Take that, Google! Microsoft has managed to one-up Google by investing $240 million for a 1.6% share in Facebook. It also has the rights to sell ads on the site outside of the U.S. Some experts say that they are hoping that the company will expand and become a “hub” for its various Net applications. So far, Facebook has about 50 million subscribers and claims that it receives 250,000 new ones every day. Microsoft hopes that it will reach a forecasted 300 million. We figure that MS is partying hearty over this one since Google beat them out last year with its acquisition of YouTube.
Read More | Reuters
Gmail, Google‘s popular web based email solution is likely about to get IMAP features - a welcome addition for email power-users. It appears that some users are seeing options to IMAP-enable their account in the settings page. This will help Google’s service compete with Yahoo Mail which has offered IMAP access for some time now.
We don’t yet have the option on our accounts here at Gear Live, but we definitely look forward to trying it out. If your account has the new option, be a pal and leave a comment to let the world know what you think.
Read More | Download Squad
YouTube has finally released the means to automatically remove copyrighted clips. Although it has been eliminating most of those videos per request, the site is hoping that this will have a more positive impact on complaints such as Viacom’s suit against them. Working with its parent Google, the technology also allows companies to sell ads on their material if they will allow them to remain on YouTube. Unfortunately, the method of copyright protection requires copies of the videos that need protecting to be given to YouTube for comparison. This certainly doesn’t appear to be the solution that the studios desire and we suspect that YouTube will have to go back to the drawing board on this one.
Read More | ABC
Citing claims of privacy invasion and terrorisim, a one Dylan Jayne has filed a (handwritten) suit against Google. Mr. Jayne (who gives one of our favorite Firefly characters a bad name) seems a bit off his rocker on this one. He states that not only has Google failed to fight terrorisim, but they also seem to have invaded his privacy as indicated by the following statement: “I, Dylan Stephen Jayne, plaintiff, has [sic] a social security number that when the social security number is turned upside down in its entirety it is a scrambled code that does spell the name Google®.”
Last time I checked Google’s business model didn’t seem to cover stopping terrorism, leaving that job to the ‘professionals’ over at Homeland Security. His claims of privacy invasion also seem a little far fetched - it’s hard to think a fortune 100 company would pick it’s name based soley on the Social Security number of a lone loser from Pennsylvania.
In a way it’s a sad statement about the United States legal system that a case like this will even be heard by a judge. If Mr. Jayne can’t even be bothered to type up his Complaint can he really be considered compentent enough with computers to really even understand what exactly it is that Google does? Check out the Ars Technica article for more information on this weird little case and keep your eyes peeled here late breaking news as it percolates through the Justice system.
Read More | Ars Technica
Adventurer Steve Fosset and his plane still have not been recovered after about 2 weeks. A few organizations teamed up to find him with the use of a GeoEye satellite that is tracking the Nevada territory where he was last thought to be. Using Google Earth, you can get in on the search. You will have to download a KML file and cut and paste the coordinates in the “Fly To” box. Think of the ramifications for finding others missing that using this technology will be able to accomplish in the not so very distant future.
Read More | Live Science
We suppose that Google is not satisfied with its new Sky, but then again maybe they have just gone a tad space loony. The company has offered a $30 million reward to the first private company that sends a robotic rover to the moon and sends back a gigabyte of images.
Partnered with the X Prize Foundation, who hosted the contest that sent non-astronauts into space, Google says that the rules involve the device traveling at least 1,312 feet across the surface and having high-def video and still cameras to send self-portraits, panoramic views, and near-real time videos. More details will become available during the WIRED Nextfest in LA this week.
Read More | ABC
The University of Washington and its Professor Oren Etzoni released PanImages at the recent Machine Translation Summit in Copenhagen. Instead of searching for photos by text that may not be recognizable, the system recognizes a string of letters in about 300 different languages and looks for them in Google and Flickr. In a recent test of the process, PanImages found 57 times more results than on an average search.
The procedure works by scanning machine readable wiktionaries. As an example, Etzioni said that if you type in the Zulu word for refrigerator (“ifriji’) you would get almost 500,000 results as opposed to 2 on available search engines. While we seem to be over-saturated with images by using English, it is a comfort to know that the Zulus will be able to find appliances with less of an effort now.
Read More | Tech News Watch
Google Blogger, beware! Fake entries containing links to downloads can infect your Windows run PC. Computers that catch the virus are checked for saleable data or used as carriers. The links began in January by hackers dubbed “Storm Trojans” and may actually been have set up for allowing others to view e-mail entries on their Blogger Journals. Here are some of the storm worm subject lines:
- are you kidding me? lol
- Dude dont send that stuff to my home email…
- Dude your gonna get caught, lol
- HAHAHAHAHAHA, man your insane!
- I cant belive you did this
- LMAO, your crazy man
- LOL, dude what are you doing
- man, who filmed this thing?
- oh man your nutz
- OMG, what are you thinking
Some of the messages feature links to YouTube while others claim to be offering testing software or digital greeting cards. The group has reportedly infected over a million PCs in that time. We suggest it might be time to get a Mac, run Firefox, or find another outlet for your blogging.
Read More | BBC
Who needs a planetarium when you can explore the Google Sky? With it you can view 200 million galaxies, 100 million stars, constellations, a supernova, and planets in motion. You can also see the heavens with over 120 high-res images from NASA’s Hubble telescope. All you need is a download of the current Google Earth, then click on the Sky button on the toolbar. Available in 13 languages, check out the Gallery and discover space from different sources on Earth. We think we would like to experience the Milky Way from Paris, even if it is only on our PC.
Read More | Google
In January, Mark Ontkush wrote a blog that commented that using a black version of Google would save about 3000 megawatts a year, since a white page uses 74 watts and a black one only 59. Toby Heap thought Mark’s idea was such a good one that Blackle was created. The site reports that just since its Febuary release, 95,918.333 watt hours have been saved. You know that Gear Live is trying to help the world become a greener place, so we thought we would give it a try and found that the darkened screen not only worked fine, it had a nice Zen effect. Everybody say “O-h-h-h-m-m-m.”
Read More | Blackle