Saturday, August 27, 2011

[G] Watch Anderson Cooper’s exclusive YouTube Q&A

| More

YouTube Blog: Watch Anderson Cooper’s exclusive YouTube Q&A

Earlier this week, we welcomed Anderson Cooper to our New York office for a lively question-and-answer session. As he prepares to launch his new daytime talk show on September 12, Anderson has made a big splash on YouTube, posting behind-the-scenes videos from his show, and answering viewer questions directly using our Moderator platform. In the one-hour session, the “Silver Fox” (as he’s affectionately known online) answered some of your top-voted questions submitted online.





He also talked about his “YouTube moment” last week on the Ridiculist (you have to see it to believe it), and told us what it’s like to be a (shy) celebrity in New York City. You can watch the full interview here:







Anderson’s visit was part of our @YouTube Talks series, which brings authors, musicians, innovators, and other thought leaders to YouTube for talks centered on their recent work. The goal is to capture the cultural zeitgeist of the day through interviews, presentations, and intimate studio sessions --- and give you access to these minds by opening up the sessions for viewer questions.



Stay tuned for more @YouTube Talks!



Steve Grove, Head of News and Politics, YouTube, recently watched "Anderson in Times Square."


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/Q9MJW4t5p-E/watch-anderson-coopers-exclusive.html

[G] YouTube Creator Playbook tips: the first 15 seconds

| More

YouTube Blog: YouTube Creator Playbook tips: the first 15 seconds

This is the first of a series of posts sharing tips from the YouTube Creator Playbook, a resource full of best practices and strategies that you can start using on your channel and videos right away.



Ever notice how many of your favorite shows start with a great two-minute scene followed by the opening credits, instead of the other way around? How often has a great movie trailer caught your attention and made you want to go see the movie right away on opening night? With so many entertainment choices, all types of creators know how important it is to capture the attention of audiences early on. This same idea applies to videos on YouTube, and here’s how you can use this creative technique to attract and keep your viewers watching.



Make compelling content first...

  • Start off with something that will immediately grab attention, whether it’s what you say or a stunning visual

  • Make it clear what your video is about early on, so viewers aren’t confused about what they’re watching

  • Tease the rest of the video so the audience is intrigued to see where you take them.

...share your channel branding later.

  • A flashy intro may look cool, but it’s not the star of the video - let them see you, or your great content, first

  • Make your branding compelling by making it entertaining or unique to each video

The general concept of capturing the audience’s attention upfront applies to all types of content in different ways. Find what’s right for your channel. Check out these great examples:



Toby, on CuteWinFail, addresses the audience, makes a joke, and sets up the show all on the first 15 sec.







Want to keep your branding upfront but still use this strategy? The voiceover for College Humor’s Jake and Amir packaging changes with every episode.



Need more ideas? For how-to content, such as cooking or fashion tutorials, the first few seconds of a video is a great place to present a “sneak peek” of what the finished product of the tutorial will be. This lets the viewer know what amazing thing they’ll be capable of making if they watch your video.



FoodWishes’ cooking channel does a great job of this:







You can learn more about how to structure the first 15 seconds of your videos, and lots of other tips and strategies in the YouTube Creator Playbook. These suggestions were pulled together from YouTubers like you, and we’re eager to see how you’ll apply these tips in your own creative ways.



Ryan Nugent, Audience Development Strategist, recently watched “James Blake - Limit to Your Love


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/hbqQ_bRb-Vc/youtube-creator-playbook-tips-first-15.html

[G] Another look under the hood of search

| More

Google Public Policy Blog: Another look under the hood of search

Posted by Amit Singhal, Google Fellow

(Cross-posted on the Inside Search blog)

Over the past few years, we’ve released a series of blog posts to share the methodology and process behind our search ranking, evaluation and algorithmic changes. Just last month, Ben Gomes, Matt Cutts and I participated in a Churchill Club event where we discussed how search works and where we believe it’s headed in the future.

Beyond our talk and various blog posts, we wanted to give people an even deeper look inside search, so we put together a short video that gives you a sense of the work that goes into the changes and improvements we make to Google almost every day. While an improvement to the algorithm may start with a creative idea, it always goes through a process of rigorous scientific testing. Simply put: if the data from our experiments doesn’t show that we’re helping users, we won’t launch the change.



In the world of search, we’re always striving to deliver the answers you’re looking for. After all, we know you have a choice of a search engine every time you open a browser. As the Internet becomes bigger, richer and more interactive it means that we have to work that much harder to ensure we’re unearthing and displaying the best results for you.


