Tag Archives: Google
We all know how important Google+ is to Google. Heck, we have seen the news stories recently of Googlers leaving over it.
Google is now sending messages to Google AdSense publishers as “recommendations” that they should add Google+ pages to help monetize their own web sites.
The message reads:
Create a Google+ page
Creating a Google+ page brings you closer to your audience by letting you have real conversations with the right people, connecting you face to face, and making it easy for people to recommend you on Google search.
One person cited the irony in this “recommendation” saying “Worth noting that although it’s posted as a “recommendation” there’s no information or suggestion that it would impact your Adsense account in any way.”
Come on Google, relax on Google+ a bit and let the social layer socially be accepted organically. Just like how you tell webmasters to chill out on link development. Seems like these are artificial ways to boost Google+, why not make it better so people switch like you did with Google search?
A WebmasterWorld thread has one AdSense publisher claiming he received a message from Google asking if he wants to participate in an AdSense phone support pilot program where he/she would have a phone session with a Google AdSense representative for free.
The AdSense phone support pilot program seems to happen through Google AdSense’s message center. You receive the message from Google and if you confirm you want to participate, Google will have a representative call you within 72 hours of your acceptance.
This is not the first time we have seen publishers being invited to a phone consultation. We had reports of it back in 2010 when the messages were titled “You’re invited to an AdSense Phone Consultation.”
Then in 2011, Google said they may offer AdSense phone support like they do with AdWords phone support.
So maybe this is the first step in that direction?
Because Google just can’t stop updating its features for its ad services this week, Google AdSense announced enhanced services today intended to give publishers more control over the ads Google delivers to their websites.
As explained in a post product manager Dan Stokeley wrote on the AdSense blog, the updates are in the ad review center. Publisher users can now see ads delivered to their sites via all available types of targeting and review them before they go live. While the ad review center used to group together certain ads for the publisher’s once-over, now they’re broken down on an ad-by-ad level. If you’ve specified types of ads you might want to block, those ads will appear highlighted in the review center, Stokeley explained. The process of selecting ads to block is now just a click-and-drag one.
Also, ads that are generating the most impressions on a user’s site now show up at the top of the list of ads for review, as are placement-targeted ads that Google thinks are likely to generate the most impressions. According to Stokely, ads that receive no impressions or seem likely to receive no impressions won’t appear in the review center at all. With more desirable ads that do appear, publishers will be able to take a closer look by hovering a cursor over any ad for a wider view.
The new ad review center will roll out over “the next few days,” says the AdSense team — unless you use Internet Explorer 7 or an earlier version. If so, you’ll need to get with the program and install a supported browser.
The degree of freedom afforded to the user by nearly any Android device is almost unparalleled in the brief history of mobile devices. You are free to customize the user interface, run services in the background, and even replace system apps. Some of the most savvy users of Android have also taken to gaining root access on their devices for additional control. In fact, many users consider this an essential feature. However, most root methods we have are essentially a dangerous system exploit — a flaw in the software — and this has taken a toll on the community.
By building simple root tools, the Android developer community is doing its best to help you take control of your own device. Those tools are also available to the dark forces of the internet, though. There may be a way forward that reduces user frustration and increases security, but Google seems unlikely to go for it. What we need is an official and safe method for root access on Android.
When Google deploys a new version of Android, several powerful communities of dedicated Android modders begin pouring over the software looking for goodies. One thing everyone is on the lookout for is an exploit that can be used to gain root access. The same is true when an Android OEM puts out a prominent new device. The goal is to give the owners of Android phones and tablets complete control of their devices.
In most ways that matter, this is a good thing. You bought the phone, you should be able to access the hardware and software at the most basic level if that’s what you want. The difficulty comes when the tools developed to empower users are co-opted by malware authors. We sincerely wish this was a rare occurrence, but it seems to be an ongoing trend.
In 2011 there was the spectacularly embarrassing DroidDream outbreak in the Android Market. Dozens of apps were loaded with a community-developed root exploit called RageAgainstTheCage that was used to root unsuspecting devices, then steal sensitive information. DroidDream was eventually brought under control, but it does still float around the murkier parts of the net. Luckily, this exploit was patched in Android 2.2.2.
Just a few weeks ago another Android trojan, called RootSmart, has started popping up online (though happily not in the Play Store) using a newer Android root tool developed with good intentions. RootSmart uses the GingerBreak exploit to root phones silently and sign you up for expensive SMS services. GingerBreak works on Android 2.3.3 or earlier, as well as several versions of Honeycomb 3.x. This trojan is currently only circulating in Asia, but it shows the problem isn’t going away.
