Saturday, December 3, 2011

[G] Take a walk on the sell-side

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DoubleClick Publisher Blog: Take a walk on the sell-side

(Originally posted on the Official Google blog)

In June, we announced that we are acquiring Admeld, a New York-based company that helps large publishers (also known as the “sell-side” by people, like me, who live and breathe display advertising) maximize their revenues from online advertising. We’re pleased that the U.S. Department of Justice has today cleared this deal. We’ll close the acquisition in the coming days and then start the real work—building improved products and services that help our publisher partners to make more informed decisions across all their ad space, and to grow their revenues.

The opportunity for major online publishers is huge...and growing. People are spending more and more time consuming online content across numerous devices, advertisers are running more online and mobile campaigns to reach them; and ads continue to get more engaging and relevant. This represents an unprecedented moment for publishers. We believe that improved technology and services can help publishers seize it and make online advertising work much better.

For now, it’s business as usual—Admeld’s products will operate separately to Google’s existing solutions (such as DFP and the DoubleClick Ad Exchange). But over time, there are opportunities to bring the best of both businesses together in a variety of ways; and to develop entirely new solutions, too.

As we do this, Admeld and Google are guided by some core shared beliefs:
  • We want to give publishers more control over their ad space, and offer more flexible ways to manage and sell it. Publishers’ businesses should influence the technology they use; not the other way around
  • We believe that publishers can make better decisions to maximize their revenues when they have better insights at their fingertips
  • We envisage a much simpler system that enables publishers to manage and sell their ad space—across desktop, video, mobile, tablets and more
The content produced by Google’s and Admeld’s publisher partners is the lifeblood of the Internet. We can’t wait to start building the next generation of tools and services that will help them grow their businesses.

Posted by Neal Mohan, Vice President of Display Advertising
URL: http://doubleclickpublishers.blogspot.com/2011/12/take-walk-on-sell-side.html

[G] HP drives business savings in contact center with the Google Search Appliance

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Official Google Enterprise Blog: HP drives business savings in contact center with the Google Search Appliance

Posted by Ray Coyle, HP Global Workplace Services Manager

Editors note: Today’s guest blogger is Ray Coyle, Global Workplace Services Manager at HP Enterprise Services. HP Enterprise Services provides outsourced contact center operations to clients globally.

HP Enterprise Services is a worldwide organization providing outsourced technology and business solutions to more than 1,700 business and government clients in 90 countries. One of our core businesses is contact center outsourcing, a service provided in more than 40 countries and 22 languages.

We’ve been providing contact center outsourcing for a global Fortune 500 automobile manufacturer for several years. For this automaker’s call center, which we run on their behalf, our support specialists used a system that applied aging cataloging and indexing software to comb through a knowledge base of hundreds of thousands of HTML and Microsoft Office documents.

While the workflow was well specified and clear, search was the number one complaint among agents, who had to log into a series of screens. Our average call handling time in the call centers we run for customers is around 12 minutes. In our experience, we’ve found that shaving even a minute or two off that time produces 10–15% cost reductions that contribute to better profitability and savings for our customers.

For the automaker’s call center, we considered the time-consuming task of creating our own search tool using open source solutions, but instead chose the Google Search Appliance (GSA). So far, agents are reacting favorably to the simple interface, and this is leading to higher search usage.

Many features in the Google Search Appliance help agents find accurate information faster. KeyMatches, for example, allow us to promote the most-used web pages. Content collections let us group results by categories of client requests—a major help in finding a specific piece of information in a complex maze of documents and websites. Case-sensitive recognition helps agents hone in on the right information faster. By using crawl diagnostics, we can continue to refine the search results delivered to agents. This all leads to an increase in first-call resolution—the number one challenge call centers face.

By finding the exact information they are looking for in a matter of seconds, agents can quickly respond to customer needs. They do not have to scroll through pages of information and click on dozens of links. While we don’t have all the statistics yet, we believe the Google Search Appliance will lead to call-handling reductions of up to 15 percent and lower agent training costs. The GSA is a win-win for HP, our call center customers – and ultimately the end users who contact our customers’ call centers.
URL: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.com/2011/11/hp-produces-1015-business-savings-in.html

[G] People Transform Government with Google Apps

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Official Google Enterprise Blog: People Transform Government with Google Apps

Posted by Scott McIntyre, Director of State and Local Government, Google Enterprise

Around the world, public servants are advancing the way government operates: building more transparent systems, bringing down costs and improving services. They’re doing this with ideas, technology, and passion for their work. When they see problems, they find solutions. They work together to build, fix, create. They imagine how things could be different. They transform their agency, their community, their country.

With Google Apps for Government, we’re pleased to provide some of the tools that help these “Government Transformers.” We are happy to recognize three of these transformers today:

Joe Fiumara, Lake Havasu Police Department, Arizona
Joe realized that officers are out on patrol 24x7 while supervisors and commanders work more regular business hours, making two-way communication a challenge. Joe used Google Sites to build a virtual “Watercooler” that lets officers ask questions, share information and generate ideas. Patrol officers now communicate directly with command, which fosters transparency and openness, even when they’re out on patrol.

Jason Kirkland, City of Lewisville, Texas
Playing golf or pool with Jason can be annoying since after every shot he tries to figure out a better strategy. When Jason realized city employees didn’t have easy access to the mounds of geospatial data the city of Lewisville had, he started thinking about ways to put it all to better use. The result: a layered map of Lewisville that uses Google Spreadsheets and Google Maps to let anyone find local schools, trash pick up days and other useful city information.

