Scribble Away on Google

Article first published as Scribble Away on Google on Technorati.

Scribble your Search on Google
Scribble your Search on Google

Lately, there are more practical ways for you to input information on your smaller screens, especially when it comes to Google products. Not only has  for Android been recently released, but now you can scribble on your touchscreen for whatever it is you’re looking for on the Google Search Engine.

Google has now enabled a small button on the bottom right corner of your touchscreen for you to scribble block letters or cursive writing. As you go on scribbling, the autocomplete feature will be changing according to what you have written; then you can select the best option or the closest one to what you wrote.

TechCrunch says that “The new feature will work on iOS5+ devices, as well as Android 2.3+ phones and Android 4.0 tablets.”  Be that as it may, the new handwriting feature will not replace keyboard input. It will only make it easier for you to look for something while you’re holding a cup of coffee or are busy with other activities.

In order for you to use it, you first need to enable the handwriting option on your device’s Google preferences. Once you do, you’ll notice a small button on the bottom right corner, once you click on it, scribble away!


Introducing Bottlenose

Article first published as Intoducing Bottlenose on Technorati.


Without a doubt, the king of search engines doesn’t need to be introduced. It has become a verb and even an adjective. Google has been top innovation for quite a while now. This said, it also bases search results on keyword relevance and geolocation, among other very important factors. However, a new search engine is starting out with a similar notion, yet it has concocted a recipe with social media and crowdsourcing as its main ingredients: Bottlenose.

Unlike Google, you need to set up an account with Bottlenose so it can shape your search results based on your social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Linked in and others). It also provides you with a remote posting service for all of your linked accounts.

As for search results, it gives you the option to save them to your dashboard so you can review them later. It also gives you a list of trending topics and trending people which with one clic you can browse everything about that subject. With all the saved results, trends and a summary of all the publications and articles you follow, you can review topics as if they were an electronic newspaper.

To play the devil’s advocate, this is not 100% new. There are plenty of other services that can come up with a summary of your favorite publications, just like Rockmelt, Percolate, or Flipboard. As for search results combined with Social Media, Google had iGoogle which was recently shut down.

However, this little video might walk you through this new product and if you find it convenient enough, you can always sign up, and of course, it’s for free.


How do you Make the Leader follow You?

It’s been a while since I’ve written about the big elephant in Tech World: Google + vs Facebook. In fact, it’s been a while since I’ve written an entry on this blog for that matter. But over the course of the last article, what have we learned as social networkers? You can always make the leader follow you and turn things around in the blink of an eye.

Facebook was getting a fat belly sitting on its throne for a while now. There was no social network out there that could even make it stand up and do a little work out. Now it seems breaking a sweat doesn’t even begin to describe this situation. Let’s look at some fact before and after G+ made its “plus” sign the scarlett letter on Facebook’s forehead.


Facebook did a few changes on its network: First apps came pouring like a hurricane. People started complaining and so the network cut back on spammy apps. Only Zynga came across as a worthy side kick to a lot of people. (Who could forget all those Farmville invites?).

One of the most talked about issues was security and privacy policies. Although people were endlessly complaining, Facebook didn’t really do much about it but band-aid the situation. Truth be told, even if you restricted you profile so that only certain people could see things, the process was too complicated and sometimes unreliable.


Since G+ came into the scene, it has been nothing but a ghost chase for Zuckerberg’s network. Privacy settings were remastered by G+, in fact, presented in an entirely different model. Simple and easy as to placing people in different, drag and drop circles. More importantly, it’s effective.

G+’s interface is cleaner, more understandable and can be integrated with other Google family products like YouTube. You can simultaneously watch a video with dozens of people over the Hangouts feature.

What’s Facebook reaction? Exactly that, a reaction. Instead of innovating on their own, trying to come up with new, different and improved features, Facebook has done nothing but imitate G+ in any way possible. The interphase has changed, privacy settings can be chosen from the publication box and other things.

But here’s the interesting part: not only is Facebook falling behind and following G+ like a lost puppy, it’s making its own network a lot more confusing and cluttered. There are so many mixed features, it’s hard for the public to keep up with them and to even notice that they can do something useful for them.

So there it is. It’s not quite the David vs Goliath situation, is more like a Godzilla vs King Kong deal. We can all figure out who’s who in that scene. Let’s see if in truth those 700 million users can get a change of hearts.

A Working Culture Apart

Working cultures around the world are very different from one another, but the most common one is to have a fixed weekly schedule, (normally 9am-5pm) with a lunch break. Sitting down in front of a computer, with no access to other sites other than the ones permitted by the company.

It’s been said a thousand times over that this not only inherently cripples employees’ creativity, but their very willingness to work as well. In a much more creative environment, not only do people feel comfortable in doing their job, but it is a cradle for new ideas.