URL: http://googlepublicpolicy.blogspot.com/2011/08/another-look-under-hood-of-search.html

[G] Back to school with Chromebooks for Education

| More

Google Chrome Blog: Back to school with Chromebooks for Education

Summer may be winding down, but Chromebooks are heating up. Over on the Google Enterprise Blog today, we’re excited to share stories from the first three schools to hit the ground running with Chromebooks for Education. Chromebooks are fast, simple, and secure, and these benefits can be quite powerful in the classroom. Chromebooks increase time spent learning with a super-fast bootup, protect against viruses with built-in security features, and provide seamless access to all the great educational apps on the web. Plus, regular updates from Google mean that Chromebooks actually get better over time, saving thousands of dollars on maintenance and software upgrades.



We’re seeing tremendous interest from schools that we’re talking to about Chromebooks, and these first three schools all happen to be using Chromebooks in different ways. Grace Lutheran in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, is using Chromebooks in a shared classroom setting for fifth through eighth grades. The Fessenden School in West Newton, Massachusetts, will fill two traveling technology carts with Chromebooks, as well as allow students to check the devices out from the library. Merton Community School District in Merton, Wisconsin, will give one device to each student starting sixth grade this year, and the students will keep them through eighth grade.



Learn more about Chromebooks for Education on our website, or register to join our webinar on Tuesday, August 29 at 11:00 a.m. PDT.



Posted by Jaime Casap, Senior Education Evangelist, Chromebooks for Education
URL: http://chrome.blogspot.com/2011/08/back-to-school-with-chromebooks-for.html

[G] Faces of Gmail: Brandon Long

| More

The Google Apps Blog: Faces of Gmail: Brandon Long

Posted by Kathleen Chen, Consumer Operations

In this month’s Faces of Gmail we’ll introduce you to Brandon Long, a parent, ice-hockey player and science fiction fan who makes sure your emails get sent and received.

What do you do on the Gmail team?
I’m the Tech Lead Manager of the Gmail delivery team. Our team is responsible for sending and receiving email for Gmail and many other Google projects. We’re also responsible for the IMAP & POP support for Gmail, which is the most popular way to access Gmail on mobile devices.



What did you do before joining Google?
I founded Neotonic Software which wrote a web application for email customer support. Before that, I worked at eGroups, which was acquired by Yahoo! and is now Yahoo!Groups.

What’s your typical day like?
My typical day involves catching up on email from our teams in other timezones (Google Engineering never sleeps). I also stay on top of escalations from our support team, keep abreast of the running service with our SREs (Site Reliability Engineers), and make sure my team doesn’t have any blockages. Finally, I still manage to keep my hands in the codebase, working as part of the team. When I have some extra time, I take a peek in the Gmail help forum to see if there’s anything brewing or any help I can offer.

What do you like most about what you do?
Scale and ubiquity. Everyone knows about Gmail, many people I know use it. The volume of messages we deal with on a daily basis is pretty staggering, and it’s pretty complicated to keep the whole thing working and continuing to scale.

What are the three Gmail features you wouldn’t be able to live without?
SMTP, IMAP, and keyboard shortcuts. I get thousands of messages a day to my work account, and keyboard shortcuts make all of the difference in handling the volume.



What’s your favorite lab?
Green Robot. I’m an Android fan, and I like to see which of my friends are fans as well.

What do you do when you’re not working on Gmail?
I’m a father of two young children, and I play ice hockey in the local beer league.

Any favorite TV shows?
Burn Notice, The Daily Show, Top Chef, Top Gear

What’s on your reading list?
Switching to the Kindle for reading has allowed me to subscribe to magazines I gave up reading a long time ago. For example, after 15 years I’m back to reading Asimov’s Science Fiction magazine. I find it very convenient to read the short stories during my commute.

What would your last meal be?
Does one go with comfort food or with amazing? For comfort, nothing beats Chicago-style Pizza. In SF, that means Patxi’s. In Chicago, that means Lou Malnati’s or Gino’s East. For amazing, I’m not a foodie myself, but I have enough foodie friends to have been introduced to some meals both amazing and ridiculous. And besides, if it’s going to be my last meal, why not a 25 course gastronomic event taking six hours or more? The last place we tried was e by José Andrés, and it was fabulous.

Photos by Cody Bratt, Google Talk team
URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/GoogleAppsBlog/~3/5fq_5WC-OaA/faces-of-gmail-brandon-long.html

Friday, August 26, 2011

[G] This week's Trends: earthquakes, hurricanes, and portals

| More

YouTube Blog: This week's Trends: earthquakes, hurricanes, and portals

Each weekday, we at YouTube Trends take a look at the most interesting videos and cultural phenomena on YouTube as they develop. We want take a moment to highlight some of what we've come across this week:







Check back every day for the latest about what's trending on YouTube at: www.YouTube.com/Trends



Kevin Allocca, YouTube Trends Manager, recently watched "El Delorean de Volver al Futuro en Cabildo y Juramento."


