Just 12 hours after this blog highlighted the privacy problems associated with the White House's use of embedded YouTube videos, the Obama team rushed to deploy a technical fix that significantly protects the privacy of many (but not all) of the site's visitors.
Since its launch three days ago, President Obama's White House Web site has included several embedded YouTube videos. While this certainly demonstrates that the 44th president is Web 2.0 savvy, the decision to embed YouTube videos has also enabled the Google-owned video-sharing site to sneakily collect data on the millions of people who … Read more
Update at 7:45 a.m. PST January 23: Jon Williams' title has been clarified.
Google's desktop team has put together a short list of the reasons that Google open-sources software. The reasons may surprise you:Source code can be a valuable learning tool. The gadgets not only show you how to develop Desktop gadgets (and) integrate with Google APIs, but also provide other tidbits of knowledge such as how to calculate phases of the moon or StarDates. The images and graphics are also open-sourced....We hope people can take advantage of our graphic designers' talents. We get warm … Read more
Slate's Farhad Manjoo offers an interesting suggestion for Microsoft: forget Yahoo, buy Palm.
What's most puzzling about the possibility of renewed merger talks [between Microsoft and Yahoo] is that in betting on Yahoo, Microsoft would be jumping deeper into a volatile business that is outside its area of expertise. Microsoft really has no business being in the business of advertising. It is a software company, and software remains an astonishingly lucrative market. So why does it want to sell ads?...
Buying Yahoo would solve none of Microsoft's software woes--and could likely make them worse if Ballmer spends … Read more
Could the odd confluence of a US Airways jet crash-landing in the Hudson River and Barack Obama's presidential inauguration finally push Twitter over the top and into the broad mainstream consciousness?
That could be the case, according to statistics released Tuesday by Hitwise, an Internet analysis firm.
Hitwise reported that as of Tuesday, Twitter, the popular microblogging service, had for the first time surpassed the market share of visits of the hit content aggregation site, Digg.
According to Hitwise, Twitter now stands at number 84 in its Computers and Internet category, one space up the chart from Digg.
A … Read more
Today we have a new president to lead a new American path through what will be a tumultuous time. But President Obama won't be able to do it alone. He and his administration need to work together, and communicate with one another and the country, to ensure everything is running well.
That's why I've compiled a "cheat sheet" for the Obama administration, listing five services it should use in the White House. Sadly, it probably won't. Record-keeping laws and security concerns will ensure that none of my suggestions take effect.
AIM for White House … Read more
TechCrunch has compiled a list of ex-Googlers' complaints (and sometimes praise) against the company. Considering the source, it's perhaps not surprising that not every (ex) Google employee loves her alma mater, but the criticism does suggest that working at Google is not necessarily like working for the Magic Kingdom.
On the hiring process:
Google actually celebrates its hiring process, as if its ruthless inefficiency and interminable duration were a sure proof of thoroughness, a badge of honor. Perhaps it is thorough. But I would be willing to wager that Microsoft's hiring process, which takes a fraction of the … Read more
Why does Google's spate of disclosures in the last 24 hours constitute a positive development? Now we get to see what Google is really made of. You don't earn your corporate chops in a boom. Let's face it. When the profits are flowing, Google could burp, and people would fawn over it. A stock price north … Read more