Major imagery update on Google Earth
For its first birthday, Google Earth gets updates, most impresively “sub-meter high-resolution imagery available for more than one third of the world’s population. While initially available only in Google Earth, this database will also be accessible in Google Maps shortly.” And a peek at the future: Earth with interactive touch sensors and voice recognition.
Aiming for quantity and quality at Google Video
A zeitgeist-y ranking of Google videos rising in popularity is now available, organized per 40 countries. The algorithm ranks video popularity based on both the viewer reach and rate of views. Oh, BTW…Google wants to host all the world’s videos and currently places no file size restrictions on hosted videos, according to GV business manager Hunter Walk, talking in an interview with Beet.TV.
Mikons symbol tags
Mikons launches, bringing symbolism to social tagging and search networks. The Mikon Machine provides a free online vector editing graphic tool that allows users to design their own tradable symbols. The visual personal tags can be exported to other online social applications.
Support from a passive search community
Baynote features search backed by community confidence without requiring explicit tagging actions by users, instead tracking user interest by cues such as bookmarking, clipping, or printing.
Spreadsheets fall short
While some users have found Google Spreadsheets useful, most online reviews conclude the first free online spreadsheets aren’t quite ready for prime-time–with lingering concerns over privacy and limited capabilities (though the beta’s bare bones are expected to soon be fortified).
Picasa Web Albums
Google’s Picasa introduces a test version of Web Albums, with 250 MB free storage space and photo sharing capabilities.
The big purple brain
A Yahoo promo perches 25 Answers experts in a “gigantic purple brain (complete with firing synapses),” responding to questions sent up from passersby on street-level for 72 straight hours.
Its search market share continues to grow. “Compared with March 2006, the May figures from Hitwise show Google gaining 1 percentage point of share, Yahoo staying almost flat and Microsoft losing 1 percentage point.” (IDG News Service). And, an update on progress in Google’s wifi aims and efforts in San Francisco and Mountain View.