Jillian Ballow, State of Wyoming
Upon joining the Governor’s office, Jillian realized that the Governor’s staff lacked easy access to the most current data on a number of important policy issues. She used Google Apps to create a single site to track legislative issues, committee meeting schedules, policy staff participation, and the status of policies. Having all this data in one place makes it easy to keep the Governor and his staff informed and up to date.

Google Apps for Government is a full suite of email and collaboration applications designed for teams and built for the web. We’re proud that our tools are helping people like Joe, Jason and Jillian make a difference in their offices and their communities. We’re looking for more of these Government Transformers in the hopes that examples of their creativity can help other public servants who face similar challenges, in the U.S. and around the world.

So if you’re one of them (or know one of them), we invite you to share your story. What kind of problem did you fix? How did you come up with the idea? And exactly how did you make it happen? Submit your story in 300 words or a short video to www.govtransformers.com by January 16, 2012. We’ll feature the best stories on www.govtransformers.com and invite the very best to present at “Innovation for the Nation” 2012 in Washington, DC.

We can’t wait to see what you and your colleagues are doing for the world!
URL: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.com/2011/12/people-transform-government-with-google.html

[G] Google AdSense & Blogger: An introduction

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Blogger Buzz: Google AdSense & Blogger: An introduction

Hi, my name is Andy Chung. I work on the Google AdSense team helping online publishers, specifically Blogger users like you, ensure your blogs are optimized to generate as much income for you as possible.

A few weeks ago we met with many of you at the 2011 BlogWorld & New Media Expo. One of the consistent themes we heard was: "please provide me with more tips on how to make money with my blog.”

At your request, we’re happy to bring you a series of posts with some helpful tips on how to configure AdSense to give you the highest possible return from your blog.

If you've been thinking about monetizing your blog and are unfamiliar with how Google AdSense works, here are the three things you need to know:

1. AdSense is built into Blogger:
You can easily sign up and start showing ads on your blog, without having to leave Blogger, by clicking on the "Earnings" tab in your dashboard. After completing the AdSense application, the next step is to designate where you want the ads to appear on your blog. Once your application is approved, we’ll start serving ads and you’ll start making money. And unlike many other blogging platforms, Blogger doesn’t take a cut of your revenue.



2. AdSense serves relevant ads on your blogs:
AdSense works by matching text and image ads to your blog based on your content and the types of users that visit your site. For example, if you write about running, your readers may see ads next to your post about running shoes and equipment. Ads are created and paid for by advertisers who want to promote their products.

3. Great content is key:
Posting high quality content is the best way to maximize your returns with AdSense. It’s important to take a little extra time defining your topic, creating a post that is engaging and matters to your readers. The more interesting and appealing your content is, the more likely your readers will be to click on the ads on your blog.

This short video will also give you a quick overview of AdSense and how it works with Blogger:


Stay tuned to the Blogger Buzz blog for more tips and tricks about monetization in the coming weeks.

Posted by Andy Chung, AdSense
URL: http://buzz.blogger.com/2011/12/google-adsense-blogger-introduction.html

[G] 2011 Google China Faculty Summit in Hangzhou

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Google Research Blog: 2011 Google China Faculty Summit in Hangzhou

Posted by Aimin Zhu, University Relationship Manager, Google China



We just wrapped up a highly successful 2011 Google China Faculty Summit in Hangzhou, China. On November 17 and 18, Googlers from China and the U.S. gathered with more than 80 faculty members representing more than 45 universities and institutes, including Tsinghua University, Peking University and The Chinese Academy of Sciences. The two-day event revolved around the theme of “Communication, Exploration and Expansion,” with day one covering research and day two focusing on academic development.



The summit provided a unique setting for both sides to share the results of their research and exchange ideas. Speakers included:



  • Maggie Johnson, director of education and university relations at Google, presenting on innovation in Google research and global university relations programs,

  • Dr. Boon-Lock Yeo, head of engineering and research for Google China, providing an overview of innovation in China engineering and corporate social responsibility efforts and accomplishments, and

  • Prof. Edward Chang, director of research for Google China, delivering a keynote on mobile information management and retrieval.



The discussions on November 17 focused on two tracks, mobile computing and natural language processing, while discussions on November 18 focused on curriculum development with a special focus on Android app development. The attendees also spent time discussing joint research and development between universities and industry.



This summit is part of a continuing to effort to collaborate with Chinese universities in order to support education in China. Click here for a list of the variety of education programs we have launched there in recent years. We look forward to expanding partnership opportunities in the future.


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/gJZg/~3/Yz1fuPessVA/2011-google-china-faculty-summit-in.html

Friday, December 2, 2011

[G] Expanding Safe Browsing Alerts to include malware distribution domains

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Google Online Security Blog: Expanding Safe Browsing Alerts to include malware distribution domains

Posted by Nav Jagpal, Security Team

For the past year, we’ve been sending notifications to network administrators registered through the Safe Browsing Alerts for Network Administrators service when our automated tools find phishing URLs or compromised sites that lead to malware on their networks. These notifications provide administrators with important information to help them improve the security of their networks.

Today we’re adding distribution domains to the set of information we share. These are domains that are responsible for launching exploits and serving malware. Unlike compromised sites, which are often run by innocent webmasters, distribution domains are set up with the primary purpose of serving malicious content.