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/FTtJRJrRBqA/this-weeks-trends-earthquakes.html

[G] Faces of Gmail: Brandon Long

| More

Official Gmail Blog: Faces of Gmail: Brandon Long

Posted by Kathleen Chen, Consumer Operations

In this month’s Faces of Gmail we’ll introduce you to Brandon Long, a parent, ice-hockey player and science fiction fan who makes sure your emails get sent and received.

What do you do on the Gmail team?
I’m the Tech Lead Manager of the Gmail delivery team. Our team is responsible for sending and receiving email for Gmail and many other Google projects. We’re also responsible for the IMAP & POP support for Gmail, which is the most popular way to access Gmail on mobile devices.



What did you do before joining Google?
I founded Neotonic Software which wrote a web application for email customer support. Before that, I worked at eGroups, which was acquired by Yahoo! and is now Yahoo!Groups.

What’s your typical day like?
My typical day involves catching up on email from our teams in other timezones (Google Engineering never sleeps). I also stay on top of escalations from our support team, keep abreast of the running service with our SREs (Site Reliability Engineers), and make sure my team doesn’t have any blockages. Finally, I still manage to keep my hands in the codebase, working as part of the team. When I have some extra time, I take a peek in the Gmail help forum to see if there’s anything brewing or any help I can offer.

What do you like most about what you do?
Scale and ubiquity. Everyone knows about Gmail, many people I know use it. The volume of messages we deal with on a daily basis is pretty staggering, and it’s pretty complicated to keep the whole thing working and continuing to scale.

What are the three Gmail features you wouldn’t be able to live without?
SMTP, IMAP, and keyboard shortcuts. I get thousands of messages a day to my work account, and keyboard shortcuts make all of the difference in handling the volume.



What’s your favorite lab?
Green Robot. I’m an Android fan, and I like to see which of my friends are fans as well.

What do you do when you’re not working on Gmail?
I’m a father of two young children, and I play ice hockey in the local beer league.

Any favorite TV shows?
Burn Notice, The Daily Show, Top Chef, Top Gear

What’s on your reading list?
Switching to the Kindle for reading has allowed me to subscribe to magazines I gave up reading a long time ago. For example, after 15 years I’m back to reading Asimov’s Science Fiction magazine. I find it very convenient to read the short stories during my commute.

What would your last meal be?
Does one go with comfort food or with amazing? For comfort, nothing beats Chicago-style Pizza. In SF, that means Patxi’s. In Chicago, that means Lou Malnati’s or Gino’s East. For amazing, I’m not a foodie myself, but I have enough foodie friends to have been introduced to some meals both amazing and ridiculous. And besides, if it’s going to be my last meal, why not a 25 course gastronomic event taking six hours or more? The last place we tried was e by José Andrés, and it was fabulous.

Photos by Cody Bratt, Google Talk team
URL: http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2011/08/faces-of-gmail-brandon-long.html

[G] Back to school with Chromebooks for Education

| More

Official Google Enterprise Blog: Back to school with Chromebooks for Education

Posted by Adam Naor, Chromebooks for Education Business Operations



As summer vacation ends and students prepare for the year ahead, we want to share stories from the first three schools to hit the ground running with Chromebooks for Education. Chromebooks decrease wait times in the classroom with a super-fast bootup, protect against viruses with enhanced security, and regular updates from Google mean that Chromebooks actually get better over time, saving thousands of dollars on maintenance and software upgrades. We asked these three schools to share their stories about how they plan to use Chromebooks this year to make the collaborative classroom a reality.



Chromebooks in the classroom

Contributed by Peter Iles, principal, 7th & 8th grade teacher, and tech lead, Grace Lutheran School, Oshkosh, Wis.



As a small private school in central Wisconsin, Grace Lutheran has not always had the funds to provide students with access to modern technology. Our computer lab was at least seven years old but our budgets were limited, so we had a severe need for low-cost, updated technology. To be honest, we were failing our students in being capable and current with technology and trends.



This summer, we considered three options: a complete PC refresh, Windows loaner laptops, or a set of Chromebooks. The first two choices would cost tens of thousands up front not including additional license fees and time I don’t have to maintain a Windows server environment. Chromebooks were the obvious economical choice, but they also made the most sense from an instructional perspective since we use Google Apps for Education, which is well integrated with Chromebooks. In my English class, students do peer reviews in real-time in Google Docs and with Google Maps and Earth we can do real-world math problems, which is far more tangible than working out of a text book.



