Tag Archives: Google News

Enough With the Android Java Code Hoopla, There Is No Java Copied Code Used to Run Android

Android has used Java code, Android has infringed upon Java and Androids Dalvik virtual machine uses Java codeare claims from Oracle we have heard over the last few months. This had even led to a lawsuit against Google and put the future of Android in jeopardy for a moment.

android-logo

However, as blatant these claims are, Ed Burnette has proved them wrong. Engadget announced this first by writing,

Oracle is currently suing Google for patent and copyright infringement in Android — which isn’t a hard case to prove when you’ve got 37 Android source files marked “PROPRIETARY / CONFIDENTIAL” and “DO NOT DISTRIBUTE” by Oracle / Sun and at least six more files in Froyo and Gingerbread that appear to have been decompiled from Java 2 Standard Edition and redistributed under the Apache open source license without permission. In simple terms? Google copied Oracle’s Java code, pasted in a new license, and shipped it.

Engadget also says that Google has decompiled files from the Java 2 SE. In simpler terms, it has copied files from the J2SE bundle, but has copied files that are just not used in running the Android system!

The files found common in Android and Java are files used for unit testing. Therefore, even if those files were used at all, it was for unit testing, which is a feature, provided by the Java platform itself. Even Oracle cannot deny its usage to anyone. However, when the Android package was formed, the license of those files was modified to Apache and this today, has become an issue.

Though, technically, Google should have removed those files as it did on 14 January this year. This was the first blow to Android and thankfully, it more than survived. The year 2011 will be critical for Android with Gingerbread and Honeycomb and the effect of this setback will be minimal.

Google Nexus One And Nexus S Get An OTA Update To Fix The SMS Bug

Remember the SMS bug in the Android OS which erroneously sent your text message to the wrong contact and all the hype surrounding it? Few weeks ago, Google said that they have managed to re-produce the bug in their test lab and are trying to fix the bug. The big G promised to roll out an update to fix the bug ASAP as well.

Google_Nexus_One

Well, today Google has rolled out the Android 2.2.2 and Android 2.3.2 OTA update for the Nexus One and the Nexus S, respectively. However, the change-log of the update does not mention whether it fixes the SMS bug or not. However, we are guessing that these two updates are aimed at fixing the SMS bug only.

Nexus One owners can download and install the update manually from their handset from here. Hopefully, other manufacturers will also soon start rolling out this small but important update for their Android based handsets.

Nexus One owners must be feeling disappointed as they are still impatiently waiting for the Android 2.3 update to roll out for their handset. At the beginning of this month,   Google had promised to release the Android 2.3 Gingerbread update for the Nexus One in the coming weeks’.

Sadly, since then Google has not mentioned anything about the update. Hopefully, Google will release the Android 2.3 update for the Nexus One before the end of this month.

Google Talks About Search Quality Spam: Improved Results Underway

A few days back we told you how Google search results were being intruded by content farms and “agregators” who try to manipulate search results with black hat techniques. Recently,  there has been much speculation on the way Google search is populated with content aggregators and   scraped websites.

Earlier today, Google Engineer Matt Cutts published a blog post saying “We are listening as more algos and spam detection techniques are on our radar”.

Here is what Matt said:

We have seen a slight uptick of spam in recent months, and while we’ve already made progress, we have new efforts underway to continue to improve our search quality.

Prior to this, Matt explained that Google’s search quality is better than before in terms of relevance, freshness and comprehensiveness. Web spam in English is less than half what it was five years ago and spam in other languages is lower than English.

It’s interesting to note that Google rolled out a PR update earlier today and the blog post also discusses about a redesigned “document-level classifier” being introduced. This classifier will detect on page spammy content, junk and repetitive words that typically appear in blog  comment  forms, thus making it difficult for spam sites to rank ahead of the original source in SERP’s.

In addition, Google has also improved the way hacked sites are shown in search results. Matt says “We’ve also radically improved our ability to detect hacked sites, which were a major source of spam in 2010. And we’re evaluating multiple changes that should help drive spam levels even lower”.

The blog post didn’t gave any clue on why the scraped sites were able to manipulate search results. However, Matt makes it “crystal clear” that Google takes “action” against sites that violate their webmaster quality guidelines regardless of whether they are running Adsense ads on their sites.

Indirectly, Google clears the air that although they take away 32 % share of all the Adsense money from Publishers, they are strict to ban folks who try to degrade the overall search experience by running Adsense on scraped sites with no original content.

As webmasters, we can only hope. That’s all.

Oh and if anybody from Google is reading this, we have a suggestion. Showcase the spammers on a new “Spam bar” in the right of search results. Way better !

Eric Schmidt Steps Down As Google CEO; Larry Page New Google CEO

In what might come as a shocker of a news to many out there, Eric Schmidt has stepped down as the CEO of Google. Google co-founder Larry Page will be the new CEO of Google.