If you’re a network administrator and haven’t yet registered your AS, you can do so here.
URL: http://googleonlinesecurity.blogspot.com/2011/12/expanding-safe-browsing-alerts-to.html

[G] Here comes Santa Claus

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Google LatLong: Here comes Santa Claus


Whether you know him as Père Noël, Weihnachtsmann, Babbo Natale, Father Christmas, Saint Nicholas or Santa Claus, there’s a chance you’re anticipating a visit from the jolly old man this December 24. Although he goes by many different names, the magic he brings to the holidays is felt by children and adults celebrating Christmas all over the world.

Growing up in Lawrence, Kansas, I have fond memories of racing to the tree Christmas morning to see what Santa left during his stop in my town. Sometimes it took a lot of work to stay on the right side of the “naughty or nice” list, but Santa came through for me every year.

Like most traditions, this one has evolved over time. Now, in addition to racing downstairs to their stockings, children can follow Santa online on his annual trip from the North Pole to their chimney. With NORAD Tracks Santa, children and families can watch Santa as he delivers presents all over the globe (with a little help from the North American Aerospace Defense Command). If you haven't yet followed this tradition in your family, we'd like to invite you to join us this Christmas Eve.

The countdown to track Santa begins today. Visit www.noradsanta.org the entire month of December to play holiday games and learn fun facts about NORAD and Santa. Set a reminder for 2 a.m. EST on December 24 to start tracking Santa in real-time on the website using Google Maps, and in 3D with Google Earth. If your phone is handy on Christmas Eve, you can also search for [santa] on Google Maps for mobile to track his journey on the go.

Wherever you are, we look forward to counting down to the holidays with you at www.noradsanta.org. Be sure to finish all your holiday shopping in time so you can join us for the main event on December 24.

In the meantime, to get into the Santa tracking spirit, follow NORAD Tracks Santa on Google+ and enjoy a few highlights from last year’s journey in this video:



Posted by Brian McClendon, VP of Engineering, Google Earth and Maps
URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2011/12/here-comes-santa-claus.html

[G] This week's Trends: mustaches, coasters, and shoppers

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YouTube Blog: This week's Trends: mustaches, coasters, and shoppers

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:

  • We saw how one young man's speech went viral TWICE in 2011.



  • We waived goodbye to everyone's Movember facial hair.



  • We got a first person view of some really wild roller coasters.



  • We collected the craziest videos from the Black Friday shopping chaos.



  • And one of our Most Shared videos was this train station flash mob captured in Mumbai:






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 "Miracle on 42nd Street."


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/BFoQo0wwcsE/this-weeks-trends-mustaches-coasters.html

[G] Think With Google’s December Adventure: Search Tips Recap

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Inside AdWords: Think With Google’s December Adventure: Search Tips Recap

As we announced earlier this week, we'll be sharing insights and daily tips this month on Think with Google's Plus Page, to help you make the most of your holiday marketing.

Here are the four search ad related insights we covered this week (and a fun factoid):
Click on the titles to view the original Google+ posts and comments.
  1. Monday: 57% of shoppers still plan to do most of their holiday buying after Cyber Monday  Prepare for the big shopping days ahead by scheduling budgets to meet demand. Learn how in the "budget scheduling" section of this helpful article to learn how.
  2. Tuesday: Online ads are surprisingly under-served during the holidays  Take a look at the seasonal spike in shopping queries versus the level supply of ads. Grab people's attention with ads at the top of the page by taking advantage of our newly launched options for Automated Rules.
  3. Wednesday: Searches for "layaway" are heating up  Layaways are catching fire again with budget-conscious consumers at retailers such as Wal-Mart, Target and Kmart - especially in the Southern US. Geo-target your campaigns to areas where holiday shoppers are looking through the Location Targeting Tool.
  4. Thursday: December has arrived, bringing eight projected $1 billion+ online shopping days  Target those last-minute, undecided buyers with keyword terms such as "quick and easy gift ideas." The rush to purchase gift cards has also started, so make sure you have relevant keywords and ads.
  5. Friday Fun Factoid: The Cold Truth  Did you know people in the US catch an average of three colds a year, per person? At about 1 billion colds annually, that's nothing to sneeze at. And this year's cold season could be worse than usual: Cold- and flu-related searches on Google are up by 61% so far over the same period last year. That means we'll see 14.1 million more cold- and flu-related searches this December than last December. So wash your hands before hitting the keyboard and bundle up, folks!
To learn more, follow Think with Google on Google+ or add this helpful holiday calendar to automatically see these tips on your Google Calendar.

Posted by Andrew Truong, Inside AdWords Crew
URL: http://adwords.blogspot.com/2011/12/think-with-googles-december-adventure.html

[G] Find what you need fast in the new AdWords Help Center

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Inside AdWords: Find what you need fast in the new AdWords Help Center

Today we are happy to announce the launch of our new AdWords Help Center for opted in U.S. users. Based on your feedback we redesigned the Help Center to make it much easier for you to find the information for which you're searching.

Here are some of the changes we've made:

1. Simplified navigation: More easily navigate to the right content using the new menu at the top of each page.


2. Visible contact options: Find options to reach Google with a click on the "Contact us" button in the top right of any page.

3. More screenshots and videos: Use the screenshots and videos in many of the articles to quickly learn how to make the most of Google AdWords.

To opt into the new Help Center, select “Try the new look” from the yellow bar at the top of the page.


You can also opt out at any time by selecting “Go back to the old look” in the bottom right corner.

We're rolling the changes out gradually, starting with about 60 of the most important topics. Stay tuned for more updates, as well as the global roll out, over the new few quarters.