In all, 17 Chromebooks will be shared in a classroom throughout the day among 5th through 8th grade students. I’m also actively using the Chromebook web-based management console, which allows me to whitelist certain extensions and pre-install education applications on each student's machine. The web changes the way students interact. And really, we have to change the way we teach. Chromebooks open up the whole world of knowledge - and that is one of the best gifts any teacher can give a student.





Chromebooks as a 1:1 device for sixth graders

Contributed by Tina Heizman, Director of Information Technology, Merton Community School District, Merton, Wis.



I really believe in the power of technology to enhance learning. When our 110 sixth graders return to school in September, they will each receive their own Chromebook to keep and use until they graduate from eighth grade. They will be able to take them home and use the 3G capabilities if needed. With the implementation of the Chromebooks and Google Apps for Education, our goal is to increase critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity among students.



When we learned that the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction was finalizing their statewide agreement for Google Apps for Education, Chromebooks seemed like a perfect addition. Giving students Chromebooks will keep them productive and allow my department to focus on helping students and staff, instead of dealing with hardware issues. Three years ago we gave each student in 5th through 8th grades a netbook, but login times have slowed significantly and hardware fails. Students become impatient and prefer to use their cell phones, which we’d like them to avoid for network security reasons. With the Chromebooks’ 8-second boot-up time and an 8-hour battery students can access the information they need, when they need it, and work a whole school day on a single charge.



I used to spend my summer imaging new computers, but using the web-based management console to deploy web apps across all 110 Chromebooks took me less than one hour. My vision is to have the devices be part of the natural classroom environment, available when needed, so learning can be the focus. Chromebooks and Google Apps for Education can do that for us.



Chromebooks on PC carts and in the library

Contributed by Ced Paine, Director of Technology, The Fessenden School, West Newton, Mass.



Fessenden is an independent K-9 school with hundreds of students. My five-member IT team has their hands full with six laptop carts, a computer-stocked library and two busy computer labs. When Chromebooks were announced, I thought “this is perfect, this is what we need.” Keeping desktop software up to date is a bear. Fessenden can now be considered cutting edge and technology-forward.



This year Fessenden will add two carts full of Chromebooks that teachers can reserve using Google Calendar for their lessons. As for the students, they are learning to create and collaborate in new, exciting ways. Chromebooks and the web are what I consider the holy grail of educational tools. Kids don’t think of it as using technology; Google Docs is just a blank screen to start creating. Add in the ability to chat with a peer or their teacher while doing their homework presentation in a different town and the results are just amazing to watch unfold.



In addition to the Chromebook carts, students can borrow a Chromebook from the school library. Eventually, we would like all students in 5th through 9th grades to have their own Chromebook. I’m blown away by the creative ways students and teachers use web technology. There’s one project where throughout the year each group rewrites one chapter of a book using Google Docs. At the end, the entire class has re-written the book in their own words. The web allows the students to be the teachers.



How could you use Chromebooks in your school? Learn more about Chromebooks for Education on our website, or register to join our webinar on Tuesday, August 29 at 11:00 a.m. PDT.
URL: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.com/2011/08/back-to-school-with-chromebooks-for.html

[G] YouTube Presents: Taylor Swift takes your questions

| More

Official Google Blog: YouTube Presents: Taylor Swift takes your questions

With her vocal talent and songwriting skills, Taylor Swift has won four Grammys, six CMT Music Awards, 13 Teen Choice Awards, the Academy of Country Music’s Entertainer of the Year award—and a tremendous following of loyal fans. Now, she’s taking questions from you on YouTube.



Starting today and until 12 p.m. PT on August 31, you can submit written or video queries on Taylor Swift’s channel, and vote on your favorites. She’ll answer the most popular ones as part of our YouTube Presents program.

Visit the YouTube blog for more info, and keep an eye on the YouTube homepage to see Taylor’s Q&A as soon as it’s uploaded.

Posted by Anna Richardson, Communications Manager
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/08/youtube-presents-taylor-swift-takes.html

[G] Today is a Fairytale: Taylor Swift takes your questions on YouTube

| More

YouTube Blog: Today is a Fairytale: Taylor Swift takes your questions on YouTube

From "Tim McGraw" to "Sparks Fly," Taylor Swift has won over fans worldwide with her vocal talent and songwriting skills. In addition to a tremendous fan following, Swift has racked up four Grammys, six CMT Music Awards, thirteen Teen Choice Awards and even the Academy of Country Music’s Entertainer of the Year award, joning the likes of Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton and The Dixie Chicks. And now she takes your questions on YouTube!



Ever wonder what it’s like to become a major pop star before you’re out of high school -- on the strength of your own songs? Whether you’re cheer captain or on the bleachers, Taylor wants to hear from you and she’s agreed to be fearless in answering!







