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Judge Delays Hearing for Google Book Search

Posted in News by Darrin Olson on September 25th, 2009

Google Book SearchA New York District Court judge on Thursday announced the delay of the Google Book Search hearing and instead will hold a status conference on the scheduled October 7th date. Google Book Search is a settlement case that has been pending for more than four years between Google, the Authors Guild and the Association of American Publishers. The deal would allow Google to digitize millions of out-of-print, coprighted books and make them available for sale to readers online. The authors and publishers of the books would share in sales and advertising profits.

The delay from judge Denny Chin comes due to a recommendation from the Department of Justice who felt that the settlement proposal violates copyright, class-action and antitrust regulations. Chin stated that the hearing currently “makes no sense…as it does not appear the current settlement will be the operative one.”

Google announces reCAPTCHA Acquisition

Posted in News by Darrin Olson on September 17th, 2009

Google Acquires RecaptchaGoogle announced on Wednesday that the company has acquired reCAPTCHA, a company with an online product used for providing a test that humans can pass and computers generally cannot. A CAPTCHA (Completely Automated Turing Test To Tell Computers and Humans Apart) tool is used in many places on the internet and often when submitting information to ensure that it is a human submitting the information and not some bot software filling out forms automatically on the internet.

A CAPTCHA program would provide text that is not easily and usually impossible for a automated character recognition program to decipher, but easy enough that a human could identify the letters in the text. The person submitting the information would then enter the text they see to “prove” that they are human and not a machine.

Google Intros Fast Flip News Reader

Posted in News by Darrin Olson on September 15th, 2009

Google Fast Flip News ReaderOn Monday Google released a new online service to the public called Fast Flip on the companies experimental Google Labs site. The new tool is designed to allow users to see full pages of different magazines and newspapers more as if they were physically viewing them by allowing them to flip through the pages, which it kind of does.

The Fast Flip page is laid out into into sections of popularity, topics and even some particular sources. Static images of the pages of different articles are then shown for the section you are looking for that you can click on. Clicking them shows a larger static image on the page, but not necessarily all of it. You can then move back and forth to static pages of other articles on the subject, or click the source you are viewing again to actually get the web page.

Google Caffeine Web Search Asks for Public Tests

Posted in Google,News by Darrin Olson on August 11th, 2009

Google Caffeine SearchOn Monday Google unveiled what they are calling a “next-generation infrastructure” for their web search, and they are asking the public to give it a try. The “secret” project has been underway for months according to a recent post on the Google Indexing blog, and is almost complete. According to the post, the new system “…will let us push the envelope on size, indexing speed, accuracy, comprehensiveness and other dimensions”.

Google has codenamed the new underlying search indexing “caffeine”, and is looking for the general public to give it a try and provide feedback in the way of differences between the new and old. The new indexing can be tried out at http://www2.sandbox.google.com/, where you can do a search and see if you can tell any difference in the results. According to the blog post from Google, they are only looking for feedback in differences at this time.

Google announces Chrome OS

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on July 8th, 2009

Google announces Chrome OSIt’s finally here. Chrome OS will be an open source platform that can “power computers ranging from small netbooks to full-size desktop systems,” and they claim the OS will be virus free and run a newly-designed windowing system on top of a Linux kernel.

It will be capable of running on x86 and ARM chips. It’s separate from Android, but there will be some overlap in concept and functionality between the two platforms. A large chunk of its Google Apps suite already supports an offline mode, so it’s all ready to go. The company says it’s currently working with several OEM manufacturers and it will initially appear on a number of netbooks coming to market sometime in the second half of 2010.

T-Mobile myTouch 3G spotted

Posted in T-Mobile by Conner Flynn on June 15th, 2009

T-Mobile myTouch 3G spottedWhat’s this? A branded myTouch 3G? Yep. The first T-mobile branded MyTouch 3G shots in the wild. Can a launch be behind? Maybe. Who knows when.

According to the poster on Android Forums, this device was handed out by someone at Google, not T-Mobile. Not much else going on here though. It looks like a nice successor to the G1.

Google gets into ebooks

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on June 1st, 2009

Google gets into ebooksIt hasn’t really been a secret that Google wants into the ebook market. Now it’s happening. Tom Turvey (Google’s director of strategic partnerships) says that the program will be ready by the end of 2009. Details are still a bit scarce, but according to The New York Times, the plan involves selling the books at prices set by the publisher.

This is a departure to the rather strict Amazon pricing guidelines that sees most Kindle titles selling for $9.99 (Many publishers don’t like that). Also, the company will be selling readers online access to the titles. This means that access to your books won’t be limited just to a specific device, but it will require Internet access and some sort of off-line caching.