Do you like the new Help Center? We'd like to hear what you think. Once you've opted-in to the new Help Center, just click the "Send Feedback" link in the lower right corner of any Help Center page.

You can also follow a thread in the Forum if you have something to share with the users in the AdWords Community.

Posted by The AdWords Help Center Team
URL: http://adwords.blogspot.com/2011/12/find-what-you-need-fast-in-new-adwords.html

[G] Say yes to CS during CSEdWeek

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Official Google Blog: Say yes to CS during CSEdWeek

This Sunday marks the start of the third annual Computer Science Education Week (CSEdWeek), taking place in the U.S. from December 4-10. CSEdWeek underscores the need for strong computer science education programs to ensure the nation has a pipeline of future workers skilled in technology. It’s a call to action that urges local efforts by parents and teachers to not only pay attention to CS education, but also to elevate its status and quality.

Current projections show we’ll have 1.4 million new computing jobs by 2018, but a recent
report from the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and the Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) found that only nine states count high school computer science courses as a core academic subject in graduation requirements. You don’t have to be an engineer to do the math here—if things stay this way, there will be a shortage of skilled workers to fill these valuable jobs.

We want to increase access to education and technology for all students, which is why we support initiatives like CSEdWeek that are vital to accomplishing that very goal. CSEdWeek is a chance to eliminate misperceptions about CS and computing careers and increase awareness about all the opportunities understanding computing enables. Furthermore, a high-quality education that includes CS teaches students skills and processes that will benefit them no matter what field they choose to go into. The overarching goal is to have K-12 computer science become one of the core disciplines in our national education system.

A few ideas about what you can do this week:
  • Students can celebrate CSEdWeek and spread the word by changing their Google+, Facebook, Twitter or other social media profiles to a computer scientist you identify with most.
  • Teachers can use CS Unplugged to teach lessons that explain how computers work, and at the same time, address critical mathematics and science concepts from number systems and algorithms to manipulating variables and logic.
  • Anyone can “Take the Pledge” to join in and/or support teachers, students, parents and others who are participating in CSEdWeek activities and events.
CSEdWeek is a major activity of Computing in the Core (CinC), a non-partisan coalition of which we’re proud to be a member, alongside other corporations, associations, scientific societies and nonprofits striving to elevate computer science education to a core academic subject in K-12 education. Including CS as a core subject will give young people career-readiness knowledge and the skills necessary to thrive in a technology-focused society.

For additional information on CSEdWeek or to find out about events for students, parents and educators in your area, please visit the CSEdWeek website: www.csedweek.org.

Posted by Tara Canobbio, K-12 Education Outreach
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/12/say-yes-to-cs-during-csedweek.html

[G] Create a mobile-friendly website

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Inside AdSense: Create a mobile-friendly website


Did you know that there will be a mobile device for every person on earth by 2015, and that mobile searches have grown by 4x since 20101? That means that every day more and more of your users are looking for your content…on mobile devices. What’s their experience like? Can they easily read what’s on the screen without pinching and zooming? Do you have links that are difficult to click instead of user-friendly navigation buttons?



61% of users are unlikely to return to a site that isn’t mobile friendly2. It’s important to remember that even if users can see a website on a smartphone, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the site is mobile-friendly and easy to navigate. Your users are going mobile as we speak, and so the most important thing you can do to grow your business using the mobile web is to create a mobile-friendly website.



Here are ten tips to help you design a mobile-friendly site:


  1. Keep it quick - Design your site to load fast and make copy easy to scan

  2. Simplify navigation - Create clear navigation and search functionalities

  3. Be thumb-friendly - Design your site so any size hand can easily interact with it

  4. Design for visibility - Make it easy for your customers to read

  5. Make it accessible - Mobile sites should work across all mobile devices

  6. Make it easy to convert - Create clear ways for your users to make purchases or contact you

  7. Make it local - Consumers look for local info on their phones all the time

  8. Make it seamless - Convert as much of the functionality of your desktop site to mobile

  9. Use mobile site redirects - Ensure that visitors who visit your website from a mobile device are redirected to your mobile-friendly site

  10. Listen, learn and iterate - Make testing and optimization an ongoing process



To review a detailed set of these best practices, download a copy of the 10 Mobile Site Best Practices. Visit howtogomo.com to explore actual mobile site examples of each best practice and use the GoMoMeter to see how your site is faring on mobile*.








Finally, take a look at Google Sites for Mobile Landing Pages*, a free and easy-to-use tool that enables you to build mobile pages.



1Gartner, 2010; Google Internal Data, 2011; Cisco, 2011

2Compuware and Brand Anywhere and Luth Research

*Note: These resources are currently only available in English, but will be available in other languages shortly.



Posted by Dairine Kennedy, AdSense Mobile Specialist



URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/tuAm/~3/G6Uyg9Kdspc/create-mobile-friendly-website.html

[G] Take a walk on the sell-side

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Official Google Blog: Take a walk on the sell-side

In June, we announced that we are acquiring Admeld, a New York-based company that helps large publishers (also known as the “sell-side” by people, like me, who live and breathe display advertising) maximize their revenues from online advertising. We’re pleased that the U.S. Department of Justice has today cleared this deal. We’ll close the acquisition in the coming days and then start the real work—building improved products and services that help our publisher partners to make more informed decisions across all their ad space, and to grow their revenues.