Starting today, submit written or video queries on Taylor Swift’s channel, and she’ll answer the most popular ones as part of our YouTube Presents program. You have until noon on August 31 to submit your questions and vote on the ones you’d most like to see her answer.



YouTube Presents is an ongoing program dedicated to bringing you live performances and interviews with your favorite artists. Upcoming YouTube Presents events will include artist interviews (with questions provided by the YouTube community), intimate performances at the YouTube offices, and live streams of music festivals.



Stay tuned for more YouTube Presents sessions this fall -- and watch the homepage to see Taylor’s Q&A, which we’ll post as soon as it’s uploaded.



Anna Richardson, Communications Manager, recently watched “Our Song.”


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/RR2yLQRUCL4/today-is-fairytale-taylor-swift-takes.html

[G] Another look under the hood of search

| More

Official Google Blog: Another look under the hood of search

(Cross-posted on the Inside Search blog and the Public Policy blog)

Over the past few years, we’ve released a series of blog posts to share the methodology and process behind our search ranking, evaluation and algorithmic changes. Just last month, Ben Gomes, Matt Cutts and I participated in a Churchill Club event where we discussed how search works and where we believe it’s headed in the future.

Beyond our talk and various blog posts, we wanted to give people an even deeper look inside search, so we put together a short video that gives you a sense of the work that goes into the changes and improvements we make to Google almost every day. While an improvement to the algorithm may start with a creative idea, it always goes through a process of rigorous scientific testing. Simply put: if the data from our experiments doesn’t show that we’re helping users, we won’t launch the change.



In the world of search, we’re always striving to deliver the answers you’re looking for. After all, we know you have a choice of a search engine every time you open a browser. As the Internet becomes bigger, richer and more interactive it means that we have to work that much harder to ensure we’re unearthing and displaying the best results for you.

Posted by Amit Singhal, Google Fellow
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/08/another-look-under-hood-of-search.html

[G] Food for (green) thought

| More

Official Google Blog: Food for (green) thought

This is the second in a short series of posts and videos spotlighting our efforts to make Google greener. In this post, we give you a glimpse at our sustainable food programs. -Ed.

When it comes to eating sustainably, it’s about more than being organic, grass-fed or cage-free. Through our food program, we delight and support Googlers as well as uphold our company’s health and environmental values. And it’s a job we relish, because food is such a defining part of our unique culture. Our cafes and microkitchens help spark greater innovation and collaboration, allowing different teams to come together to share ideas, problem-solve or just get to know each other better over lunch or a mid-morning snack.

As part of Google’s Food Team, we serve roughly 50,000 healthy and delicious meals every day at nearly 100 cafes around the world—and strive to apply sustainable food principles to all the cafes we operate. We aim to source food that’s as local, seasonal and organic as possible. This helps us prevent artificial additives, pesticides and hormones from entering Google’s food supply—whether that means sourcing our eggs from cage-free chickens or using steroid- and antibiotic-free poultry. It’s fresher, and it tastes better!



Through Google’s Green Seafood Policy, we’ve established guidelines to help ensure that (whenever and wherever possible) we purchase species caught locally from independently managed fisheries that use environmentally responsible catch practices. At our Mountain View headquarters, where we benefit from our proximity to the ocean and local agriculture, we’ve been able to establish close relationships with several local, independent farmers and fishermen. We see firsthand how they raise and harvest their stock, and what sustainable catch methods they use. Much of our Mountain View produce (nearly half of which is organic) comes from farms in California, and our seafood comes from within 200 miles. Many of our campuses also have edible gardens that empower green-thumbed Googlers to grow herbs for their own cooking.

Because optimal eating habits extend beyond the walls of our offices, we’re committed to helping Googlers make the most informed choices possible as part of a healthy lifestyle. We want to not only become the healthiest workforce, but also make it easier for employees to take Google’s sustainable food values home to share with friends and family. Many of our offices in the U.S. offer Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs where Googlers can buy fresh, seasonal produce directly from local farms that’s delivered right to campus. In Mountain View, we also recently launched the Google Green Grocer program, where Googlers can order the same high-quality, sustainably sourced seafood, meat and eggs they already enjoy in our cafes, while supporting local community fisheries and farms.

We also pay very close attention to how we manage and reduce waste from our food program. Most employees use non-disposable dishware, and all of our grab-and-go containers are compostable. We have recycling and composting bins throughout many of our offices worldwide, and 20 percent of food waste from our cafes is recycled. In fact, organic food waste from our cafes in Europe, the Middle East and Africa is recycled to help produce bio-diesel or electricity. In some of our U.S. offices, any untouched, edible food is donated to local shelters, and the rest is put to use as compost.

