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Google at work on desktop Linux

Search engine giant preps own version of Ubuntu

Google is preparing its own distribution of Linux for the desktop, in a possible bid to take on Microsoft in its core business - desktop software.

A version of the increasingly popular Ubuntu desktop Linux distribution, based on Debian and the Gnome desktop, it is known internally as 'Goobuntu'.

Google has confirmed it is working on a desktop linux project called Goobuntu, but declined to supply further details, including what the project is for.

It's possible that it's just one of the toys Googleplex engineers play with on Fridays, when they get time off from buffing the search engine code or filtering out entries about Tiananmen Square.

It could be for wider deployments on the company's own desktops, as an alternative to Microsoft, but still for internal use only.

But it's possible Google plans to distribute it to the general public, as a free alternative to Windows.

Google has already demonstrated an interest in building a presence on the desktop. At CES Las Vegas this month, it announced the Google Pack, a collection of desktop software bundled together for easy downloading.

Full article: The Register
 Posted by Picasa
Google at work on desktop Linux - Tuesday, January 31, 2006 -

Google extends Mini search tool

Tool can let firms search internet, files and intranets

Google has updated its Google Mini corporate search appliance, which it says could prompt medium-sized firms in Europe to use the engine for web, intranet and internal document searches.

The new versions will have the same features as the standard Mini, but increase the search capacity from 100,000 documents to either 200,000 or 300,000, according to Google’s European enterprise director, Roberto Solimene. They are priced at £3,995 and £5,995.

Read more: vnunet.com
 Posted by Picasa
Google extends Mini search tool - Monday, January 30, 2006 -

Google unveils corporate search toolbar

Administrators can manage the software from a single point

BURLINGAME, CALIF. - Google dominates the search business, but it wants even more. Today the company rolls out yet another new product--a search toolbar geared toward businesses--and it has updated its popular existing desktop toolbar.

The desktop toolbar--essentially a pint-sized window designed to sit on an Internet browser frame--makes an easy entry point for initial searches. But Google (nasdaq: GOOG - news - people ) is also making the application more useful for other chores.

“We’re focused on making the toolbar more personal and relevant to each individual user,” says Sundar Pichai, group product manager for Google.

Google's updated toolbar is compatible with Microsoft's (nasdaq: MSFT - news - people ) Internet Explorer and features customizable buttons that can visit and search specific sites and automatically update with new feeds. This toolbar also features an enhanced search box and the ability to share Web pages via blog, e-mail or text message. It will also let users sign on to their Google account.

Read more: vnunet.com
 Posted by Picasa
Google unveils corporate search toolbar - -

Lunar New Year

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Lunar New Year - Sunday, January 29, 2006 -

Google Talk Beta

They say talk is cheap. Google thinks it should be free. Google Talk enables you to call or send instant messages to your friends for free–anytime, anywhere in the world. Google Talk offers you:

• Choice: Get in touch how and when you want to–over email, IM or a call

• Quality: Talk through your computer but hear your friends as if they were in the same room

• Convenience: Your Gmail contacts are pre-loaded into Google Talk so inviting or talking to your friends is just a click away

Requires Windows XP/2000, minimum 56k (broadband recommended)
Mac and Linux users can connect to Google Talk using other IM clients

Google Talk is in beta and requires a Gmail username and password.

Download: Google Talk Beta
 Posted by Picasa
Google Talk Beta - Friday, January 27, 2006 -

250th Birthday of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

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250th Birthday of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - -

Martin Luther King Day

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Martin Luther King Day - Monday, January 16, 2006 -

BlackBerry Meets Google Talk

Research in Motion (RIM) announced on Thursday that its BlackBerry platform will support Google Talk instant messaging and Google Local for mobile.

Google also announced Google Mobile Personalized Home Page, while RIM said it would distribute synch software for Macs.

"Instant messaging and local content are two increasingly important areas of focus for mobile applications and we are very pleased to work with Google in extending these two popular Google services to BlackBerry users,” Mark Guibert, vice president of corporate marketing at RIM, said in a statement.

