Google

Wed
13
Oct
John Lister's picture

Google to Test How Search Results are Displayed

Google is testing two key changes to it search tools. The idea is to make both searching and Search History tools more useful. The first change is to searches themselves. At the moment, users see a search results page and choose one to click on and ... visit the page in question. If they don't find the page useful, they'll click the back button and look for another possibility in the results list. That can be a little fiddly, particularly on some mobile devices where the back option isn't always easy to use. It also makes it even more annoying when a website (against all good design practices) ... (view more)

Fri
02
Jul
John Lister's picture

Google To Warn Of Unreliable Results

Google is to warn users when results for a search might not provide reliable information. It's designed mainly for breaking news stories. The warning will be an update feature for the existing "About this result" tool that Google has been testing ... publicly since February. The tool means results on mobile devices now have a menu option that brings up a pop-window that describes the source, with the description taken from Wikipedia. The idea is to give users a quick insight into sources they don't recognize and help them decide how authoritative or otherwise they may be. Warning Message Issued ... (view more)

Wed
02
Jun
John Lister's picture

Google Accused of Hiding Tracking Settings

Internal Google documents suggest the company intentionally made it harder for users to stop it accessing their location data. The documents have become public through a lawsuit that claims Google broke data consent rules. The state of Arizona is ... suing over the way Google handles location tracking. Officials say that even when users switched off location tracking for specific apps, Google continued tracking in the background. It only stopped when users switched off a tracking setting for the entire Android system. That's led to the lawsuit, based on the logic that Google made profits from ... (view more)

Thu
20
May
John Lister's picture

Google Maps Adds Sidewalk Info

Google is making five tweaks to its Map services. It says the differences will make it safer and more useful. The most spectacular, if arguably gimmicky, change is to Live View. That's an augmented reality feature which lets users hold up their ... phone and see the view from their camera with overlaid information from the Maps app. It's meant for pedestrians (and preferably ones standing still) and will now include information such as details about shops and restaurants in view. It will also show the direction of chosen landmarks and show virtual street signs for navigating confusing ... (view more)

Thu
06
May
John Lister's picture

Google Criticized Over Misleading Gov't Ads

Google has been accused of failing to do enough to tackle rip-off ads. The issue involves advertisers who mislead customers into paying for government services that should be free of charge. The accusation comes from the BBC News site and involves a ... series of services such as applying for driving or travel permits. While the official costs vary from country to country, such services often have little or no cost from a government agency. Third party sellers run websites that are vague about their status and then charge users inflated fees to apply on their behalf. Such sites are often legal as ... (view more)

Thu
25
Mar
John Lister's picture

YouTube to Produce Ads based on Image Recognition

YouTube is to automatically detect items in videos and then advertise them for sale. It will also automatically link to other videos covering the same item. The system, titled "Products in this Video", has been in testing as a "small experiment" ... since April last year. YouTube confirmed this week that it is expanding the test so that more people see it. For now it remains a US-only feature. (Source: 9to5google.com ) It works by recognizing specific items in the video. YouTube hasn't explained exactly how this works, but it may involve a combination of on-screen graphics in the video, ... (view more)

Tue
09
Mar
John Lister's picture

Google Maps May Have Ads

Google Maps could have ads displayed in locations on the map itself. A newly-awarded patent explains how Google could adjust the costs to advertisers based on factors such as the user's location. The photographs in the patent application suggest the ... feature would most likely be added to the standard diagram view in Google Maps, rather than either the aerial image view or the Street View photographs. The system would designate specific areas on the map such as a building and treat them as spaces where an ad could appear. How many ads would appear on the screen would depend on how closely the ... (view more)

Wed
27
Jan
John Lister's picture

Google Says Cookie-Free Advertising Works

Google believes it's found a way to replace privacy-breaching cookies while still letting advertisers find success. It's testing a way to effectively combine data from thousands of users to target ads. Cookies fall into two main types: first and ... third party. First-party cookies are generally uncontroversial as they simply identify a user on a website, including any previous activity such as website preferences. For example, a premium website could let somebody log in to an account and then use cookies so they don't have to log in again for a set period such as a week. Third-party cookies are ... (view more)

Tue
05
Jan
John Lister's picture

Chrome Security Software Bug Fixed

Chrome and Edge are to get a fix for a problem with saving bookmarks and other files. The glitch is the result of an incompatibility with some anti-virus software. The problem involved security tools which were set to scan files on a computer in ... real-time. Often this involves "freezing" a file immediately as it's written to disk so the security software can check for threats and neutralize them before they have an effect. Unfortunately the way this works means it didn't always go smoothly with Chrome, resulting in the browser "freezing", then simply giving up on saving the file. This caused ... (view more)

Thu
17
Dec
John Lister's picture

Turning Old Laptops Into Chromebook May Get Easier

Google has bought a company that helps people turn old laptops into Chromebooks. It will turn "CloudReady" into an official way to use the Chrome operating system. Chromebooks run on ChromeOS, a system that's based largely around using the Chrome ... browser to access online tools and applications. It's aimed particularly at people who mainly use a computer for web browsing, light document editing, and watching streaming video. One of the big advantages is that much of the processing is done remotely rather than on the computer itself. That means a Chromebook can run on cheaper low-spec ... (view more)

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