Through our our cafes, microkitchens, edible gardens and community-supported food programs, we’re connecting Googlers to sustainable values on a daily basis. The more we care about what happens to the food on our plates and where it comes from, the more it can improve our health, our local economies and the environment.

Posted by Scott Giambastiani, Executive Chef
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/08/food-for-green-thought.html

Thursday, August 25, 2011

[G] Peering into Jorge Luis Borges’s Labyrinth

| More

Inside Google Books: Peering into Jorge Luis Borges’s Labyrinth

Posted by Matt Werner, Technical Writer, Enterprise

In honor of Jorge Luis Borges's 112th birthday, Google has prepared a special doodle for today. Borges (1899-1986) was an Argentinian author best known today for his fantastic short stories and influential essays and poetry. His ideas have made a lasting impact on fields as far-ranging as mathematics, philosophy, literary theory, translation studies, and studies in cyberculture/futurology.


Google Doodle by Sophia Foster-Dimino

The New York Times piece "Borges and the Foreseeable Future" highlights Borges's surprising influence on the Internet era. Focusing on Borges's story "Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius," the article shows how Borges's idea of an infinite encyclopedia can be interpreted as a prototype for Wikipedia.

In a similar light, Borges's story "On Exactitude in Science," which is about a map as large as the area it depicts, has a virtual corollary with Google Earth and Google Maps. In "El Aleph", Borges wrote about a single point in space through which all other points in space and time could be seen. The Google search box hasn’t quite reached this breadth, but we are adding to the index everyday.

In The Library of Babel, Borges describes an infinite library that holds every conceivable book, composed of every conceivable combination of letters. This story has left scholars pondering the consequences of this infinite library, and recent titles, like William Bloch’s The Unimaginable Mathematics of Borges' Library of Babel, have set about analyzing the mathematics in Borges’s story.




Visualizing Borges’s literary legacy

The Google Books Ngram Viewer is a tool in Google Books which allows you to search for terms and phrases. Using the tool, you can compare trends in word usage in the millions of books in the Google Books digital corpus. Below are Ngrams showing the trends in the number of books that have "Jorge Luis Borges" in Spanish and English. The graphs go from 1899 (when he was born) to 2000. These graphs show Borges's explosive rise in popularity for Spanish and English-reading audiences.

References to Jorge Luis Borges's name in Spanish-language books in Google Books 1899-2000

Books Ngram Viewer graph for Borges references in Spanish

References to Jorge Luis Borges's name in English-language books in Google Books 1899-2000

Books Ngram Viewer graph for Borges references in English

What's interesting about these graphs is how there are Spanish-language books referencing Borges as early as the mid-1920s. However, for English books, Borges's popularity didn't take off until he shared the Formentor Prize, an international literary award, with Samuel Beckett in 1961.

At that point, Borges's popularity in the English-speaking world took off. English translations of his works became more widely available thanks to the efforts of Norman Thomas di Giovanni and other translators, and Borges traveled the world in the later years of his life with Maria Kodama, giving lectures on literature. The number of times Borges's name appears in English books rises sharply in the decade from 1961 to 1971 and continues its upward trend through 2000.

Interestingly, for Spanish books, the frequency of his name dropped soon after his passing in 1986, only to surge from 1990 to 2000. It will be interesting to see in the future, if references to Borges keep rising.

"Of a language of the dawn"

How would Borges, a lover of language known for his exquisite word choice, have used Ngram Viewer? This tool is a step beyond the card catalogue and library indexes he used as a librarian, but is a data visualization tool that allows one to simultaneously peer at and dissect individual words and phrases used in millions of books.

Would Borges have used Ngram Viewer to track trends and the emergence of words in the many languages he knew? Could he have used it to write about the death of one word or language, to be supplanted by another, similar to how he describes the birth of English from Anglo-Saxon in his poem "On Beginning the Study of Anglo-Saxon Grammar"? Or would he have have used the tool in ways we have not yet imagined?

Want to learn more about Borges and his writing?

Visit Google Books to access ebooks by and about Borges:
URL: http://booksearch.blogspot.com/2011/08/peering-into-jorge-luis-borgess.html

[G] Our software application guidelines explained

| More

Google Affiliate Network: Our software application guidelines explained

Two years ago today, we announced new Google Affiliate Network software application guidelines to better protect the interests of our users, advertisers, and publishers. These policies are rooted in the belief that applications should enhance the user experience and never interfere with the user’s choice or purchase path.

Google Affiliate Network’s publishers have shown great innovation, building useful applications, toolbars, and browser extensions that benefit their users and drive quality conversions for advertisers. All approved applications go through a software review, where our Network Quality team thoroughly tests all submissions and each of their updates.