Eric Schmidt, Larry Page, Sergey Brin

During today’s earning release, Google announced that Eric Schmidt would no longer continue as the CEO of Google. This was also posted by Schmidt on the official Google Blog.

But as Google has grown, managing the business has become more complicated. So Larry, Sergey and I have been talking for a long time about how best to simplify our management structure and speed up decision making—and over the holidays we decided now was the right moment to make some changes to the way we are structured.

Schmidt wrote that this decision was taken over the holidays to speed up the decision making process in the company. The company will now have three key roles.

Larry Page will be the new product development and technology strategy lead. He will take charge of the CEO role and manage day-to-day operations from April 4.

Sergey Brin will work on strategic projects and will be more involved in working on new Google products. He will continue to remain Co-founder of Google.

Eric Schmidt will become the executive Chairman of the company and will work on Google’s deals, partnerships and customers. His main focus will be on bringing in more strategic partners and customers, like governments into the Google fold and will also be an advisor for both Larry and Sergey.

So it looks like after a reign of 10 long years, Eric Schmidt will finally hand over the operations back to one of the founders. This decision is surprising because Google has continued to do well throughout his tenure. However, a fresh mind could benefit them even more.

Are you surprised at Eric Schmidt stepping down? Do you think Larry Page will make a good CEO? Do tell me your thoughts through your comments.

Google PageRank Update For January 2011

Google has just begun rolling out the PageRank updates for January 2011. Many websites are seeing increase in their PageRank while some are seeing decreases.

Google usually rolls out toolbar PageRank updates every quarter, however, there weren’t much of these updates in 2010. You can check the PageRank of your website by using our PageRank checking tool.

Google’s PageRank signifies the rank of a website on their toolbar, however, the PageRank does not suggest that your site will show up higher in the SERP. So take it with a grain of salt. There have already been several discussions about what a PageRank is so you might want to read up those to understand how it works.

Make sure to tell us whether you saw a PageRank update or not.

Google’s JFK Inaugural Address Doodle Is Awesome

I have been fascinated time and again by which show up on Google’s home page to celebrate an event or person with historic significance.

JFK Inaugural Address Google Doodle

However, today’s to celebrate the 50th anniversary of John F Kennedy’s Inaugural Address to the nation is awesome. The speech was given by JFK on January 20, 1961 after he took the presidential oath of office. Today’s Google Doodle is made up of words and phrases which were used by JFK in his speech 50 years ago.

It looks pretty neat and is definitely artistic. Kudos to the Google Doodle team who come up with such fascinating Doodle’s. You can view this Doodle by visiting google.com.

RIM Expects to Sell 1 Million Playbooks in Q1 2011

Research in Motion has apparently ordered shipments of close to 1 million Blackberry Playbook tablets. Quanta Computer has begun production of the tablets, and RIM expects to sell them in Q1 2011.

RIM plans to launch the Playbook in March with a 3G version coming later. Honestly, 1 million Playbook sales seem a bit too ambitious now, with a flood of Android tablets coming soon.

Even Motorola expects to sell about 800,000 Xoom tablets, but that is more realistic, as Android is a much more popular OS than the QNX based OS in the Playbook. Even HP plans to launch a webOS tablet soon and Apple may launch the iPad 2 in April.

Blackberry Playbook

via Digitimes

Google makes Its First Acquisition Of 2011: eBook Technologies

Google has made its first acquisition of 2011 in the form of eBook Technologies. The search giant was on an acquisition spree last year and this year too, it is the first company to make an acquisition.

google-books

After this acquisition, now the eBook Technologies homepage says,

eBook Technologies, Inc. is excited to announce that we have been acquired by Google. Working together with Google will further our commitment to providing a first-class reading experience on emerging tablets, e-readers and other portable devices.

However, as pointed out by Jason Kincaid from Techcrunch, all links on the homepage point back to the homepage itself and the news page has some links outlining past achievements.

The company specialized in eBooks as a complete solution including a (hardware) reader, a firmware for the reader and an eBook store exclusively designed for the reader.

Even though the website is in dismay, the Google cache of the website lives on. The cache gives the impression that Google is particularly interested in the firmware of the device they were selling. The firmware has support for turning pages, advanced definition loookup, markups and proprietary encryption.

Garth Conboy, the man behind eBook Technologies and a decade old expert in this field can be seen talking about the Nook in this video.

(Image Via: Erictric)

Google Translate for Android Gets better, Now Does Live Conversation

Android apps are getting better as each day passes and the ones provided by Google is the top of the charts. Google Maps with rotate, tilt and 3D was a revolutionary concept and this time too, we have more awesomeness from Google as the Google Translate app that does live conversation.