Google Talk for BlackBerry, expected to be available in the spring, is a version of Google's instant messaging application specifically designed for BlackBerry handsets. BlackBerry users will be able to send and receive instant text messages with other Google Talk users; the BlackBerry app will have the same functionality as the desktop version.

When it launched Google Talk, the search goliath said it wanted to make its IM service, which is based on XMPP (define), interoperate with the other networks. Google executives weren't available to discuss whether the creation of a special version for BlackBerry means that global interoperability of Google Talk isn't likely.

BlackBerry users also can download Google Local, giving them access to maps, satellite imagery, driving directions and searches for local businesses.

Full article: internetnews.com
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BlackBerry Meets Google Talk - Thursday, January 12, 2006 -

Google Earth Mac 3.1.0527 Beta

The idea is simple. It’s a globe that sits inside your PC. You point and zoom to anyplace on the planet that you want to explore. Satellite images and local facts zoom into view. Tap into Google search to show local points of interest and facts. Zoom to a specific address to check out an apartment or hotel. View driving directions and even fly along your route. We invite you to try it now.

Google Earth
is free for personal use. No registration is required. You may (optionally) choose to upgrade to Google Earth Plus.


• Free for personal use.
• Sophisticated streaming technology delivers the data to you as you need it.
• Imagery and 3D data depict the entire earth - Terabytes of aerial and satellite imagery depict cities around the world in high-resolution detail.
• Local search lets you search for restaurants, hotels, and even driving directions. Results show in your 3D earth view. Easy to layer multiple searches, save results to folders, and share with others.
• Layers show parks, schools, hospitals, airports, shopping, and more.
• KML – data exchange format let your share useful annotations and view. thousands of data points created by Google Earth users.

Use it for:

-Planning a trip
-Getting driving directions
-Finding a house or apartment
-Finding a local business
-Exploring the world

Download: Google Earth Mac 3.1.0527 Beta
 Posted by Picasa
Google Earth Mac 3.1.0527 Beta - Wednesday, January 11, 2006 -

Google Video Store goes live

The Google Video Store was online late Monday after being announced Friday--and judging from first impressions, Blockbuster Video and NetFlix may not have much to worry about yet.

The video store was accessible at the top of the main Google Video page with four rotating featured videos. At one point they were: "Star Trek Voyager-Tattoo," on sale for $1.99; the Jan. 4 Heat-Hornets basketball game for $3.95; an ITV news segment of the Christmas dinner held by British troops in Bosnia in 1995; and a video that teaches youngsters "essential early-learning color concepts" for $2.49.

A drop-down menu lets people browse selections of NBA basketball games, movies and music videos, as well as television shows like "The Brady Bunch," "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine," "Nova" and "The Ed Sullivan Show."

Diving into the video selections unearthed tantalizing titles including "Birth Control: Myths & Methods, Spanish Version," "Bobbito's Basics to Boogie" and "ChinaPortal Presents: Xu Genbao and the Future of Chinese Soccer Part 1."

A search for the keywords "John Wayne" turned up a 1934 movie titled "Blue Steel" for sale for $1.99, a bunch of interviews with James Garner and other movie stars, and video from a 2005 Long Beach city council meeting.

The main Google Video page also has rotating feature videos categorized under "popular" and "random" sections. Samples of those included the notorious Tom Cruise appearance on "Oprah Winfrey," a "biker dancing silly" and a documentary claiming to expose "the conspiracy between the Free Masons, U.S. presidents and the 9/11 terrorists attacks."

The Web site adheres to the Google philosophy of less-is-more but lacks any slick design elements that would signal the existence of sexy content such as, say, movies. And, rather than still images from videos to click on for a sample clip, many thumbnail images and preview boxes feature only plain screens with the name of the show--or a blank black box.

Full article: CNET News.com
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Google Video Store goes live - -

Google Pack Beta

Google Pack is a free collection of essential software from Google and other companies. The software in the Google Pack helps you browse the web faster, remove spyware and viruses, organize your photos, and more.

Google Pack is:

• Essential: Enjoy safe, useful software for your computer
• Simple: Download and install everything in just a few clicks
• Customizable: Choose only the software you want
• Up to date: Get updates and new software via Google Updater

Google Software Included: Google Earth, Google Desktop, Picasa, Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer, Google Pack Screensaver.

