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Internet & Websites Posts - Page 75

Google search is being updated, more like Ask

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In the upcoming months, Google's web search will no longer just spit out a list of web links that match your query. It will start to present facts and direct answers at the top of the results page. These changes are among the biggest that the search giant have ever undergone and are a result of trying to keep a dominant market-share.

 

While Google isn't replacing its current keyword-search system, they are aiming to provide more relevant results by incorporating technology called "semantic search". Semantic search is the technology related to attempting to understand the meaning of the words themselves and provide relevant results. Over the past two years, Google has been quietly amassing a database of hundreds of millions of entities-people, places and things-which can provide data matched to queries.

 

After these updates, a Google query for "Lake Tahoe" would result in a listing of key attributes, such as its location, altitude, average temperature or salt content, above the usual listing of links based upon the old keyword search algorithm. When a more complex question is provided, Google may provide just an answer, rather than links to other sites. An example query would look something like, "What are the 10 largest lakes in California?" This query would likely return the answer, rather than links to other sites.

Continue reading 'Google search is being updated, more like Ask' (full post)

Flickr intros 'justified' view, its latest updated design

Photo sharing service Flickr, talked last month of an update coming to their site, and design, which would brush away some of the old dead weight design, and usher in something new. This "something new" is now here, in the form of a "justified" view.

 

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The new "justified" view fills the screen with photos, whilst maintaining the aspect ratios, and is now justifying its way into the streams of users photos. On top of the new layout, justified view also lets you favorite, comment, or view a photo in a light box (fullscreen) directly from the thumbnails.

 

The new justified view hasn't rolled out for everyone just yet, but it does fix most peoples complaints about the sites design. If you don't like the new justified look, you can always go back to the previous looks, by clicking the drop down menu in the upper right-hand corner.

YouTube streams more than 4 billion videos every day

Google's video website, YouTube, is streaming an absolutely mind-boggling 4 billion videos each and every day. This is a 25-percent increase over the last eight months, according to the company.

 

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Why the sudden jump in viewing numbers? Google have pushed YouTube beyond the PC, with YouTube having its own app on smartphones, tablets and televisions, as Google step up efforts to offer more professional-grade content on the site. According to Google, roughly 60 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube every 60 seconds, this is compared to the 48 hours of video uploaded per minute back in May of 2011.

 

Google acquired YouTube in 2006 for a nice $1.65 billion, and now represents one of Google's key opportunities to generate new sources of revenue outside of its traditional Internet search advertising business.

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IPv6 launches on June 6th, 2012, Skynet launches shortly after

Mark it in your calendars, folks, June 6th is officially "World IPv6 Launch" day. A coordinated launch of the next-generation Internet protocol. On that day, various companies and corporations will begin to close the gaps and begin to deliver, true, end-to-end, next-generation Internet.

 

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IPv6 is the replacement for the current version of IPv4 that is running out of addresses. The original IPv6 specification was actually published more than 15 years ago now, but it's only just this year that we'll finally start to see the beginning of it. IPv6 ushers in the ability to connect together billions of devices, both fixed and mobile, from the largest cloud-based systems, to the smallest Internet-connected sensors.

 

Google have now joined in on World IPv6 Day, with most of their services, including Search, Gmail, YouTube and more, will be available to the world over IPv6 permanently. Most users won't notice the change, but if you want to test your connection, you can visit ipv6test.google.com. It will be years before the Internet is fully transitioned to IPv6, but that's what the future holds for the Internet.

The Pirate Bay steers away from torrents, sets sail for DHT

Ah, torrents. You used to be cool before everyone dived onto you, years ago, but as they have become mainstream, the target has been made. Torrents used to not be mainstream, and thus, the websites hosting them were pretty safe. Now I hear grandmas discussing how their son/daughter/friend/grandson "downloaded X or Y movie/TV show from 'the torrents'".

 

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The Pirate Bay is one of the largest torrent-hosting sites on the Internet, and in a month from now, thepiratebay.org will remove all torrent files from its site, in favor for magnet links. This new move is what The Pirate Bay calls a "new future" in file sharing, consisting of true peer-to-peer sharing without the use of trackers.

