

More than 500 MIT graduates work at Google, in Boston and beyond—on Android, Chrome, crisis relief efforts and more. At our Cambridge, Mass., office—just down the road from MIT’s campus—and at the newly acquired ITA office, you can spot many MIT alumni Googlers proudly sporting red and gray in celebration of the milestone anniversary.

We love our Googler MIT grads, but our partnership with the university goes beyond an alumni relationship: we also support the university’s mission of discovery and innovation in the sciences. Recently, we gave a focused research award to CSAIL to further research in computer science and artificial intelligence. We also partnered with researchers at the MIT Media Lab on Konbit, a service that helps communities rebuild themselves after a crisis. In the same lines, we’re sponsoring MIT Next Lab, a group that researches and develops ways in which people can use mobile platforms to solve global and economic issues. And finally, as part of their 150th anniversary celebration, MIT announced a major Intelligence Initiative (I²) that we’re helping to support. Beyond the pure scientific goals, it’s hoped that this research will lead to practical applications in the form of more intelligent systems and software that will benefit society broadly

In addition, we have close relationships with some of MIT's faculty, like Hal Abelson, Professor of Computer Science and a member of Google's Visiting Faculty program, who has used our technology to conduct education outreach. He started the Young Android Project in 2007 and helped design App Inventor, which launched in 2010. Hal also teaches classes to non-engineers about building Android apps.

This summer we’re looking forward to welcoming high school students into our Boston office through the MIT MITES program to introduce a whole new crop of future scientists to the joys of science and engineering. Plus, 50 MIT students will join Google as interns this summer alone.

Although MIT was established more than 100 years before the Internet was invented, the institution has continued to remain a world leader in technological research, development and advancement. We’re excited to celebrate the university on its anniversary, and look forward to a continued and strong relationship for the next century to come.

Posted by Steve Vinter, Engineering Director, Google Boston

[G] 3D dreams in the modern browser

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Google Chrome Blog: 3D dreams in the modern browser

[cross-posted on the Official Google Blog]

Some of the most compelling experiences on the web come when inspirations of old are brought to life with modern technologies. Last August, “The Wilderness Downtown” brought the wistful feeling of nostalgia to the browser as you run down the streets where you used to live in an HTML5 music experience based on the Arcade Fire song “We Used to Wait.”

3 Dreams of Black” is our newest music experience for the web browser, written and directed by Chris Milk and developed with a few folks here at Google. The song, “Black,” comes off the album ROME, presented by Danger Mouse & Daniele Luppi, featuring Jack White and Norah Jones on vocals and soon to be released on the record label Parlophone/EMI. ROME is inspired by Italian soundtracks from the 1960s and the classic Italian Western genre. In fact, the album was recorded with the original orchestra from Italian director Sergio Leone’s westerns (remember The Good, The Bad & The Ugly?).

“3 Dreams of Black” is a visual voyage through three dream worlds, told through rich 2D drawings and animations that are interspersed with interactive 3D sequences. At various points in this web experience, you can take control with your computer’s mouse and guide your journey through the unfolding narrative. You can even contribute to the dream by creating your own relics using a 3D model creator. Some of the best user creations will be integrated into the experience and become a part of others’ “3 Dreams” exploration.

In “3 Dreams in Black”, the browser is transformed into a theater for these lucid virtual dreams through WebGL, a new technology which brings hardware-accelerated 3D graphics to the browser. With WebGL in modern browsers like Google Chrome, you can interact with 3D experiences with no need for additional software. For curious web developers out there, we’ve made all the code completely open and available so that you can dig in, have a look around and try it out for yourself.

Because “3 Dreams in Black” is an experiment built with the latest web technologies, it requires a browser that supports WebGL like Chrome, and Windows Vista / Mac OS X 10.6 or above to help ensure that your computer has up-to-date graphics drivers. For those of you who may have hardware constraints, we’ve put together a short video that we hope will provide a glimpse into this unique experience. To explore these dreamscapes, visit

Posted by Aaron Koblin, Google Data Arts Team

[G] A flock of apps storming the Chrome Web Store

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Google Chrome Blog: A flock of apps storming the Chrome Web Store

They are coming. They are angry. Protect your pigs.