The opportunity for major online publishers is huge...and growing. People are spending more and more time consuming online content across numerous devices, advertisers are running more online and mobile campaigns to reach them; and ads continue to get more engaging and relevant. This represents an unprecedented moment for publishers. We believe that improved technology and services can help publishers seize it and make online advertising work much better.

For now, it’s business as usual—Admeld’s products will operate separately to Google’s existing solutions (such as DoubleClick for Publishers and the DoubleClick Ad Exchange). But over time, there are opportunities to bring the best of both businesses together in a variety of ways; and to develop entirely new solutions, too.

As we do this, Admeld and Google are guided by some core shared beliefs:
  • We want to give publishers more control over their ad space, and offer more flexible ways to manage and sell it. Publishers’ businesses should influence the technology they use; not the other way around
  • We believe that publishers can make better decisions to maximize their revenues when they have better insights at their fingertips
  • We envisage a much simpler system that enables publishers to manage and sell their ad space—across desktop, video, mobile, tablets and more
The content produced by Google’s and Admeld’s publisher partners is the lifeblood of the Internet. We can’t wait to start building the next generation of tools and services that will help them grow their businesses.

Posted by Neal Mohan, Vice President of Display Advertising

(Cross-posted on the DoubleClick Publisher Blog)
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/12/take-walk-on-sell-side.html

[G] Eggnog, mistletoe and... pigs?

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Google Chrome Blog: Eggnog, mistletoe and... pigs?

With the help of the Angry Birds team, we’ve cooked up a few early holiday presents for you.


Starting today, you can play a new episode of your favorite game, with 42 exciting levels. And if you are handy with the slingshot, you’ll also be able to find a few new hidden Chrome dimension levels.

In addition, you can check out the first of an additional set of 25 holiday-themed Angry Birds levels. A different level will be unlocked every day until December 25th. There are also three Chrome-exclusive holiday levels that you can unlock with a secret password.


The password will be hidden inside a few apps that can be installed from the Chrome Web Store: Astrid, Earbits, Elfster, Good Food, Google Books and Hipmunk. Follow us on Google+ for some useful hints on how to uncover these magic passwords ;)

And finally, don’t worry if you get stuck on a tough level; you can now summon the Mighty Eagle to the rescue from within Angry Birds. Just click the Eagle icon at the top and turn all pigs into bacon.

Not using Chrome but still want to play? Install Chrome with Angry Birds and make sure those pigs get only coal this year.

Posted by Christos Apartoglou, Marketing Manager
URL: http://chrome.blogspot.com/2011/12/eggnog-mistletoe-and-pigs.html

Thursday, December 1, 2011

[G] Get more into what you love on YouTube with our new look

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Official Google Blog: Get more into what you love on YouTube with our new look

From your favorite sports highlights and dance competitions to make-up tutorials, science experiments and great movies, there’s a ton of great stuff on YouTube—over 3 billion views worth per day by last count. More and more, behind every great video is a great Channel, and with our announcement last month that more of them are coming to YouTube, we want to make it easier for you to find and keep tabs of what you want to watch.

So, today we're introducing a new homepage, Channel design and a fresh coat of digital paint. Here are three ways these updates will improve your life on YouTube:

1. A new homepage
The YouTube homepage is your gateway to a vast entertainment universe. To help you get more into YouTube, we’re making it easier to find and follow great Channels when you arrive. On the left side of the homepage you can create your own, personal, customizable YouTube Channel line-up. Sign in, or create a YouTube account. Then you can browse recommended Channels; customize your homepage’s feed; even link your YouTube account to Google+ and Facebook to see what your friends are sharing. The new homepage feed we launched earlier this year is now front and center on the homepage. You can switch between feeds by clicking on different Channels on the left.

For step by step instructions on using the new YouTube homepage, you can go to our help center.

2. Simpler, customizable Channels
Given the homepage’s new focus on helping you find and organize your favorite Channels, we would be remiss if we didn’t update the look and feel of the Channels themselves. Today we're launching an improved Channel design focused on what matters most: helping users find great videos. As different uploaders have different goals, we've created new Channel templates to meet your needs whether you produce one video a week or have thousands of videos for a fan to browse. Some partners have even uploaded videos talking about the features, or giving tips on how they’re taking advantage of the new design. To learn how to opt-in to and test this new Channel design, check out our help center.

3. A new overall design
To bring the new homepage and Channels designs together we’ve also applied a fresh coat of digital paint across the whole site. In July, we unveiled an experimental design called Cosmic Panda. We’ve used your feedback to improve our overall design, and today, we’re presenting a cleaner and simpler YouTube, with a consistent gray background, bigger video thumbnails and a more streamlined watch page.

Ready to get started? Your new YouTube is already shipped and waiting for you at YouTube.com, and like every new toy, we included an instruction manual (and video) to help.



Our recent Channels expansion, our grants and educational programs, and this new design are all focused on helping you discover a broader range of entertainment on YouTube. We’re always innovating and testing new stuff out to make the experience the best it can be for you. We rely on your feedback to figure out when we've gotten it right and when it needs further tweaks. So let us know what you think.

Posted by the YouTube team
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/12/get-more-into-what-you-love-on-youtube.html

[G] Get more into what you love on YouTube with our new look

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YouTube Blog: Get more into what you love on YouTube with our new look

From your favorite sports highlights and dance competitions to make-up tutorials, science experiments and great movies, there’s a ton of great stuff on YouTube — over three billion views worth per day by last count. More and more, behind every great video is a great Channel, and with our announcement last month that more of them are coming to YouTube, we want to make it easier for you to find and keep tabs of what you want to watch.