 

TPB has already switched over to the underlying technology that runs alongside magnet links, with Distributed Hash Table (DHT) and Peer Exchange (PEX). TPB have been using magnet links with torrent files for a while now, without letting any of its users know.

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Google intro improvements to the Gmail offline Chrome app

Google first announced Gmail offline in August of last year, and when they said it was "only the beginning of our HTML5-powered offline journey", well, they were right. Google have said they've been listening to everybody's feedback and have now pushed some updates to the Chrome Web Store app.

 

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The first update is the addition of a 'settings' page. From here, you can choose how many days of mail you'd like to synchronize, 7, 14 or 31 days. This means you can sync a bunch of e-mail before you get on the plane, or a bus/train and sort through 31 days of e-mail, all while you're offline.

 

Google also baked in a few more updates to Gmail offline:

 

Improved attachments: All attachments are now downloaded and available for offline use

Keyboard shortcuts support: If you have keyboard shortcuts enabled in Gmail, your setting will transfer over to the Gmail offline app. If you're not sure what you can do with keyboard shortcuts, try pressing '?' next time you're using Gmail or Gmail offline.

Numerous performance enhancements: Messages and attachments now download at a faster rate and some bugs have been fixed.

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Wikipedia reaches $20 million in fundraising, loses the personal appeal banners

The Wikimedia Foundation has reached its goal of $20 million USD in donations for Wikipedia. The Wikimedia Foundation announced today they had reached their goal and the banners that appeared asking for your donations will be removed.

 

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A Wikipedia blog post by Jay Walsh noted that over one million donors from around the world collectively contributed toward the $20 million campaign. Walsh also stated that the 2011 total surpassed the 2008 total of a "meager" $4.5 million. Sue Gardner, Executive Director for Wikimedia Foundation, said the following in a message:

Continue reading 'Wikipedia reaches $20 million in fundraising, loses the personal appeal banners' (full post)

Apple launches website dedicated to iTunes Match, includes setup guide, walkthrough video, FAQs

Apple's cloud-based iTunes Match launched last month in the U.S. and while it has lagged behind a little, they've finally launched a website that is purely dedicated to iTunes Match. The new iTunes Match website tries to clear up most of the confusion that has risen since it was announced.

 

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Apple thoroughly explain the basics of iTunes Match, quoted below:

 

With iTunes in the Cloud, the music you buy from the iTunes Store automatically appears on all your devices.1 And for music you haven't purchased from iTunes, iTunes Match is the perfect solution. iTunes Match is built right into iTunes on your computer and the Music app on your iOS devices.2 It lets you store your entire collection in iCloud, even music you've imported from CDs or purchased somewhere other than iTunes. When it's in iCloud, it's available on all your devices. So you can enjoy all your music anywhere, anytime - on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, PC, or Apple TV.

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AdMob saw 8 billion tablet ad requests in November

Got your calculator ready for some big numbers? Google have said that in November 2011 alone, AdMob saw 8 billion ad requests coming in from tablets, which is an increase from the 1 billion in December of 2010, and an increase of an astounding 700-percent in the past twelve months.

 

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To compare these numbers, AdMob sees nearly 3 billion ad requests per day, globally. So 8 billion over a month from just tablets alone, compared to hundreds of millions of desktops, is quite the achievement. In May of this year, Google introduced new formats for tablet-based ads, which allows advertisers and publishers to serve full-screen interstitial ads built with HTML5 on smartphones and tablets.

 

And just a few weeks ago, Google launched a number of new tablet ad formats, which include ways to interact with a specific product, feature a collection of products or promote foot traffic to a specific store location. Google have also revealed that AdMob saw a 440-percent growth in traffic from tablets from November 2011 when compared to December 2010.

SBS ON DEMAND and many other applications, now available on the Xbox 360

Starting from today, SBS ON DEMAND, ninemsn video and YouTube applications are now available on the Xbox 360 through Xbox LIVE. Better yet, all of these customised apps have voice commands built-in through Kinect.

 

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These new channels will compliment the already in place tv shows available through FOXTEL on the Xbox 360 and movies and music with Zune. Worldwide, has also seen some changes, with the following now available:

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