Angry Birds, the most popular game for mobile devices, has arrived in the Chrome Web Store. Built using the latest technologies, Angry Birds is as much fun on the web as on your phone. In addition, you can try beating the new web-only, Chrome-inspired levels.

While firing up that slingshot, you may also want to try out some of the other apps that were recently added to the store. To keep up with the world of finance, you can install the Reuters and Fortune 500 apps. ESPN Cricinfo brings the latest cricket news straight to your new tab page. For the photo enthusiasts among you, LiveShare helps aggregate your friends’ photos from events you attended together.

In addition to the new apps added today, popular apps such as Springpad and Graphicly have been updated to work offline. This makes them even more useful, especially to those of you who snap up one of our new Chromebooks.

Finally, for those of you who prefer to surf the web in a different language, we’ve made the Chrome Web Store available in 41 languages. This is just a first step towards launching the store in 15 more countries with locally relevant applications. Some, like SKY for the UK and EXAME for Brazil, have already appeared in the store.

To play with all of these goodies and the more than 19,000 other items in the Chrome Web Store, you can start by downloading Google Chrome at

Posted by Rahul Roy-chowdhury, Product Manager

[G] A new kind of computer: Chromebook

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Google Chrome Blog: A new kind of computer: Chromebook

A little less than two years ago we set out to make computers much better. Today, we’re announcing the first Chromebooks from our partners, Samsung and Acer. These are not typical notebooks. With a Chromebook you won’t wait minutes for your computer to boot and browser to start. You’ll be reading your email in seconds. Thanks to automatic updates the software on your Chromebook will get faster over time. Your apps, games, photos, music, movies and documents will be accessible wherever you are and you won't need to worry about losing your computer or forgetting to back up files. Chromebooks will last a day of use on a single charge, so you don’t need to carry a power cord everywhere. And with optional 3G, just like your phone, you’ll have the web when you need it. Chromebooks have many layers of security built in so there is no anti-virus software to buy and maintain. Even more importantly, you won't spend hours fighting your computer to set it up and keep it up to date.

At the core of each Chromebook is the Chrome web browser. The web has millions of applications and billions of users. Trying a new application or sharing it with friends is as easy as clicking a link. A world of information can be searched instantly and developers can embed and mash-up applications to create new products and services. The web is on just about every computing device made, from phones to TVs, and has the broadest reach of any platform. With HTML5 and other open standards, web applications will soon be able to do anything traditional applications can do, and more.

Chromebooks will be available online June 15 in the US, UK, France, Germany, Netherlands, Italy and Spain. More countries will follow in the coming months. In the US, Chromebooks will be available from Amazon and Best Buy and internationally from leading retailers.

Even with dedicated IT departments, businesses and schools struggle with the same complex, costly and insecure computers as the rest of us. To address this, we’re also announcing Chromebooks for Business and Education. This service from Google includes Chromebooks and a cloud management console to remotely administer and manage users, devices, applications and policies. Also included is enterprise-level support, device warranties and replacements as well as regular hardware refreshes. Monthly subscriptions will start at $28/user for businesses and $20/user for schools.

There are over 160 million active users of Chrome today. Chromebooks bring you all of Chrome's speed, simplicity and security without the headaches of operating systems designed 20 to 30 years ago. We're very proud of what the Chrome team along with our partners have built, and with seamless updates, it will just keep getting better.

For more details please visit

Posted by Linus Upson, Vice President of Engineering and Sundar Pichai, Senior Vice President, Chrome

[G] Google Transit goes to Washington

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Google Public Policy Blog: Google Transit goes to Washington

Posted by Noam Ben Haim, Product Manager, Google Maps

(Cross-posted from the Official Google Blog.)

Every day, many thousands of commuters, locals, and tourists ride public transit in Washington, D.C. To help all of these transit riders find their way around the metro area, today we’re making comprehensive information about D.C.’s public transportation available on Google Transit.

In partnership with the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA), we’re adding all of D.C.’s Metro and bus stations, stops and routes, as well as connections to other transit systems in nearby cities. You can find this information on Google Maps as well as Google Maps for mobile—no matter where you are, you can get to where you’re going. With Google Transit, D.C. metro-area commuters—including those in Baltimore, Montgomery and Jefferson counties—may discover a quicker route to work, while visitors can easily make their way from Reagan National Airport straight to the Smithsonian.