Our guidelines help ensure that applications don’t subject users to malicious or manipulative behavior, or create unwarranted commissions for advertisers. They also help prevent software from automatically co-opting commissions from other publishers. Most notably, these policies require users to agree before redirecting them through Google Affiliate Network links.

In the two years since we released our updated guidelines, our Network Quality team has reviewed and approved dozens of new software applications and updates. We want to thank our publishers for applying these guidelines to their applications, and look forward to the continued growth of the entire affiliate ecosystem.

Posted by Matt Dougherty, Network Quality
URL: http://googleaffiliatenetwork-blog.blogspot.com/2011/08/our-software-application-guidelines.html

[G] The Google Docs app for Android now with Web Clipboard and in 46 languages

| More

Official Google Mobile Blog: The Google Docs app for Android now with Web Clipboard and in 46 languages

In April, we introduced the Google Docs app for Android, a useful way to view, edit and create documents and spreadsheets on the go. Today, we're extending the availability of this app to 45 additional languages and adding a new Web Clipboard feature that makes it easy to insert photos from your Android phone into a Google document. Learn more on the Google Docs blog and update or download the app today from Android Market.





Posted by Tobias Thierer, Software Engineer
URL: http://googlemobile.blogspot.com/2011/08/google-docs-app-for-android-now-with.html

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

[G] Doing more with the +1 button, more than 4 billion times a day

| More

Official Google Blog: Doing more with the +1 button, more than 4 billion times a day


In June we launched the +1 button for websites, making it easier to recommend content across the web. In July, the +1 button crossed 2 billion daily views, and we also made it a lot faster. Today the +1 button appears on more than a million sites, with over 4 billion daily views, and we're extremely excited about this momentum.

It's just the beginning, however, and today we're launching two more features that make +1 buttons more useful for users and publishers alike.

Sharing with your circles on Google+
Clicking the +1 button is a great way to highlight content for others when they search on Google. But sometimes you want to start a conversation right away—at least with certain groups of friends. So beginning today, we're making it easy for Google+ users to share webpages with their circles, directly from the +1 button. Just +1 a page as usual and look for the new "Share on Google+" option. From there you can comment, choose a circle and share.


The new +1 button on Rotten Tomatoes

+Snippets
When you share content from the +1 button, you’ll notice that we automatically include a link, an image and a description in the sharebox. We call these "+snippets," and they're a great way to jumpstart conversations with the people you care about.

Of course: publishers can benefit from +snippets as well. With just a few changes to their webpages, publishers can actually customize their +snippets and encourage more sharing of their content on Google+. More details are available on the Google Webmaster blog.



We're rolling out sharing and +snippets globally over the next week, but if you’d like to try the new +1 button now, you can join our Google+ Platform Preview. Once you're part of the Preview, just visit a site with the +1 button (like Rotten Tomatoes) and +1 the page. Thanks for all of your feedback so far, and stay tuned for more features in the weeks and months ahead!

Posted by Vic Gundotra, Senior Vice President of Engineering
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/08/doing-more-with-1-button-more-than-4.html

[G] Panoramio Groups: Join a photo community to match your interests

| More

Official Google Blog: Panoramio Groups: Join a photo community to match your interests

(Cross-posted from the Lat Long Blog)

I'm from Barcelona, and once a year I go to Costa Brava on the Mediterranean with my friends to enjoy good food and nice weather. I always carry my camera with me to capture the beach when the light is just right, take photos of my favorite meals or document my latest hike. When I get home, I upload my photos to Panoramio and position them on the map. Pictures uploaded to Panoramio can be featured in the “Photos” layer of Google Earth and Google Maps, which means that I can share my travel experiences with others and, in return, explore places around the world through the eyes of other photographers.

Starting today, you can share your passions through photographs more collaboratively with Panoramio Groups. This new feature lets you create a sub-community within Panoramio around a topic you’re passionate about, so you can easily engage with like-minded photographers and hobbyists.

Panoramio is an online community of people that share and explore photos of the world.

For example, in my trips around the world, I always take the time to enjoy the local cuisine, like Costa Brava’s arròs negre. So I created a group called “Food,” to give others a "taste" of that region and get a glimpse of what fellow foodies are feasting on. My fellow group members—and by all means I hope you’ll become one of them!—can add their own photos, browse others' and get culinary and travel inspiration.

Panoramio Groups allow members to share photos and start discussions on a given topic.

To share your own interests and passions through photos, hop over to Panoramio and create your own group or join an existing one from the Groups Directory. You can show off your photos of your favorite restaurant, the most beautiful sunset you’ve seen, the latest lighthouse you’ve visited, or the cutest dog from each continent. Whatever it is, try starting a discussion about your favorite topics and share what matters to you with others.

Visit www.panoramio.com/groups to get started. We hope you enjoy this new addition to Panoramio—let us know what you think in the Panoramio Forum!