Additional Software Included: Mozilla Firefox with Google Toolbar, Ad-Aware SE Personal, Norton Antivirus 2005 Special Edition, Adobe Reader 7.

Google Pack is only available for Windows XP

Download: Google Pack Beta
 Posted by Picasa
Google Pack Beta - Sunday, January 08, 2006 -

Google entering video-on-demand business

LAS VEGAS--Google announced a service Friday that will let people rent or buy downloadable videos online, including classic and contemporary CBS television shows and NBA basketball games.

With Google Video Store, which the company said will be "available soon" at video.google.com consumers will pay $1.99 to download and view, for an unlimited time, episodes from last season's "Survivor" series, as well as episodes of 300 older TV programs like "I Love Lucy," said Peter Chane, senior business product manager for Google Video. The announcement was made in conjunction with a keynote address by Google co-founder Larry Page at the Consumer Electronics Show here.

Also for $1.99, people will be able to rent, for 24 hours, recent episodes of popular TV series from CBS like "NCIS," "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" and "The Amazing Race," Chane said. National Basketball Association games shown on TV can be downloaded for permanent purchase within one day of broadcast for $3.95, he said. Classic NBA games will also be available.

Full article: CNET News.com
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Google entering video-on-demand business - -

Louis Braille Birthdate

Louis Braille
was born in town near Paris, France in 1809. As a toddler he used to watch his father make shoes. One day, while his father was not watching, he picked up a sharp pointed tool for making holes in leather called an awl. The awl slipped, piercing his eye and damaging it beyond repair. The other eye became infected and before long Louis Braille was completely blind.

At the age of 10 Louis was sent to a school for blind children in Paris. Children were taught to read and write using a system of raised letters. This system was difficult to use as it was hard to tell the letters apart. One day a soldier called Charles Barbier visited the school. He had developed a system for reading messages in the dark based upon a series of raised dots. Louis Braille realised the potential of this system and developed it so that it could be used for blind people.

Louis Braille's system was not accepted at first. One Headteacher even banned the children from using it but this only spurred them on to learn it in secret. Soon the benefits of the new system were realised.

When Louis Braille grew up he became a teacher at the school in which he was a student. It was not until after his death, however, that his system was widely adopted. Today, Braille is used in almost every country in the world. Posted by Picasa
Louis Braille Birthdate - Wednesday, January 04, 2006 -

Google denies PC maker rumours

But hardware theories live on...

Google has denied reports it is to make any moves into the PC sector.

Rumours of a low-cost Google PC first surfaced following an article in the LA Times which quoted sources as saying the search giant was in talks with Wal-Mart and other retailers with a view to selling a Google computer.

In addition to denials from Wal-Mart, a Google spokeswoman quashed the idea that the search company had its eye on the personal computing market.

She told silicon.com: "The LA Times story is completely untrue," adding the company would prefer to work with its existing partners on PCs.

When queried over any plans Google may have to move into the wider hardware space, the company spokeswoman refused to be drawn.

Full story: silicon.com
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Google denies PC maker rumours - -

Google to 'launch own PC'

Windows-free, of course

Google is planning to provide an own-brand Windows-less PC and sell the low-cost system through a partnership with retail giant Wal-Mart. The machine and/or the sales deal could be announced as early as this coming Friday.
So claims the Los Angeles Times, citing unnamed sources. Whether they've seen the text of Google co-founder Larry Page's Consumer Electronics Show keynote, which he'll make in Las Vegas on Friday, isn't clear, but it's suggested that the talk will cover the new box.
As the paper notes, analysts from investment house Bear Stearns last month claimed Google was preparing a box capable of shuffling digital Internet-sourced media content around the home across local wireless or wired networks.
Crucially, the rig is said to be based on Google's own operating system - most likely Linux in Google clothing - rather than Windows.

Full article: The Register
 Posted by Picasa
Google to 'launch own PC' - Tuesday, January 03, 2006 -

Happy New Year!

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Happy New Year! - Sunday, January 01, 2006 -

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