Rumor has it that Google may be buying Twitter. Michael Arrington of TechCrunch reports that he has two unnamed sources who say that they are in the late stages of negotiations. Twitter already turned down an offer from Facebook, although that deal involved overvalued stock. Google plans on paying cash and/or public stock. We guess that this is a win-win for both. Twitter founders Evan Williams and Biz Stone have already sold Blogger to Google and considering that tweeting is more popular all the time, this will involve big profits down the line.
Read More | TechCrunch
Blackberry users can now search with Google Mobile by My Location and Voice. Tell it you want a hamburger and it will tell you where the closest restaurants are. It will store your location for faster and more relevant results. The application gives quick access to local and Internet news and images. You can test run it on your Blackberry by going to Google. The app will work with Blackberrys running on O/S 4.1+ and with Search by voice on O/S 4.2 and above, and they are working on a version for the Storm.
Read More | Google Mobile Blog
Sony is offereing its Reader users half a million public domain books. The Google optimized books are added to the 100,000 already available for the e-book. Included are such titles as “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court,” “The Awakening” and “The Letters of Jane Austen.” Google has been encoding books in the open electronic format ePub to make such titles more available to Sony and other e-book distributors.
Read More | NY Times
Google has a new tool that they are testing. PowerMeter will show home energy usage in real time on your PC. You set the rate of your electricity charge, plug in your appliance and a monitor will calculate the cost. Forty million trackers are already in use and Google predicts that another 100 million will be bought in the next few years. Studies show that those who have access to home energy information can save up to 15% of their electricity bills. PowerMeter is not yet available but should be soon.
Read More | CNN
YouTube has begun testing a sub-set of their partners with a charge for download. Most of them are available for about $.99 but only as MP4 files. They can be purchased through Google Checkout. This may put an end to the problems that site has had with studios like Warner. If the program is successful, look for them to allow all of its partners to charge for movies and TV shows on the site.
Read More | Read Write Web
Google has added 3D renderings of the ocean floor in its latest update since 4.3. Google Earth 5.0 is still free to download. Track gray whales, explore shipwrecks and see what the water looked like up to 50 years ago. Also in the new Google Earth are maps and satellite images of Mars, including probe landing spots, and you can save your toured places to share with other GE users.
Read More | Google Earth
Even Google can screw up. If you noticed yesterday that when you hit a search you got the error screen “may harm your computer,” you weren’t the only one. The period only lasted about 40 minutes but we guess that was long enough to freak a few Googlers out. Their engine works with stopbadware.org that helps find malicious software then sends a list to them. After updating Saturday, Google accidentally flagged all of their sites. The company attributed the problem to “human error.”
Read More | BBC
This should be a lesson to all those parents who complain when their kids ask for cell phones. Utilizing Google Street View and a mobile phone signal, a 9 year-old girl has been found after she was allegedly kidnapped by her grandmother. After Natalie Maltais went missing in Athol, Massachusettes in what was supposed to only be a weekend, police officer Todd Neale used the girl’s cell phone to track them. Fire chief Thomas Lozier used View to locate the hotel in Virginia where the child and grandmother were found.
Read More | BBC
Word has come down that after the Chinese government decided to limit Internet usage, 3 of the sites in question decided to apologize. Gaming sites NetEase and SINA were two of them. Baidu also issued one “to the netizens at large for the negative impacts we brought upon the society.” They also claimed that they had deleted the content and links in question. The oddest remark came from the BBC’s Micky Bristow who said China is trying to protect its young people. We will see where this goes and get back to you “youngsters.”
Read More | BBC
China has decided to cut back on their country’s Internet access to porn and obscene content by blacklisting 19 portals and sites. Included in that list are Netease, Baidu and Google. The deputy director of the State Council Information Office, Cai Mingzhao, said “Immediate action is needed to purify the Internet environment.”
Supposedly the Chinese Google has links to porn sites and although China’s Internet Illegal Information Reporting Center asked them to take them off, nothing was done. A spokesperson there said, “Google is neither the owner of those Web sites and porn nor does it spread (that) information intentionally.” We figure if someone wants to find that sort of content, there is always a way.
Read More | CNN
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