Posts Tagged ‘Google’
An impressive inventory of the Googleplex by Arthur Weiss, speaker at the next ILI 2012…
“Internet searching and Google have become almost synonymous. Google, however, has moved far beyond basic search since its 1998 founding. Google’s mission statement says that it aims to organise the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. In an effort to fulfil this ambition, Google offers a lot more than straightforward search. Google+ is the social media tool of choice for people whose lives circle around Google. Gmail now has over 425 million accounts, Google’s Chrome is one of the top three browsers (alongside Internet Explorer and Firefox) and there are more mobile phones running Android than Apple’s iPhone iOS. ”
Read the full article at:
Weiss, Arthur. The unknown Google. Information Today Europe, 28th of september 2012. Available from:
According Medical News Today, a new study, published recently in the Journal of Consumer Research, that propose using the internet to self-diagnose can be unwise because we tend to focus on symptoms rather than the risk of having the illness.
For their study, the researchers looked at two pieces of information that influence people’s decision as to whether they have a disease or not: the base rate (the rate of the disease in the general population), and the case information (eg the description of the symptoms).
They had a theory that how much reliance a person places on base rate and case information depends on the “psychological distance” to them of the person who is ill (self being the closest of all, strangers being very distant).
Their theory was that when assessing themselves (psychologically very close), people would place more importance on case information, and the influence of base rate would be weak. But when assessing others, especially strangers, then the influence of symptoms would be weak and base rate would be strong. (…)
The researchers said this study and others like it are important because, if consumers are more likely to misdiagnose themselves, then this could lead to them taking up treatments and buying drugs that are not appropriate, which has a wider impact on public health.
The easiest answer, they conclude is to get rid of the bias by seeing a real doctor instead of “Dr Google”.
Real doctors will take the prevalence of the disease into account, because they are viewing the patient from a distance, they say.
Paddock, Catharine. Dr Google And The Unwise Practice Of Self-Diagnosis. Medical News Today, 23 Jul 2012. Available from: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/248145.php
DO NOT TRACK in IE10 : the end of Web 2.0 business model ?
When the Do Not Track feature of a browser is turned on, a user’s surfing habits and visits can’t be tracked across Web sites, making it more difficult for Web sites, advertisers, and marketers to create personal profiles of people and target advertising at them. Do Not Track is supported by privacy groups.
“Privacy advocates cheered when Microsoft announced that it will turn on the “Do Not Track” privacy setting in Internet Explorer 10 by default when it ships with Windows 8. It was clearly a strike for privacy” but also a direct assault on the “free” 2.0 business model, especially the Google one.
“The debate highlights the difficulty of disabling the online tracking powers much of the $30 billion online advertising industry. The idea of a “do not track” system was proposed in 2010 by the Federal Trade Commission in its report on online privacy.”
Don’t expect Microsoft’s decision to change things much for now, but in the long term, it could make a dramatic difference… In the long run, though, it’s going to be hard for competing browsers not to turn on Do Not Track by default. People are increasingly concerned about privacy, and there will be tremendous pressure for browser makers to follow Microsoft’s lead. Whether part of Microsoft’s motivation was to harm Google is in a way beside the point. Microsoft did the right thing, and other browser makers should follow suit.
Angwin, Julia. Microsoft’s “Do Not Track” Move Angers Advertising Industry. The Wall Street Journal, May 31, 2012. Available from: http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2012/05/31/microsofts-do-not-track-move-angers-advertising-industry/ [Accessed 7th of June 2012]
Gralla, Preston. Do Not Track in Internet Explorer 10: A boon for privacy or a strike against Google?, Computer World, June 4, 2012. Available from: http://blogs.computerworld.com/20263/do_not_track_in_internet_explorer_10_a_boon_for_privacy_or_a_strike_against_google [Accessed 7th of June 2012]
A few words on the soft revolution that might happen on the search giant…
The Google blog announces, at last, the release of some developments (known as Google Graph) that were studied by the R&D of Mountain View for years.
“The Knowledge Graph enables you to search for things, people or places that Google knows about—landmarks, celebrities, cities, sports teams, buildings, geographical features, movies, celestial objects, works of art and more—and instantly get information that’s relevant to your query. This is a critical first step towards building the next generation of search, which taps into the collective intelligence of the web and understands the world a bit more like people do. (…)
1. Find the right thing
Language can be ambiguous—do you mean Taj Mahal the monument, or Taj Mahal the musician? Now Google understands the difference, and can narrow your search results just to the one you mean—just click on one of the links to see that particular slice of results:
2. Get the best summary
With the Knowledge Graph, Google can better understand your query, so we can summarize relevant content around that topic, including key facts you’re likely to need for that particular thing. For example, if you’re looking for Marie Curie, you’ll see when she was born and died, but you’ll also get details on her education and scientific discoveries:
3. Go deeper and broader
Finally, the part that’s the most fun of all—the Knowledge Graph can help you make some unexpected discoveries. You might learn a new fact or new connection that prompts a whole new line of inquiry.
We’ve always believed that the perfect search engine should understand exactly what you mean and give you back exactly what you want. And we can now sometimes help answer your next question before you’ve asked it, because the facts we show are informed by what other people have searched for.
We’ve begun to gradually roll out this view of the Knowledge Graph to U.S. English users. It’s also going to be available on smartphones and tablets…
Singhal, Amit. Introducing the Knowledge Graph: things, not strings. Google Blog, 16th of May 2012. Available from: http://googleblog.blogspot.fr/2012/05/introducing-knowledge-graph-things-not.html [Accessed 30th of May 2012]
If you’re not paying the for it, YOU are the product…
A ‘more or less” funny experience from a geek.
“I am a big fan of cloud services. I’ve been migrating more and more of my local services to the cloud. (…)
I also like moving to the cloud because I tend to access my information from a lot of different locations and computers. I work in my main office, my den, my living room, on my tablet, on my laptop, in the studio, in the garage, and so forth. Keeping all my data synchronized on all those machines gets old after a while. (…)
But cloud services have their failings, as well. And I’m not talking about the usual crashes and cyberattacks.
No, sometimes the service just goes away.
Google users are familiar with the phenomenon. Loyal users of Google Health were disappointed last November when the service was shut down. Del.icio.us users almost lost their minds when it appeared the service was being shuttered by Yahoo, only to have it bought up at the last minute. (…)
And then the author tells how his wife has been disappointed recently loosing a favorite list management software…
as a conclusion,
Does that mean I’m going to stop using cloud services? Heck no. But I do intend to at least check into the business model of the services I’m using. If it looks like there’s no way it’ll make any money and be a cost drain, I probably will do my best to, at the very least, keep backups, reports, or dumps of any of the data I entrust to the cloud provider.
The silver lining in this tale? Forewarned is forearmed. Now you know you need to be sure you can get your data out before the cloud services dissipate.”
Gewirtz, David. The curse of free cloud services: a cautionary tale. ZD Net, May 24, 2012. Available from: http://www.zdnet.com/blog/diy-it/the-curse-of-free-cloud-services-a-cautionary-tale/590?tag=nl.e539 [Accessed 24th of May 2012]