We realize not everyone uses Firefox to browse the Web, but for those who do, there's a really great extension that's been getting a lot of buzz lately. It's called Customize Google and it does just that. You can customize every service Google offers, from basic tasks such as automatically redirecting to the secure versions of Gmail, Google Reader, and Google Docs and Spreadsheets, to actually adding links to other search services such as MSN, Yahoo, and Ask.com. Social bookmarking nuts can also add links to services such as Reddit, Digg, and Del.icio.us, right … Read more
When looking for a new spot to eat or shop, I tend to turn to Yelp (controversy aside) more than to other business rating sites. But I could be missing crucial comments made by someone outside of Yelp.
Happily, I just checked out a cool service that displays ratings from around the Web at a single glance. The browser add-on Palore aggregates business reviews from a variety of Web sites and displays them next to Google and Yahoo's local search results in Firefox and Internet Explorer.
Currently Palore has data for some 2.4 million businesses in big cities … Read more
If more than one-fifth of Web startups are social networking sites, as the Webware 100 indicates, then a service pooling together your various online identities should be pretty handy, just like Trillian is for instant messaging. 8hands is one of the latest services designed to coordinate social networking contacts (see YoName too). It grabs your buddies from Flickr, Blogger, Twitter, TypePad, YouTube, MySpace, WordPress, and LiveJournal and displays them in a floating, IM-sized window. This free, 8.5MB alpha app took about five minutes to download on Windows XP.
8hands is supposed to rank your pals according to how often … Read more
Here's a way to maybe keep your audience engaged with your Web site even when they're not on it: offer them a branded browser toolbar. Conduit's newish Community Toolbar feature makes it easy to build a toolbar (for free) that you can offer to your site visitors (also for free).
When I heard about this I thought, Great, just what we need: more toolbar clutter. Also, we have experience at CNET with toolbar downloads. For us, they weren't worth the development time. Conduit is a little different, though. Regarding clutter, you're only supposed to get … Read more
Is googling your best friend from preschool going nowhere? If you suspect that he might be lurking on a social-networking site, you can try to find him with YoName, a people-search engine that looks across MySpace, LinkedIn, Digg, Facebook, Friendster, Match, and Xanga.
There are other social-site crawlers, such as Upscoop beta, which shows who in your Yahoo, Hotmail, Gmail, or AOL address book uses MySpace, LinkedIn, or other sites. There's a lot of buzz already around the unreleased Spock people finder. Loopster and ProfileLinker beta sift through various networks and let you see when friends update their pages. … Read more
First it was the Google Toolbar, then it was an integrated search box in the corner of my browser. It's no secret Google's been slowly attempting to take control of our computers for years. The desktop search is a testament to that. What's really creepy is the new Web History tracking service Google quietly rolled out last week. This new service doesn't go after items on your computer, rather what you're looking at online.
Google Web History archives everything you've searched for (while signed in to your Google account), and gives you a bookmarklet to bookmark sites you like. The whole idea is to make the browsing experience something you can search through and access from any computer, anywhere. Search history has items listed by time of search, with the most recent ones on a front page.
Searches are broken down by Google category like Web, Images, Maps, and (the now misnamed) Froogle. Users can also see how many searches they've done by month, day, and hour. Drilling down deeper, you can also go in and click on the number of searches and see the top sites and results. It's a total analytic overload.
The real creepy part in all this is the integration you get if you have the Google Toolbar installed on your browser. This will track every single site you're visiting, and apply the same aforementioned analytics so you can keep track of which sites or services you're using the most. Sure, we've had browsing history for years, but it's always been localized. It's a little alarming to see it online, regardless of the fact it can't be shared with others.
The good news is that users can opt-out of Google's Web History program, along with the capability to delete any item that's been archived. The bad news is that if you have a Google account, all your search activity has been tracked since last week.
For more shots of the service, keep reading.… Read more
Google has renamed its "Search History" service "Web History" and broadened its coverage. Previously, the service would record your Google searches. Now, Web History can associate the web pages you visit with your Google Account. Web History keeps a list of the times and links to the web pages viewed and searches conducted. Users have to be signed in to their Google account and need to have the Google Toolbar installed with PageRank enabled.
The average click fraud rate--which represents the number of clicks on online pay-per-click ads that are not legitimate--is rising, according to a report from search engine marketing firm Click Forensics.
The average rose for the second quarter in a row, to 21.9 percent for search engine content networks like publisher networks that host ads served by Google and Yahoo, according to the Click Fraud Index. That was up from 19.2 percent for the previous quarter. The average for the overall industry was 14.8 percent for the first quarter, up from 14.2 percent in the previous quarter … Read more
Tired of searching YouTube for clips of TV shows, only to find it barren of your favorite show? Well, if it's a Viacom program you're out of luck anyway, but for most everything else, search tool maker Blinkx rolled out a new service yesterday called Blinkx Remote, a search engine for full-length TV shows. Blinkx sorts through clips and full-length programs, providing direct links to off-site sources where you can watch the entire episode.
Video search site blinkx is launching a new tool on Wednesday called blinkx Remote that will allow people to easily find full-length TV shows by season and episode. People can enter a search for a favorite TV show at www.blinkx.com, like Curb Your Enthusiasm or Lost, and the site will recognize the title and offer up links to sites where the show can be watched or downloaded. The system uses information from other online sources, like Wikipedia and IMDB.com, to provide the most accurate results and prioritizes the full-length versions over short clips.
"It's a … Read more