The current way of doing things is also resulting in some real annoyances for users that just want to truly own their devices. These root methods are technically a security hole, and it would be irresponsible for Google or the OEMs to leave them open to attack. New software is rolled out to patch the bug, but that just means the arms race will continue to escalate. You update, lose root, and then have to search for yet another method.
The update situation with Android is, as everyone knows, awful. So even when the Android platform is updated to patch known exploits, some of the most vulnerable users that just wanted a cheap smartphone could get left behind with insecure devices.
Google’s online storage service, rumored to be called GDrive is the like the wolf in the fable, The Boy Who Cried Wolf. Well, after long history of false alarms, the storage drive might just see the day in early April, according to my well placed sources familiar with company’s plans. I say might, just because of Google’s history with the Google Drive.
The rumors of Google’s Gdrive first emerged in 2006 and then in 2007 via The Wall Street Journal. Nothing came of those rumors. Two years later, same story, and one more time, nothing came to fruition. In 2010, Google announced that it would allow you to upload documents and files to Google Docs. In February 2012, the rumors started again with another report from The Wall Street Journal.
However, if all goes to plan, this time we might see it for real. I am told the big day is sometime during the first week of April 2012. Google, of course is not talking. A spokesperson sent me the boilerplate — we don’t comment on rumors or speculation.
According to the details from my sources, Google is going to offer 1 Gb of storage space for free, but will charge for more storage. The market leader Dropbox currently offers 2 Gb for free. Google’s product will come with a local client and the web interface will look much like the Google Docs interface. Interestingly, it will launch for Google Apps customers and will be domain specific as well. Google has also built an API for third party apps with this service so folks can store content from other apps in the Google drive. My sources are impressed, so far with what they have seen.
I have watched Google and have been amazed by its inability to launch a cloud storage offering. When I wrote about it earlier this year, many readers weighed in with smart comments that are worth reading.
The Google I/O 2012 conference sold out its allotment of 5,500 tickets within 20 minutes today, a company executive said.
I/O, which has been held since 2008, is Google’s annual developers conference that covers everything from Android and Chrome to Google+ and its cloud-based services. This year’s event will be held June 27-29 at San Francisco’s Moscone Center, the same venue Apple traditionally uses for its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC).
Google opened ticket sales at 7 a.m. PT, and suspended them about 20 minutes later when supplies ran out, said Vic Gundotra, the company’s senior vice president of engineering, in a post to Google+.
“We were experiencing [a] 6,250 [queries per second] load on our servers at 7:01 a.m.,” said Gundotra.
The $300 tickets for students and faculty sold out slightly faster than the $900 general admission tickets.
Last year’s Google I/O sold out in just under an hour, while 2010′s version took 50 days to reach sell-out.
Google said it had set aside 5,500 tickets for this year’s event, nearly three times the number for the confab’s 2008 debut.
Developer events have been a hot ticket — no pun intended — of late. Last year, for example, Apple sold out WWDC inside of 12 hours, even though tickets cost $1,599 each.
In 2010, WWDC tickets lasted about eight days.
As Gundotra noted the fast sell-out, he also committed the company to live-streaming the opening-day keynote and what he called “key sessions.” Other conference sessions will be available 24 hours after they occur, he said.
In the past, scalpers have posted passes to Google I/O and Apple’s WWDC on sites like eBay and Craigslist, looking for a major return on their investment. Last year, for instance, tickets to Apple’s WWDC ranged from $2,125 to $4,599.
The same held true today: By 9:30 a.m. PT, one Google I/O ticket was being hawked on eBay for $2,700, or three times its face value.
Google is reportedly working on evolving Google+ into a Facebook comments rival, with plans to position the social network as an alternative to Facebook and Disqus for third-party sites with the lure of potentially better Google search indexing to sweeten the deal. The move, tipped at G-Saudi Arabia Tech-WD reports, would also have the side benefit of driving more users to Google+, as well as bringing users’ comments together as an extension of existing “+1″ summaries.
Currently, Disqus and Facebook are the best known of the third-party commenting systems. The benefit to sites is that storage and login credentials are handled by an external company, while for users it’s a single login across multiple sites and the convenience, in the case of Facebook, of optionally auto-posting to their wall.
However, comments left don’t normally show up well in search engine indexing, something Google obviously knows plenty about. With Google+ powered comments, the feedback could be indexed and come up in relevant searches, integrated with existing people results added as part of the Google Search plus Your World update. Obviously it’s in Google’s best interests to be the hub of online discourse, and it could also benefit from tracking where Google+ users comment online.
Each individual comment, meanwhile, could have its own unique URL – something suggested by CNET – which would allow for more precise linking as well as each comment to be its own, separately indexed search result. Given the popularity of Google search, and Facebook and Twitter’s reluctance to allow the company to include their content in results, it looks like Google is planning to simply bypass them altogether.