When an employee receives other perks than just their pay check, worries go down and they focus on what’s important: goals being met. How great is it to not worry about going out to have lunch in near by fast food restaurants or cook something up to bring to work in a duffel bag?

How great it is that you can actually work out your worries in an integrated gym? All that food lying around in workplaces that feast their employees away every lunch time needs a separate part to bring all those calories down.

The old school of thought may think this not only expensive but unnecessary, but take a look at the tech industries, mostly based in Silicon Valley. It’s the fastest growing industry on record and most of them have these perks and so much more. Now, not only can this industry profit from these practices. When well adapted, it can be used in any line of work.

Can you imagine bankers playing ping pong as they talk of their latest merger? It’s no different than a good old tennis match or Golf game. Why not having in the office and save time?


Google + Jumpstarts Real Time Search

Article first published as Google + Jumpstarts Real Time Search on Technorati.

After Real Time Search was suspended this past July, Google had to continue operating without this feature. However, as soon as Google + was released and started gaining users, they quickly realized it could be used as a Twitter-like feed.

Instant Trending Results

The advantages given by the new social network are an improvement of pre-existing features. Users have realized this as they comment on the G+ main stream about the social network being a “more profound micro-blogging” service, and even, should you want to spend the time, a full blogging space as well. These remarks were made by popular heavy users such as Chris Brogan and Robert Scoble.

This means that since there is more content to pull information from, Real Time Search can now base its queries and results on Google + alone. As described on Mashable, Google + is much more than just sharing, it is also about providing quality content on worldwide instant trends.

Users have also found tons of other uses for the new network, including finding a job. So now for more information, other than just using the “Trending Worldwide” column on TweetDeck or the #TT hashtags on Twitter’s webpage, you can also look for it in real time from active G+ participants.

Although the service is complimentary to Twitter, let’s not forget that Twitter is a micro-blogging service, while G+ is a broader “micro”-blogging one. It would be like reading a headline vs. reading the full story from a user somewhere in the world.
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The Web Writes History in a Different Way

History has always been a compilation from people’s memories, a few portraits, photographs, diaries and mostly delicate artifacts that have been left behind after people pass away. We can only gather what little clues we get and build a story from it. Even when there were writers and historians recording events on a daily basis in their journals, we are left with only one version of the truth. Let’s say the writer was honest, but he or she could only be honest as far as their perspective would let them. Perhaps they didn’t see a key event, they missed a word, they heard something wrong or something else went otherwise, so our clues are left corrupted.

We can never be 100% sure of history because well, we weren’t there to witness it. However that might come to an end. We are the first generation of human beings that can record history like never before. Every blog post, tweet, status update, share or any other interaction done online is a definite, exact and accurate clue of what happened, down to the very second it was launched into the web.

Adam Ostrow makes sure to remind people about this in his TED Talk presented on July 2011. He also mentions that of course these clues or entries will long outlive us. Of course this is also true for ancient scripts, monuments and artifacts. But these posts can be shared to the entire world without damaging them. For example, when there is a natural disaster, people tweet about it, share pictures, make videos out of it and what not. They each contribute with a piece of hard rock evidence of what’s going on.

Of course there would be so many publishers and information givers that each will see the event from a different angle, which will give us a more holistic and accurate story from more than just one version of the facts. Not even certified reporters can achieve this. The power of crowd sourcing is greater than any certification, title or authority can achieve. A story told by 750 million Facebook users for example, can never be accurately reached by a single reporter or even blogger like yours truly.

Information has never been richer. We are a collective historian society as every second goes by.We can finally leave a definite, mystery-free record of our existence for generations to come.

Google + as a Job Finder

Article first published as Google + as a Job Finder on Technorati.

Being able to interact with Opinion Leaders was never easier than it is today. Twitter started it all by allowing people to follow verified accounts of celebrities, politicians, religious personalities, and so many important people around the world. As you read your Twitter feed, you know that if you follow someone of that stature, he or she is the very person who typed that message (at least most of the time), especially if they reply to one of your tweets.

In a deeper way, the same thing happens on Google +. However, instead of micro-blogging your message you can actually have a conversation. So what are the perks more than just being able to talk directly to big names? If the conversation gets interesting enough, it will be more meaningful than linking your electronic résumé with a network of people. Potential employers or business partners can get to know you personally; know your level of knowledge and skills simply by interacting with you no matter where you are.

However, do keep in mind that not everyone can find their dream job through this channel. Not just because you still need to get invited to be part of Google +, but because certain industries just don’t get their main stream information or interaction from a social network as mentioned on MSNBC.

The article also mentions this magnificent approach of getting your voice heard as a great advantage over mutual acceptance through a social network. Both Twitter and Google + allow you to follow someone without them having to follow back. Even if it is a “one-sided conversation” you can still be seen, read and heard by that person.