The moment you speak in a language, Google translate listens to it and translates it in live to another language. The same is true for your friend who speaks a language you have no idea of. This new feature is available in a “Conversation Mode” that autodetects the language and does this conversion in live. This has been tested in English and Spanish currently as these are the two most popular languages used on the Internet and text translate service for these languages already exist.

The Google Blogspot has written about this service saying,

In conversation mode, simply press the microphone for your language and start speaking. Google Translate will translate your speech and read the translation out loud. Your conversation partner can then respond in their language, and you’ll hear the translation spoken back to you.

A video demo of the new Google Translate is available at this page.

Hey Google, Can We Have Some Meaningful Results? Please

You don’t use Google because it’s “Google”. You use “Google” because it offers relevant and meaningful results.

AdSense Scraper Sites Joke

Image credit

Back in the year 2000 – web search was largely dominated by short web queries and the results were very “generalized”, users had to click through multiple links until they were able to find the exact webpage they were looking for. The search volume was fairly low, hence the requirement for a polished algorithm was not laid forward.

Also Read: Hey Google, Here is How You Can Make Google News Spam Free

Then came Google and web search took a significant turn in it’s “relevancy”, “exactness” and “value”. Google changed the way   folks used to find content, people started writing blogs, created information and Google organized all the information in their “index”.

The sad part – Newton’s third law of motion holds true universally.

The reaction: Google’s way of ranking webpages was huge, so big that it gave birth to a giant search marketing industry. The welcome mat for SEO Firms was laid out, which consequently gave birth to content farms, aggregators and scraped websites. Their entire goal of producing content is from the outside in – find the phrases which are profitable, judge the competition, gain a good amount of links and make your way to the SERP’s.

In recent times, there has been much speculation on the way Google search is populated with content aggregators and scraped websites. TechCrunch, Venture Beat and other tech blogs have put down their observations earlier.

It’s not that only we are saying this. Jeff Atwood from Coding Horror recently nailed down their observations

In 2010, our mailboxes suddenly started overflowing with complaints from users complaints that they were doing perfectly reasonable Google searches, and ending up on scraper sites that mirrored Stack Overflow content with added advertisements. Even worse, in some cases, the original Stack Overflow question was nowhere to be found in the search results!

Why Do Content Aggregators Beat The Source In Search Results ?

Let’s take a look on the factors that influence the ranking of a webpage in search results.

Google says that there are more than 200 signals but practice shows that the most important factors which determine whether you page is going to rank well or not are:

1. The quality of the content
2. Number and authority of the links to your content.
3. The Title Of the page.

Let’s say you wrote an informative article on “iPhone cases” and published it on your blog. Since “iPhone cases” is a profitable phrase, this will alert the content aggregators, link farms and scraper sites running AdSense ads. These guys have set up Google Alerts and other ways to get instant notifications whenever a phrase they are targeting, gets found by Google.

They come to your blog, copy an excerpt from your article, publish a new post on their “Aggregation channels” with a link back to your post.

You think it’s cool? ” “Hey Mike, I just got a backlink from xyz.com they have 60,000 RSS readers. I am famous !”

Yes, a lot of people will read your thought but not on your blog. The majority will read it on the “Aggregation channel”.

The Result

Since a large portion of the blogosphere is paying attention to that Aggregation channel, who do you think is going to attract more links?

Social Media Influence Aggregators

As soon as the scraped post hits an “Aggregation channel”, a huge number of blogs will start linking to them (not you). They have an enormous amount of social media subscribers, Twitter followers, newsletter readers and getting 6 dozen backlinks to their own article is child’s play.

Yes, you have written that 900 word article but that doesn’t qualify your post to be linked from other sites. Social media influences search rankings and these content aggregators use huge social media influence to dominate SERP’s.

Conrad Sam from Search Engine Land performed an internal study on profitable keywords, in order to find out which search engine (Google or Bing) returns relevant results. The SEL team followed this convention:

  • 5 points were awarded for a good quality result ranking first, 3 for second and 1 for third.
  • 2 bonus points were added for top 3 results being on a highly authoritative site.
  • 5 points were subtracted if the entire first page didn’t contain any good results.

Search Engine Ranking Authority
It’s no wonder that Google is losing it’s ground on relevancy and exactness. Richard MacManus from Read Write Web puts an interesting comment on why blogs and search engines need to embrace a “change”

I can only hope that Google and other search engines find better ways to surface quality content, for its own sake as well as ours. Because right now Google is being infiltrated on a vast scale by content farms.

That pretty much sums it up. Google has been promoting leechers more than the actual publishers and we ourselves have been victim of this problem. You can read more about it on this post.

What is your opinion of the quality of search results in Google? Are you happy with them? Do you think that they need to improve? Are you a victim of RSS scrapers? Don’t forget to tell me your thoughts through your comments.