So, today we're introducing a new homepage, Channel design and a fresh coat of digital paint. Here are three ways these updates will improve your life on YouTube:



1. A new homepage

The YouTube homepage is your gateway to a vast entertainment universe. To help you get more into YouTube, we’re making it easier to find and follow great Channels when you arrive. On the left side of the homepage you can create your own, personal, customizable YouTube Channel line-up. Sign-in, or create a YouTube account. Then you can browse recommended Channels; customize your homepage’s feed; even link your YouTube account to Google+ and Facebook to see what your friends are sharing. The new homepage feed we launched earlier this year is now front and center on the homepage. You can switch between feeds by clicking on different Channels on the left.



For step by step instructions on using the new YouTube homepage, you can go to our help center.



2. Simpler, customizable Channels

Given the homepage’s new focus on helping you find and organize your favorite Channels, we would be remiss if we didn’t update the look and feel of the Channels themselves. Today we're launching an improved Channel design focused on what matters most: helping users find great videos. As different uploaders have different goals, we've created new Channel templates to meet your needs whether you produce one video a week or have thousands of videos for a fan to browse. Some partners have even uploaded videos talking about the features, or giving tips on how they’re taking advantage of the new design. To learn how to opt-in to and test this new Channel design, check out our help center.



3. A new overall design

To bring the new homepage and Channels designs together we’ve also applied a fresh coat of digital paint across the whole site. In July, we unveiled an experimental design called Cosmic Panda. We’ve used your feedback to improve our overall design, and today, we’re presenting a cleaner and simpler YouTube, with a consistent gray background, bigger video thumbnails and a more streamlined watch page.



Ready to get started? Your new YouTube is already shipped and waiting for you at YouTube.com, and like every new toy, we included an instruction manual (and video) to help.







Our recent Channels expansion, our grants and educational programs, and this new design are all focused on helping you discover a broader range of entertainment on YouTube. We’re always innovating and testing new stuff out to make the experience the best it can be for you. We rely on your feedback to figure out when we've gotten it right and when it needs further tweaks. So let us know what you think.



The YouTube team


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/1ux1Z8gFfew/get-more-into-what-you-love-on-youtube.html

[G] Turkish President Abdullah Gül answers your questions on YouTube World View

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YouTube Blog: Turkish President Abdullah Gül answers your questions on YouTube World View

In the last 10 days, users from all around the world asked 2,692 questions and cast 98,038 votes to determine the most popular questions for the Turkish President Abdullah Gül. You can now head over to www.youtube.com/worldview to watch the President answer a selection of challenging questions ranging from Turkey’s involvement in the current affairs of Syria and the Middle East, the issues of Kurdish minorities, the soaring unemployment rates in the education sector and how he feels he has changed as a person since he became the President. The World View interview was shot in the glamorous reception hall of the Çankaya Presidential compound, with Oğuz Haksever from local media partner, NTV, acting as the moderator.









Zeynep Inanoğlu, Head of Consumer Marketing, Google Turkey, recently watched, Fighting for an AIDS Free Generation by 2015.”


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/WIuhpR1PliE/turkish-president-abdullah-gul-answers.html

[G] Here comes Santa Claus

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Official Google Blog: Here comes Santa Claus

Whether you know him as Père Noël, Weihnachtsmann, Babbo Natale, Father Christmas, Saint Nicholas or Santa Claus, there’s a chance you’re anticipating a visit from the jolly old man this December 24. Although he goes by many different names, the magic he brings to the holidays is felt by children and adults celebrating Christmas all over the world.

Growing up in Lawrence, Kansas, I have fond memories of racing to the tree Christmas morning to see what Santa left during his stop in my town. Sometimes it took a lot of work to stay on the right side of the “naughty or nice” list, but Santa came through for me every year.

Like most traditions, this one has evolved over time. Now, in addition to racing downstairs to their stockings, children can follow Santa online on his annual trip from the North Pole to their chimney. With NORAD Tracks Santa, children and families can watch Santa as he delivers presents all over the globe (with a little help from the North American Aerospace Defense Command). If you haven't yet followed this tradition in your family, we'd like to invite you to join us this Christmas Eve.

The countdown to track Santa begins today. Visit www.noradsanta.org the entire month of December to play holiday games and learn fun facts about NORAD and Santa. Set a reminder for 2 a.m. EST on December 24 to start tracking Santa in real-time on the website using Google Maps, and in 3D with Google Earth. If your phone is handy on Christmas Eve, you can also search for [santa] on Google Maps for mobile to track his journey on the go.

Wherever you are, we look forward to counting down to the holidays with you at www.noradsanta.org. Be sure to finish all your holiday shopping in time so you can join us for the main event on December 24.

In the meantime, to get into the Santa tracking spirit, follow NORAD Tracks Santa on Google+ and enjoy a few highlights from last year’s journey in this video:



Posted by Brian McClendon, VP of Engineering, Google Earth and Maps

(Cross-posted on the Lat Long blog)
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/12/here-comes-santa-claus.html

[G] Taking your channels to a new limit

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Inside AdSense: Taking your channels to a new limit


As you know, channels in your AdSense account are powerful reporting tools. Custom channels help you track ad performance and enable advertisers to target their ads for maximum impact, while URL channels allow you to deep-dive into the performance of AdSense for content on your subdomains.