Posted by Gerard Sanz, Panoramio Community Manager
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/08/panoramio-groups-join-photo-community.html

[G] Doing more with the +1 button, more than 4 billion times a day

| More

DoubleClick Publisher Blog: Doing more with the +1 button, more than 4 billion times a day

(Originally posted on the Official Google blog)


In June we launched the +1 button for websites, making it easier to recommend content across the web. In July, the +1 button crossed 2 billion daily views, and we also made it a lot faster. Today the +1 button appears on more than a million sites, with over 4 billion daily views, and we're extremely excited about this momentum.


It's just the beginning, however, and today we're launching two more features that make +1 buttons more useful for users and publishers alike.



Sharing with your circles on Google+

Clicking the +1 button is a great way to highlight content for others when they search on Google. But sometimes you want to start a conversation right away—at least with certain groups of friends. So beginning today, we're making it easy for Google+ users to share webpages with their circles, directly from the +1 button. Just +1 a page as usual and look for the new "Share on Google+" option. From there you can comment, choose a circle and share.





The new +1 button on Rotten Tomatoes


+Snippets

When you share content from the +1 button, you’ll notice that we automatically include a link, an image and a description in the sharebox. We call these "+snippets," and they're a great way to jumpstart conversations with the people you care about.



Of course: publishers can benefit from +snippets as well. With just a few changes to their webpages, publishers can actually customize their +snippets and encourage more sharing of their content on Google+. More details are available on the Google Webmaster blog.







We're rolling out sharing and +snippets globally over the next week, but if you’d like to try the new +1 button now, you can join our Google+ Platform Preview. Once you're part of the Preview, just visit a site with the +1 button (like Rotten Tomatoes) and +1 the page. Thanks for all of your feedback so far, and stay tuned for more features in the weeks and months ahead!



Posted by Vic Gundotra, Senior Vice President of Engineering
URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/DoubleclickPublisherBlog/~3/Be7TjSwfPM0/doing-more-with-1-button-more-than-4.html

[G] Introducing Multi-Channel Funnels: discover untapped opportunities in your conversion path

| More

Google Analytics Blog: Introducing Multi-Channel Funnels: discover untapped opportunities in your conversion path

An ad is clicked, and a purchase is made. Marketers have long used Google Analytics and similar tools to see which marketing efforts drive sales and conversions. Measurement is fundamental to ROI-focused marketing. Now, we’re taking this measurability a few steps further.


When a customer buys or converts on your site, most conversion tracking tools credit the most recent link or ad clicked. In reality though, customers research, compare and make purchase decisions via multiple touch points across multiple channels. So marketers that measure return solely on the last channel that a customer touches before conversion are getting an incomplete picture, and potentially missing out on important opportunities to reach their customers.


That’s why we’re excited today to introduce Multi-Channel Funnels to all Google Analytics users. This set of five new reports in Google Analytics gives marketers insight into the full path to conversion over a 30 day period, not simply the last click.




By looking at interactions across most digital media channels, including clicks from paid and organic searches, affiliates, social networks, and display ads, you can understand how different channels work together to create sales and conversions.




We’ve been piloting Multi-Channel Funnels with several customers over the past few months, and we’ve seen our customers gain valuable insight into the buying-cycle and understand the often hidden contribution of channels like social and display to conversions.


One of our early partners in the pilot, HUGO BOSS, uncovered significant contributions from upper funnel efforts, helping to better inform marketing strategy. "Knowing more about how our customers find us is very important, and this data helps us make better decisions. We found out that nearly two out of every three conversions involves more than one touch point,” said Patrick Berresheim, Director E-Commerce/CRM for HUGO BOSS. “It's now possible to value the contributions of assisting channels, which had previously been hidden by looking only at the last click.”


If you use Google Analytics on your website, and have goals or e-commerce tracking enabled, you can begin using the reports today by clicking on the My Conversions tab, with no further setup required. If you are an AdWords customer, make sure to link your AdWords and Analytics accounts to get the most detail on your ads performance. Starting today, you’ll see complete data in the reports for the past two months, and we’ll be expanding to encompass data back through January 2011 in the coming days.


To help you learn more about the type of analysis you can do using Multi-Channel Funnels, including advanced features such as conversion segments and custom channel groupings, we’ll be scheduling a free webinar - look out for the registration details on the blog in a couple of weeks or sign up here to be notified by email. We’ll be walking through the reports and common use cases and you’ll have an opportunity to ask questions - we hope you’ll be able to make it.


Posted by Bill Kee, Product Manager for Google Analytics


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/tRaA/~3/4bpvoy3S7k0/introducing-multi-channel-funnels.html