Fantastic Google TV Advertisement

I use Bing (mostly) nowadays, but I couldn’t help but give a little ‘awww’ to Google’s Super Bowl commercial.

Far more effective than any of the Bing commercials I’ve seen for sure.

Searching the Internet with Blinders On

Google commands slightly more than 60% of the search engine market in the United States, but have you ever really thought about why you use it as opposed to Yahoo, or Microsoft, or AOL, or a multitude of other choices? Do you find the search results ‘better’? Have you experienced this for yourself or do you simply use it because that’s what others say?

I think I’ve accepted Google as my default search engine a bit too readily. I haven’t performed any testing of search results between the major search engines. Ever since picking up Google about 5 years ago, I haven’t even bothered trying anything else. When I started using Google, it certainly provided better search results than competitors, but since then, they’ve all made significant improvements to their algorithms. Now, 5 years later, I still harbor that same mentality: Google produces more pertinent search results, when it may not at all.

Today, due to a weird technological occurrence, I was unable to access any of the Google sites, and was forced to search the internet using Live Search and Yahoo. To Google’s credit, using a non-Google search engine actually made me feel  uncomfortable. That’s as deep a psychological attachment as I’ve ever seen. However, more importantly, I realized that I’ve been browsing the internet with blinders on. There’s no reason, aside from comfort, that I’ve been using Google exclusively. From this point on, I will make a conscious attempt to perform the same searches in Google, Live, and Yahoo. Hopefully by doing this for a week or two, I’ll get a better feel for the search result quality of each engine.

Don’t get me wrong, I have no problems with using Google, and if through my test Google’s search results prove superior, I will gladly use it. I just don’t want go on searching the internet in ignorance. Anyone care to join me and share their findings?

WordPress 2.2 and a Revamped Google?

WordPress 2.2 was recently launched with some decent improvements, although the touted tagging feature is not among them. Not a big deal – people who really want tagging are probably using a plugin for it (UTW anyone?) and there’s talk that they’ll make the tagging feature play nice with UTW when it does come along. I don’t mind waiting a little while for that. I’d rather wait and have it work properly, than have it now and break all my tagging.

Aaron Brazell posted his habitual 10 Things You Should Know About WordPress 2.x for version 2.2. Among the features I’m more interested in are the native widgets (guess I’m going to have to go update some themes…), the plugin sandbox and the preview link (as opposed to the iframe it currently resides in). I’ll be taking some time this long weekend to upgrade the backend here. Speaking of which, I’ll probably (finally) get around to resurrecting the development blog as well. I see people going there for the theme demos and getting shafted – sorry about that.

Did Google redesign their homepage a bit recently? I normally frequent the Google Canada page but today I inadvertently typed in google.com instead and was greeted by a different layout than I’m used to (not that it took any length of time to figure out how to use 😛 ). Is this old news?

Google

Speaking of Google, they announced they’ve redesigned Analytics as well, hopefully to make it more useful than it is in its current state, at least for me. My account hasn’t been upgraded yet.

Morning Tech Reading Mar 30

Lenovo, a Chinese company purchased the desktop and laptop business from IBM quite some time ago. The idea was to enter the worldwide market with a strong brand quickly. They did so for $1.25B. Fast forward to the present. The US government wants to purchase about 16,000 Lenovo computers. Okay, a big order, but what’s the big deal? Well, recently the U.S.-China Economic Security Review Commission has requested that Lenovo be probed into concerns about placing spy equipments into those computers. After all, the big red machine (no, not Russia anymore) is out to get the Americans.

Now, the United States appears to pride itself on competition, the free market, and capitalism. Yet when the government gets involved, it seems like all this gets thrown out the window instantly, without second thought. The Dubai ports deal was just another example of America’s recent barrier against what they apparently stand for. Read it and decide for yourself.

The Other Side of the Lenovo Spy Probe

Speaking of politics in tech business, this one comes from the corporate politics side. ATI Technologies uses ULi chipsets for its peripherals chip (South Bridge which provides things such as SATA, USB, etc). NVidia recently purchased ULi and is announcing that they will stop production of the chipsets ATI has been using. Of course, it would be awfully weird for nVidia to continue producing chipsets for a competitor, but nonetheless, it really puts the pressure on ATI to produce a good south bridge of their own, and soon.

Nvidia Accused of Pressuring ATI’s Chipset Business

On that note, ATI annouced its earnings for its second quarter. They came in quite a bit above analyst estimates, but net income dropped around 40% from the same time last year. Sales of lower margin chipsets pushed down those earnings despite a rise in overall revenue to $672.4 million. Stock’s up strongly in pre-market trading.

ATI Tech 2Q Profit Falls 40%

One stock that definitely isn’t up, but is falling in pre-market is Google. With recent worries about growth rates and earnings-per-share, Google’s stock probably didn’t need the announcement that they would be issuing another 5.3 million shares of stock. This only serves to dilute the stock, infusing more equity into the market, which in turn causes everyone else’s stock to be worth slightly less, assuming earnings and such remain the same. It’ll be interesting to see if Google can still hit its earnings estimates even with this sale to the market (worth around $2.1 billion!). The stock’s down around $10 pre-market.

Google Plans to Sell Another 5.3M Shares

[tags]Lenovo, US Government, nVidia, ATI, Google, business[/tags]