- Google+ Is Going to Mess Up The Internet (ReadWriteWeb) — Google thought I would prefer to click through Google+ to find my article than to go straight to it. Severe rip of the negative effects G+ has on the search experience. (via Hacker News)
- Behind the Scenes of a C64 Demo (Chaos Communications Congress) — the tricks they use when fitting all that goodness into a 64K machine. Video and slides. (via Reddit Programming)
- Gentleman Hacker’s 1903 Lulz (New Scientist) — how Marconi’s telegraph demo was haxx0red. (via Imran Ali)
- Results of a QR Trial (Brooklyn Museum) — At first glance this looks like a win, right? Well, that’s true until you compare pre and post QR code use. These numbers are a little tricky for various reasons, but when looking at Gallery Tag as an example we saw a five-fold drop in use .and five-fold is a very conservative extrapolation from the stats. Cold water in the face to wake you up from those dreams of 2d-barcode glory.
You might feel fine.
Google+ Ruining Search, C64 Demos, Telegraph Hacks, and QR Meh
Governments continue to eye Google, Bing's share grows, Yahoo BOSS relaunches
In the latest Search Notes: Courts continue their interest in Google while Bing edges its way up in market share. Plus: Yahoo BOSS relaunches.
"Reputation management" does not excuse black hat SEO tactics.
Dubious SEO techniques may obscure the bits of your past you want to keep under wraps, but the only real solution is to do something computers can't: Get over it and let the past go.
Stephan Spencer on how autonomous intelligence and language processing will transform search.
Stephan Spencer, co-author of "The Art of SEO," says searching the Internet of the future will be like talking to a human being.
BBC Pares Web, Data Interaction Design, Long-Form Commerce, and Dangers of Free Themes
- BBC Web Cuts Show Wider Disconnect (The Guardian) — I forget that most people still think of the web as a secondary add-on to the traditional way of doing things rather than as the new way. Interesting article which brings home the point in the context of the BBC, but you can tell the same story in almost any business.
- 40p Off a Latte (Chris Heathcote) — One of the bits I enjoyed the most was unpacking the old ubiquitous computing cliche of your phone vibrating with a coupon off a latte when walking past a Starbucks. This whole presentation is brilliant. I’m still zinging off how data can displace actions in time and space: what you buy today on Amazon will trigger a recommendation later for someone else.
- Long-Form Reporting Finds Commercial Hope in E-Books — ProPublica and New York Times have launched long-form reporting in Kindle Singles, Amazon’s format for 5k-30k word pieces. On Thursday, he told me his job involved asking the question, “How do you monetize the content when it is not news anymore?” Repackaging and updating the paper’s coverage of specific topics is a common answer.
- Why You Should Never Search for Free WordPress Themes in Google or Anywhere Else — short answer: free themes are full of SEO rubbish or worse. Every hit on your site boosts someone else’s penis pills site, and runs the risk that search engines will decide your site is itself spam.
3 book SEO tips and why metadata and book covers matter to Google.
Matthew Gray, lead software engineer of Google Books Search Quality, discusses general signals Google uses to rank and display books. Plus: Three best practices for getting Google's attention.
Power lies with those who can decipher attention algorithms.
As our social, economic and political lives are increasingly mediated through a few consolidated technologies such as Facebook and Google, software exerts a profound influence on the way we engage with one another.
London Data, SEO Deathspiral, Subversion Search, Entity Extraction APIs
- London Datastore to Launch — the Mayor of London will launch a site full of London data. (via Ed Dumbill)
- Google Destroyed the Web — It’s hard to disagree with the basic contention that SEO aimed at Google’s rankings has fucked the web. It’s a vicious circle, too: the more fake content sites are created to game Google, the harder it will be for any new web search startup to filter that effluent and deliver meaningful results in competition to Google. This is a grim feedback loop.
- ReposSearch — search Subversion repositories.
- Survey of Entity Extraction APIs — he describes the qualititative differences in the APIs and their responses, finding that Evri and OpenAlchemy had the best for his needs.
Minds for Sale, Heat Death of the Web, Handheld Wireless Magazines, Joking Computers
- Jonathan Zittrain on “Minds for Sale” — video of a presentation he gave at the Computer History Museum about crowdsourcing. In the words of one attendee, Zittrain focuses on the potential alienation and opportunities for abuse that can arise with the growth of distributed online production. He also contemplates the thin line that separates exploitation from volunteering in the context of online communities and collaboration. Video embedded below.
- Anatomy of a Bad Search Result — Physicists tell us that the 2nd law of Thermodynamics predicts that eventually everything in the universe will be the same temperature, the way a hot bath in a cold room ends up being a lukewarm bath in a lukewarm room. The web is entering its own heat death as SEO scum build fake sites with stolen content from elsewhere on the web. If this continues, we won’t be able to find good content for all the bullshit. The key is to have enough dishwaster-related text to look like it’s a blog about dishwashers, while also having enough text diversity to avoid being detected by Google as duplicative or automatically generated content. So who created this fake blog? It could have been Consumersearch, or a “black hat” SEO consultant, or someone in an affiliate program that Consumersearch doesn’t even know. I’m not trying to imply that Consumersearch did anything wrong. The problem is systematic. When you have a multibillion dollar economy built around keywords and links, the ultimate “products” optimize for just that: keywords and links. The incentive to create quality content diminishes.
- Magplus — gorgeous prototyping for how magazines might work on new handheld devices.
- Glasgow’s Joking Computer — The Glasgow Science Centre in Scotland is exhibiting a computer that makes up jokes using its database of simple language rules and a large vocabulary. It’s doing better than most 8 year old children. In fact, if we were perfectly honest, most adults can’t pun to save themselves. Q: What do you call a shout with a window? A: A computer scream. (via Physorg News)