Entries Tagged 'Google' ↓
January 9th, 2009 | Google • Media • Newspapers • Wired
This morning Wired’s Epicenter blog is running an interesting piece: Five Things Google Could Do For Newspapers. There’s some pretty interesting stuff in there, but my fear is that all of the suggestions are merely handwaving unless papers deal with the real problem – they don’t actually print enough real news. Newspapers made bets in the 90s and into the 00s that served (essentially) to divest themselves of the business of publishing the news, in many cases preferring wire services for the majority of news content. What (many) newspapers have become are reprinters of wire copy padded by a myriad of opinion, editorial, and marginally ethical fluff “journalism”.
What Google should do is to set up a fund to help struggling newspapers re-staff their news divisions and a deeply discounted consulting wing to help owners – who have made the bad decisions that got us where we are today – understand that their only real commercial value springs from factual reporting.
March 1st, 2008 | Design • Google • Strategy • Usability
Avenue A | Razorfish’s Garrick Schmitt has written a great post in the Digital Design Blog that riffs on information from their Digital Outlook report: Does the Home Page Still Matter?: Why Distribution Trumps Destination Online. Most of the web folks that I know have been working on this basis for some time now, but it remains important to underline that the old “get people in through the homepage” model is broken (and likely always was, it was just harder to figure out before).
Trying to force people into a specific usage pattern is a recipe for failure – trumped only by the mistake of trying to predict where users will come from in the first place. What does this mean in practice? Many things (and the conclusions in the post are right on), but two immediate things spring to mind:
- Deep links have to provide context within the URL itself (i.e., be readable)
- Don’t hide content in non-machine-readable formats that people can’t link to directly (and that Google can’t grok)
March 1st, 2008 | Craptastic • Google • Montreal • Search
Just now I was trying to find a printing company near my house whose name I didn’t remember. So I did a search with the information I had and got a Pages Jaunes (i.e., Yellow Pages in French) listing: impression Montreal. It’s pretty obvious that these people are fighting like mad against the very nature of the web. First problem: though it was the only listing that in any way matched my search, what came up in Google was a terrible listing page, not their direct company page. So I searched the page for the street and finally found the listing and clicked through to it. And then it got worse.
Unfortunately it got even worse once I had the name of the company and did another search in Google. The site only came up in the first page of listings when I searched for “Ipso-Facto Impression Numerique” rather than just the company name – and then when I finally got through to the link I found out why – their site is a craptastic flash-based site with background music and everything. Eek.
February 1st, 2008 | Business • Google • Microsoft • Software • Yahoo
The big news this morning is that Microsoft has offered $44.6B to buy Yahoo, the figure representing a 62% premium on the share price at yesterday’s market close. It’s very unclear at this point what will come of this, but as a user I find it hard to see how such a tie-up could be beneficial to me. From my perspective, although MS has done some interesting things on the net, none of their initiatives have been focused on delivering the best quality of user experience or even innovation – their plays have seemed to by cynically based on scaling up so-so experiences and hoping that the brute force of that scale can make them important. What we learn from Google, however, is that though scale is important, it is deeply related to quality and innovation in a way that consumer software never was.
Update: Techcrunch has looked at some of the numbers.
January 8th, 2008 | Data Portability • Facebook • Google • Plaxo • Social Networks • TechCrunch
More from TechCrunch today as they have posted that Facebook, Google and Plaxo have joined the DataPortability Workgroup. Not quite sure what impact this will have, but it’s definitely worth following.
November 30th, 2007 | Google • Mobile • TechCrunch • US • Wireless
A couple of days ago we had big news about Canadian wireless spectrum – today, the news is from South of the border in the US. Google has long been rumoured to have been preparing to enter the auction, and today we learn that Google [has confirmed their] Spectrum Bid. The rumour mill will now turn to wild speculation about Google’s intentions for wireless spectrum should they succeed in winning at auction.