To date, you’ve been limited to a total of 200 custom and URL channels, and many of you have asked for more. That’s why today, we’re very excited to announce that we’ve raised this limit to 500 custom channels per product, and 500 URL channels for AdSense for content. You’ll see your available custom channels count clearly displayed in the custom channels table, and also highlighted in the “create new custom channel” pop-up.

This change will enable you to expand your testing, and you’ll be able to do more granular analysis of how different formats, ad styles, and ad types perform. In addition, you can use your increased allocation of custom channels to create new ad placements for advertisers to target directly. This can help increase the amount you earn from placement targeting, as advertisers will be able to review the information you’ve provided about your ad units to match their campaigns to your site and audience. As the holidays approach and advertisers look to create additional placement targeted campaigns, now is the perfect time to set up more custom channels and ad placements.

Log in to your AdSense account today and visit your My ads tab to get started.

Posted by Alex Benton -- AdSense Engineering


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/tuAm/~3/U8_SGfE4_OA/taking-your-channels-to-new-limit.html

[G] Bringing Japanese and Hollywood full-length films to YouTube in Japan

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YouTube Blog: Bringing Japanese and Hollywood full-length films to YouTube in Japan

Japan has a long and revered history of cinema. Masters Ozu Yasujiro and Kurosawa Akira have made a lasting influence on the art of filmmaking. Moreover, the Japanese nation is well-known for its voracious appetite of films both local and global.



So we have some great news for all the film buffs in Japan — YouTube will now offer Japanese and Hollywood releases for rent at youtube.com/movies.



We’re starting off with a few hundred titles — both new releases and classic films — from two of the biggest Japanese studios Bandai and Toei, as well as from Hollywood studios Warner Brothers, NBCUniversal, and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. We have the latest "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2", as well as classic animations like "Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn: Day of the Unicorn" and tokusatsu action film "Kamen Rider x Kame Rider W & Decade: Movie War 2010."



Over time we'll be adding additional videos and features to the Movies page, as well as featuring titles from additional studios. Japanese users should check back often on youtube.com/movies to see what’s new.



Yuhei Mizuno, Director of Content Partnerships, Japan, recently watched "AK 100:25 Films by Akira Kurosawa - The Criterion Collection." 


URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/-Pa-PMyhiKk/bringing-japanese-and-hollywood-full.html

[G] More Google Cluster Data

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Research Blog: More Google Cluster Data

Posted by John Wilkes, Principal Software Engineer

Google has a strong interest in promoting high quality systems research, and we believe that providing information about real-life workloads to the academic community can help.

In support of this we published a small (7-hour) sample of resource-usage information from a Google production cluster in 2010 (research blog on Google Cluster Data). Approximately a dozen researchers at UC Berkeley, CMU, Brown, NCSU, and elsewhere have made use of it.

Recently, we released a larger dataset. It covers a longer period of time (29 days) for a larger cell (about 11k machines) and includes significantly more information, including:

  • the original resource requests, to permit scheduling experiments
  • request constraints and machine attriibutes
  • machine availability and failure events
  • some of the reasons for task exits
  • (obfuscated) job and job-submitter names, to help identify repeated or related jobs
  • more types of usage information
  • CPI (cycles per instruction) and memory traffic for some of the machines


Note that this trace primarily provides data about resource requests and usage. It contains no information about end users, their data, or access patterns to storage systems and other services.

More information can be found via this link, which will (after a short questionnaire) take you to a site that provides access instructions, a description of the data schema, and information about how the data was derived and its meaning.

We hope this data will facilitate a range of research in cluster management. Let us know if you find it useful, are willing to share tools that analyze it, or have suggestions for how to improve it.
URL: http://googleresearch.blogspot.com/2011/11/more-google-cluster-data.html

[G] America’s oldest flour company finds success on the web

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Official Google Blog: America’s oldest flour company finds success on the web

From time to time we invite guests to post about items of interest and are pleased to have PJ Hamel, web producer for education and community at King Arthur Flour, join us today. In this post, PJ talks about the unlikely story of a small flour company based in Vermont that’s made it big with the help of the web. -Ed.

This is the story of a small, regional company that sells… flour. Yes, flour. It’s the story of how King Arthur Flour, a centuries-old company, used the web to grow into an international business, devoted to spreading the pure joy of baking throughout the world. Thanks to the web, it’s a story that will stretch far into the future.

Now America’s oldest flour company, King Arthur Flour began in 1790. George Washington had just become the United States’ first President. Despite the recent Revolution, Americans missed their English flour. So Henry Wood, a Boston entrepreneur, began to import flour from England. (Import from England—our arch-enemy? Even then, King Arthur Flour wasn’t afraid to make a bold move.)

Over the next two centuries King Arthur grew, in its own small way. The business gradually moved beyond the Boston area, and sold its flour throughout all of New England (we also moved our HQ to Vermont). In 1990, King Arthur launched The Baker’s Catalogue, a mail-order catalogue selling flour, tools and baking ingredients. Over the next five years, the catalogue helped introduce King Arthur Flour to markets outside of New England.

By 1996, King Arthur Flour was selling like hotcakes, with flour in supermarkets across the U.S. The World Wide Web was also growing in reach. That’s when we decided to make another bold move: taking our business online. We could see the power of the web—how it would enable us to reach customers and markets a small company like ours would never have had access to in the past.

King Arthur’s first site, in retrospect, was crudely designed and very, very basic. It featured five recipes, information about our flours and a bit of our history.


