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Brin: Stop the Madness!

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Nice piece by LA Times’ Chris Gaither on Brin’s latest call to engineeers at the ‘plex: Stop throwing so much pasta against the wall, I can’t take it!

Massagechari

This may come from Sergey’s inability to spend any more time in the Japanese shaking chair (see link for why).

From the piece:

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — In another sign of Google Inc.’s growth from start-up to corporate behemoth, the company’s top executives said Thursday that they had begun telling engineers to stop launching so many new services and instead focus on making existing ones work together better.

The shift is a major departure from Google’s previous strategy of launching new services rapid-fire and highlights the 8-year-old company’s struggle to stay focused during swift growth.

Co-founder Sergey Brin is leading a companywide initiative called “Features, not products.” He said the campaign started this summer when Google executives realized that myriad product releases were confusing their users.

“It’s worse than that,” said Brin, Google’s president of technology. “It’s that I was getting lost in the sheer volume of the products that we were releasing.”

Google YouTube

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Youtube-1-Tm

Remember back in July when I said that the most logical candidate for acquiring YouTube was Google? Now the Journal agrees, or at least, has one source validating a rumor from TechCrunch….

Google Inc. is in talks to acquire online video site YouTube Inc. for roughly $1.6 billion, according to a person familiar with the matter. The discussions are still at a sensitive stage and could well break off, this person says.

A spokeswoman for closely held YouTube could not be reached for comment. A Google spokesman said, “We don’t comment on rumors and speculation.” Rumors of such talks were reported earlier on the TechCrunch blog.

Predictions….

By - October 05, 2006

Sbob

Remember my predictions for 2006? Well, this one is getting close to number 1….

From IWantMedia:

Nickelodeon Lets Youngsters Make Own Cartoons

Viacom’s Nickelodeon is making available on its Web site technology that allows young fans to make cartoon mashups of different scenes from favorites like “SpongeBob SquarePants” and “Avatar.” Fans can post their creations on their own Web sites and e-mail them to friends.

http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/061004/tv_personal_cartoons.html

Friedman, Oil, Google, Dow Jones….

By - October 04, 2006

260699510 5596C591A7So I had an hour just now, an HOUR!!!, to do whatever I wanted to. And what did I do? I read my feeds. In one sitting. How nice it was. And here’s the highlights:

Haaaaaaaaahahahahaahaha….(via Danny)

Fred rants at the Times for putting important voices like Friedman behind the paywall. I agree.

Barrons and many others cover charges being filed against the HP folks.

Google does new AJAX search API, Gadgets, updated Groups, and a ton of other stuff (another post is coming on that…)

SearchMash – a “secret” place for Google to try new things.

Yesterday the Dow Jones hit a historical high. As I said to my wife – time to start squirreling money away, and perhaps we should consider moving money from those mutual funds to cash.

By the way, and totally random, but can anyone explain why oil prices have dropped so dramatically lately? I mean, really, besides just saying “Karl Rove made it happen”?

The winners of Yahoo Hack Day are here….

Paul likes stealth market research on Google, read more here….

I can’t keep up. Google Movies?!

1500 Diggs and still counting, and I wonder why…

Bebo on the rise in the UK…

It’s Ask sponsored listings news!

Qihoo

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Qihoo%20LogoYahoo! China (operated by Alibaba.com) filed a lawsuit against Sanjiwuxian, the owner of a Chinese search engine called Qihoo, on the grounds of unfair competition. According to the allegations, Qihoo‘s 320safe software was alerting users that Yahoo’s toolbar was malware and prompting deintallation, simultaneously taking a cut at Yahoo toolbar’s market share in China, which is considerable, and slandering the company’s brand image.

(Ironically, a search for “Qihoo” in Google produces the spelling correction “Did you mean: Yahoo?”.)

Google Literacy Project

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Picture 2-20Google launches The Literacy Project, a combination of its products framed to promote literacy and aid educators around the globe– including Bollywood sing-along film Videos, educational Groups and academic Book Search. The project was unveiled at the world’s largest book fair in Frankfurt, Germany today–in cooperation with UNESCO’s Institute for Lifelong Learning and Frankfurt Book Fair literacy campaign (LitCam).

Update: A reader made an interesting suggestion that this was dandy, but wouldn’t it be better if Google allowed users to create their own custom pages per theme? I’ve asked Google and will post the reply here. But also note, some additional editorial choices, in coordination with UNESCO and LitCam, were weaved into the fabric of this project page–it looks like–beyond the work of algorithms certainly, but also with tools requiring discretion above what a typical user might be allowed.

Update Cont’d: Google replied that they are interested in expanding user control in this area, and would be back with more updates along this line. On the LitProject, they facilitated making more materials on literacy available and searchable online– videos, in particular.

I Knew I Was Reading My Stuff Too Much

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Eric Schmidt on blogs while speaking in England: “The average blog has one reader: the blogger”. Damn, I’m caught out.

Update: Interesting response to Eric’s talk here from Micah Sifry – Eric was giving a speech to the annual meeting of the conservative party in Britain, Micah covers all things digital democracy…