Public transportation is a vital part of city infrastructure and can help alleviate congestion and reduce emissions. But planning your trip on public transit can be challenging, especially when there are multiple transit agencies and you need to use information from multiple sources to figure out the best route. With mapping tools like the transit feature, we’re working to make that easier.

Directions are also available on Google Maps for mobile—so if you’re graduating from GWU and want to meet some friends in Adams Morgan to celebrate, it’s as easy as pulling out your phone. If you’re using an Android device, for example, search for [Adams Morgan] in Google Maps, click on the Places result and select “Directions.” Switch to Transit in the upper-left corner and find out which bus gets you there fastest.

Wherever your journey takes you, whether using public transit, driving, biking or walking, we hope Google Transit directions in D.C. make finding your way a little easier.

[G] Keynote and session videos from Google I/O now live

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Official Google Blog: Keynote and session videos from Google I/O now live

With Google I/O 2011 just two days behind us, we wanted to thank the nearly 1 million developers who joined us at Moscone Center, attended I/O Extended events and watched online via I/O Live from 161 countries around the world.

The keynote presentations highlighted the momentum and vision for two of our most important developer platforms: Android and Chrome.

On the topic of Android, Hugo Barra, director of Android Product Management, opened Day 1 of the conference with the themes of “Momentum, Mobile and More,” announcing Movies in Android Market, Music Beta by Google, Android @ Home, Android Open Accessory and a preview of the new Ice Cream Sandwich logo. Read the blog post summary or watch the keynote in its entirety below.

The Day 2 keynote was all about Chrome, which has grown to 160 million active users, up from 70 million last year. Sundar Pichai, senior vice president of Chrome, discussed the launch of the HTML5 version of Angry Birds built with GWT on App Engine, Chromebooks for consumers and businesses and in-app payments. If you missed it, watch the Chrome keynote below.

These launches are just a few of the more than 30 announcements we made over the two days, including the launch of Google App Engine 1.5, a updated Google Prediction API, new additions to the Fusion Tables API and many more. For more information about these and the other news coming out of the event, visit the Google I/O label on the Google Code Blog.

Additionally, in case you missed any of these announcements, HD recordings of the sessions are now available online.

Find the highlights from this year’s event at, where we’ll feature photos, announcements and the latest videos. Also stay tuned for a feature on “Backstage at Google I/O” where we’ll highlight the developers and artists who helped to make the event possible this year.

Google I/O kicked off the year as our biggest developer event—but we’re only getting started. As of today, we’re announcing locations for our eight Google Developer Days (GDDs), which will take place all over the world with more than a few DevFests in between. Stay tuned for more info on the 2011 event details, but we’ll look forward to seeing you in Brazil, Argentina, Prague, Moscow, Tokyo, Sydney, Israel and Germany for our Google Developer team world tour.

Posted by Vic Gundotra, Senior Vice President of Engineering

[G] This week in search 5/13/11

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Official Google Blog: This week in search 5/13/11

This is part of a regular series of posts on search experience updates that runs on Fridays. Look for the label "This week in search" and subscribe to the series. - Ed.

This week, you can find what you’re looking for more easily, as we introduced Google Images with sorting and made Google Instant available for even more people.

Sort by subject in Google Images
When you’re searching for an image, sometimes it can be hard to describe in words what you’re looking for. Now when that happens, you can use Google Images with sorting to find that image more easily.

Let’s say you’re searching for a picture of [flowers]. It’s such a broad topic that instead of browsing through all the different results, you can click “Sort by subject” in the left-hand panel and your image results will be organized into related categories. The categories help narrow down your search and pinpoint what you need, whether it’s roses, lilies or tulips.

Instant on iPad and in Italy, Spain and Germany
This week, more people will experience the speed of Google Instant as it rolls out over the next few days to everyone in Italy, Spain and Germany, whether you are signed in or not. Additionally, if you’re an iPad owner and searching on, you can now see search predictions and results as you type.

Are you feeling lucky?
If you’re feeling lucky this Friday the 13th, see how fast you can try and solve today’s A Google a Day puzzle at

Posted by Mike Cassidy, Director of Product Management