Since then, however, we’ve ramped up our presence on the web—and become tech savvy. Today, we’ve published more than 2,000 recipes online, all tested by bakers in our test kitchen. Over 75 percent of our catalogue sales now come in through our e-commerce site, which we built in 1999. We now connect directly with our customers through our blog, ratings and reviews and the social web.

Customers new and old find us via Google search, through both organic search results and targeted ads; we manage 2,000+ baking-related keywords on Google AdWords. Email marketing, and the spread of our recipes and content throughout the web, have established us as a true resource to millions of people who love to bake. In fact, during the peak of the holiday baking season, we receive almost 2 million site visits and 10 million pageviews per month.

And we’re always looking for new ways to inspire people to try baking. In the past year alone, we’ve implemented:
  • a mobile- and tablet-optimized website
  • the Google Catalogs app for iPad and Android
  • SMS (text message) marketing
  • QR codes on our flour bags and our catalogs
  • Online baking contests
  • Baking Hangouts on Google+ and free, live streamed baking classes
The energy we’ve put into our online presence has produced tremendous growth for the business. Our workforce has quintupled in size, and we’ve built a huge new warehouse to handle the enormous increase in orders and sales. Brand awareness (and flour sales) have reached new heights across the U.S.; indeed, around the world. And significant growth continues year after year, with no signs of slowing down.

King Arthur spent 205 years offline and 16 years (and counting) online. Thanks to the web, this little flour company in Vermont has truly become America’s baking resource. We’re a 221-year-old startup—looking to grow, and loving every minute of it.



Posted by PJ Hamel, Web Producer, Education and Community, King Arthur Flour
URL: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/12/americas-oldest-flour-company-finds.html

[G] Imagery Update: Week of November 28th

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Google LatLong: Imagery Update: Week of November 28th


The winter and holiday seasons are quickly approaching but that hasn’t stopped the Google Earth and Maps Imagery Team from updating aerial and satellite imagery throughout the globe. Today, we’d like to share several interesting features identified in this latest release.

The first example shown below is part of an aerial image acquired this past September of the ski slopes in Breckenridge, Colorado. The slopes have already accumulated several inches of snow over the past few weeks and although it’s still very early in the ski season, a third of all ski lifts are now open! If you can’t make it to the mountains quite yet, be sure to experience the next best thing with Street View imagery from some of the most popular ski destinations.

Perspective view of ski slopes in Breckenridge, Colorado

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is full of iconic landmarks from American history. The aerial image shown below, which was acquired this past October, shows some of the most well known buildings along the east bank of the Schuylkill River. At the bottom left of the image are the fifteen structures comprising Boathouse Row, and the upper right shows the Fairmount Water Works and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. In the far right corner of the image are the stone steps made famous in the Rocky movies.

Boathouse Row, Fairmount Water Works and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

“X” marks the spot in the satellite image below of part of Miramar, Argentina. Of course, the feature is comprised of roads that lead to the town’s central sculpture, Monumento al Gral Alvarado, and the four parks comprising the central plaza.

Miramar, Argentina

As we close in on the Christmas season, it seems appropriate to feature several well known churches that have been updated with new imagery. The first example, shown below, is aerial imagery of the Basilica of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, in Gdańsk, Poland. The structure is considered one of the largest Brick Gothic buildings ever constructed, and has sufficient space to hold 25,000 people!

Basilica of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Gdańsk, Poland

This next example shows updated aerial imagery of Burgos, Spain. In the upper left, is the Burgos Castle, overlooking the Burgos Cathedral in the lower right. This cathedral is famous for its vast size and unique French Gothic architecture.

Burgos, Spain

Finally, below is an updated image of the Calvary Baptist Church of Hi Vista, California, perhaps one of the more notable churches of late. This church was of course used famously in the Kill Bill Vol. I movie as the site of near demise for the heroine, “The Bride.”

Calvary Baptist Church, Hi Vista, California

If you’d like to receive an email notification when the Google Earth and Maps Imagery team updates your favorite site(s), we’ve got just the tool: The Follow Your World application!

These are only a few examples of the types of features that can be seen and discovered in our latest batch of published imagery. Happy exploring!

High resolution aerial updates:
USA: Alamosa, CO; Albany, NY; Altoona, PA; Atlanta, GA; Bartlesville, OK; Bishop, CA; Boise City, OK; Clarksville, TN; Clayton, NM; Edwards, CA; Erie, PA; Georgetown, SC; Great Bend, KS; Guymon, OK; Hot Springs, AR; Lamar, CO; Lawton, OK; Llano, TX; McAlester, OK; Merced, CA; Oklahoma City, OK; Palmdale, CA; Philadelphia, PA; Redding, CA; Roseburg, OR; Scranton, PA; Springfield, MO; Texarkana, TX; Twin Falls, ID; Vail, CO

Poland: Bielsko-Biala, Lubaczowski, Malborski, Mazowieckie, Mielecki, Wolowski, Wolczyn,

Spain: Burgos

Switzerland: Horgen

Countries/regions receiving high resolution satellite updates:
Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Belarus, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Canada, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Finland, France, French Polynesia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Greenland, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lesotho, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, New Zealand, Niger, Nigeria, North Korea, Oman, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Romania, Russia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Svalbard, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Vietnam, West Bank, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe

These updates are now available in both Google Maps and Google Earth. For a complete picture of where we updated imagery, download this KML for viewing in Google Earth.

Posted by Eric Kolb, Geo Data Strategist
URL: http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2011/11/imagery-update-week-of-november-28th.html