Google bringing BBC streaming TV to America

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on June 1st, 2009

Google bringing BBC streaming TV to AmericaThe British Broadcasting Corporation which brings us such cool programs as Top Gear, Doctor Who and Planet Earth, is said to be in talks with Google to bring their VOD service to America. Anyone who has ever watched and enjoyed the BBC’s programming knows that this is a good thing.

The BBC produces a bunch of channels that have a wide variety of content and many of these programs never make their way to BBC America, which pretty much just shows fluff. Good news indeed. Once you’ve seen enough English programming, you start to realize just how terrible our own shows are in the states.

Google Wave: Like chat, IM, Twitter and Google Docs in real-time

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on May 28th, 2009

Google WaveGoogle wave should be making waves in no time. Think of it like a live chatroom with a spread of documents, photos and/or videos, where you can reply to any part of any message or anything that’s shared, and it all operates in real-time. Basically TMI.

It’s a combination of Twitter, IM, Friendfeed and other service with semi-real-time stuff. In Google Wave, you can share and collaborate on projects, and all of this is going on at once. Probably great for those with ADD. You start a wave with any message or photo or whatever, and you bring people into the stream, and then they can bring people in.

Palm Pre to have Push GMail

Posted in Palm by Conner Flynn on May 27th, 2009

Palm Pre to have Push GMailMy Pre is reporting that a tipster with a webOS emulator has found that the Pre will use IMAP IDLE. This means that users on GMail will have near instantaneous reception of new emails. Because it’s getting pushed to the phone from the GMail servers.

Pre users are going to love that. At the moment, the only phone to support GMail push is the G1 (and soon the HTC Magic or any other Android device). Palm’s relationship with Google is proving to be extremely awesome for Pre users.

Android smartphone shipments to grow 900% this year

Posted in Google by Shane McGlaun on May 11th, 2009

tmobileg1-arsAndroid got off to a very slow start with the only handset being offered for a long time being the T-Mobile G1. Android has its share of early teething woes that were fixed for the most part with updates and patches. Android is now picking up steam in the market.

Analytic firm Strategy Analytics says that this year Android smartphone shipments will grow by 900%, making it the fastest growing mobile OS in the market. The second fastest growing Os is expected to be the iPhone OS growing 79% over the year.

Android “cupcake” 1.5 available for T-Mobile G1s

Posted in Android by Conner Flynn on April 30th, 2009

Android "cupcake" 1.5 available for T-Mobile G1sT-Mobile G1 users will be like well behaved kindergarten children in that they will be rewarded a new cupcake. The Android Cupcake 1.5 update is now available. Just realize that custom ROMs will make it so that the G1 will not have the ability to receive the update notification.

Lucky for you it’s easy to remove those ROMs. Once that’s done, the official Cupcake update can be applied. With sprinkles on top.

Vodafone Spain first to launch HTC Magic

Posted in HTC by Conner Flynn on April 27th, 2009

Android G2: HTC Magic Officially AnnouncedIn a surprise announcement, Vodafone Spain is set to launch Magic, HTC’s 2nd Android handset, in just an hour or so. The countdown timer appeared early this morning. Vodafone Spain subscribers will have an 8 day head start on the rest of us.

That may seem like forever to Android lovers, but somehow you’ll manage. It’s free with applicable contract on Vodafone UK, but it’s gonna cost you in Spain. Spanish users describe the rate as “outrageous.”

Samsung to release the I7500 Android Smartphone

Posted in Android by Conner Flynn on April 26th, 2009

Samsung to release the I7500 Android SmartphoneWhile it hasn’t been officially announced, German BamS (Bild am Sonntag) has received information that Samsung will launch its first Android smartphone with O2 Germany. Like the HTC Magic, the I7500 will be a touchscreen-only smartphone, running on Android 1.5 (aka Cupcake) plus Google Mobile Services.

Some other features include a Qualcomm MSM7200A CPU at 528 MHz and a 3.2″ HVGA capacitive OLED display, 5 megapixel camera with LED flash and a standard 3.5 mm stereo headset plug. Apparently, the I7500 will support quadband GSM/GPRS/EDGE and dualband UMTS/HSPA, Bluetooth, WIFI and GPS and includes 8 GB internal flash memory which can be expanded by microSD memory cards. t was previously rumored that the S8000 would be Sammy’s first foray into Android.

HTC Magic available May 5th in Europe

Posted in HTC by Conner Flynn on April 20th, 2009

Android G2: HTC Magic Officially AnnouncedAccording to Vodafone’s UK website, HTC’s Android-based Magic will be available on May 5th.

The new phone is the second Android phone to launch in the UK following T-Mobile’s HTC-made G1. It was originally due out on April 17th, but was delayed due to “a last minute hardware change”. If you need a refresher, some features include a 3.2-inch QVGA touchscreen, 3.2-megapixel camera with autofocus, HSDPA and Wi-Fi connectivity as well as GPS.