Google + can really be used however you want: it can be a purely personal network, a professional one or both. Circles make it possible for you to use it for several things at the same time without them stepping on each other’s toes. So are you ready to find your dream job while you post your weekend-at-the-beach pics?

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Facebook vs Google + Becomes the New Mac vs PC

Article first published as Facebook vs Google + Becomes the New Mac vs PC on Technorati.

Remember the video clips featuring two actors representing Mac and PC? It was a great representation of what still goes on between both brands. Although the videos were made to promote Mac over PC, they still coexist. Even with Mac only having a 15% of the pie in the US, rest assured Mac computers aren’t going anywhere; if anything, they’re growing every day.

Same thing seems to be happening on the newborn battle between Facebook and Google +. With 750 million users Facebook has world domination up until this point. They should definitely take care of their own share, that’s for sure. Just last week CNBC reported Facebook Stock to be in Jeopardy.  It’s no wonder when despite Facebook’s attempt to “wow” their audience with their Skype add-in launch, Google+ is still growing and it still represents a direct threat.

Google+ isn’t going anywhere either, except further growth. To be honest, it’s comforting as a user to finally see some healthy competition as far as social networks go. With Twitter as King of micro-blogging and Facebook as King of overall social networks, there didn’t seem to be much hope for anyone else to bring more innovation to the table.

G+ has brought a much needed push in the industry where in order to be better, brands need to come up with improvements. For example, just this week Facebook launched Business exclusive profiles to counter Google +’s business approach. It is a subsite that will not interfere with personal profiles and make it easier for companies to stop impersonating an individual.

This shoulder to shoulder race is representative of what true competition needs: countering with new products and services, so that in the end the true benefitiary is the consumer. Hopefully both Facebook and Google + can stay in the game to continue this benefit. Which actors will be chosen to impersonate the social giants should there be a “Mac vs PC”-like video?

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Check Your Google+ Account From Your iPhone

Article first published as Now you can Check Your Google+ Account From Your iPhone on Technorati.

Google is taking one step at a time to bring G+ to more people and devices. The very same day that Google+ was released, the Android App was launched as well. This made the rest of Smartphone users a bit anxious to be able to access their new profiles. But now, the second favored mobile platform is iPhone.

You can now go to the Apple App store and download it (that’s if you haven’t already). However, if you want to download it to your iPad, you’ll have to be patient. G+ has only been released for the iPhone version as mentioned on Techspot.

For BlackBerry or other types of Smartphone users, you’ll have to visit the mobile page, which seems to be a little slow (depending on your carrier) until the app comes out.

Now, as a Google + user, I’ve noticed a lot of comments on the main stream about how many things are still lacking. Yes, it’s true there are still several things that need be done; for example sharing capabilities. If you see a video, picture or webpage you’d like to share, a G+ share button needs to come into place. However, we all need to remember, it is still in its Beta stage; meaning that all these adjustments are being done over time.

Nevertheless people’s response to G+ has been amazing. It has already reached the 10 million user threshold. I have also seen countless new uses that users themselves have found for Google +. Among these avid discoverers is Chris Brogan. In fact he organized a Webinar on these uses.

The point is that Google + is a canvas that can be molded and discovered by each one of us. For me, G+ is an excellent place to follow opinion leaders, discover new theories and share information with people all over the world that share my interests. Let’s see what new advancements bring as tools to this canvas.

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Google + Slowly turning from Blue to Pink

Article first published as Google + Slowly turning from Blue to Pink on Technorati.

The less than a month-old social network has an overwhelming number of male users, a figure that even beats male gamers. According to this report on Game Beat 53% of social mobile gamers are women and 60% of traditional console gamers are men. This figure does not even come close to the male-female ratio on Google + at the beginning: a swapping 87% of Google + users were male as reported on CNET


This absolutely makes sense, because being a Google + user since day one, all of the people in my circles and the ones adding me to theirs were all male except for one. Today however this ratio is slowly changing. In the same article on CNET, 33.6% of people on Google + are now women.

It’s nice to see pink slowly invading the social network, too many guys were having a super party at the new place; almost as if it were a modern male-geek only club. Indeed it was a little lonely as a woman in there.

But have you wondered why this number was so high? Google+ invites were (and still are) the only way to get in and create your profile. Which means that all of the people who started the viral movement were major fans dying to get an invite (guilty as charged) just like an Apple fan would camp out a Mac store on the eve of a new iPad release. Who would you camp out with? Only with a person who is just as crazy or crazier than you to get it. The same applies to Google +, you would only invite people who are dying to get in. Since the Tech World is male dominated still, well there really is no surprise.

Good thing Google reopened invites; early majority can now balance things out for the innovators. It makes you wonder how the main streaming channel will change, what kind of subjects will now be posted? Stay tuned if you are already a Google + user, and if you aren’t still, ask for your invite, we still need more girls!

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