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Google Unveils Search Updates for Mobile, New Page Rank Algorithm and Knowledge Graph Comparisons (The Next Web)
Google on Thursday announced a handful of new updates to the company’s search offering, including a major update to Google’s search algorithm that the company calls “Hummingbird.” The new algorithm affects 90 percent of all searches and has been in place for about a month, said Amit Singhal, senior vice president at Google. ReadWrite The changes aim to allow more natural “conversations” that will make it easier to refine searches, and simpler search through musical artists and songs. Google also updated its iOS and Android search apps, promising additional changes in the near future. The Verge
You can look at maps directly with the iOS app and, more interestingly, directly ask Google to save reminders for you, which will pop up at notifications directly within the Search app. The features don’t quite bring it up to parity with Google Now on Android — which is of course much more integrated with the core OS — but it does finally bring features to iPhone users that have been lacking. Forbes Scott Huffman, a key engineering director at Google currently working on natural language, said that part of the impetus for the change was that as more people speak searches into phones, they’re doing so in a more natural way than they type in queries – which is to say more complicated. So Google’s search formulas needed to be able to respond to them. Bloomberg Businessweek Google is beefing up its search engine to keep its lead in the industry, a position that has helped it become the largest online-advertising company. The Mountain View, Calif.-based company will grab 33 percent of worldwide digital ad revenue in 2013, up from 32 percent in 2012, according to eMarketer. Facebook is projected to be No. 2 this year, with 5.4 percent, followed by Yahoo’s 3 percent.
Cory Booker Dabbles in Online Flirtation with ‘Stripper Model Weirdo’ from Oregon (New York Daily News)
The Newark, N.J., mayor and Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate has a not-so-secret admirer who describes herself as a “stripper model weirdo” and goes by the Twitter handle Lynsie Lee, according to tweets and a personal message. Booker, who is 44 and single, has been on the receiving end of some racy tweets from Lee, of Portland, Ore., over the past year, including more than one lascivious invitation to consummate their friendship.
Reddit Hosts 2nd Annual Global Day of Service (SocialTimes)
When it comes to altruistic tech companies, reddit might not be top of mind, but the social-bookmarking site is doing some good things. Just a few weeks ago, co-founder Alexis Ohanian announced a book tour to talk to college students about entrepreneurship. Turns out this tour launches just a couple days after reddit’s second annual global day of service.
Etsy Offers Free Small Business Classes, Hopes to Expand Program (Mashable)
Online craft marketplace Etsy last week started classes to teach business skills in Rockford, Ill. The company is expanding the free program with three classes in New York City starting this week and hopes to spread it to other cities soon.
Consumers Prefer Email (and Even Post) to Social Media for Brand Marketing Messages [Study] (AllTwitter)
Just 2.5 percent of respondents to a June research poll of United Kingdom Internet users (conducted by Conlumino) said that social media was their favored method for receiving marketing from retailers, compared to 60.6 percent who selected email. Social media actually finished third, with communications via post preferred by almost 10 times as many consumers.
How Evernote Became a Premium Business Brand (VentureBeat)
Thursday, Evernote announced a series of partnerships with designers and a new line of physical goods, all emblazoned with the Evernote logo. The company’s foray into physical products began in 2012.
ACLU Facebook Post Deleted (Then Restored), Group Temporarily Blocked from Posting (AllFacebook)
With the amount of content posted to Facebook on a daily basis, censorship errors are unavoidable, but they become glaring when the American Civil Liberties Union is the organization being censored. ACLU speech, privacy and technology project staff attorney Lee Rowland wrote on the ACLU’s Free Future blog about the events of this past weekend, in which a Facebook post by the group highlighting another ACLU blog post was temporarily removed from the social network.
Facebook Scores $ 3 Million Win in Spammer Lawsuit (AllThingsD)
Facebook was awarded on Wednesday $ 3 million in damages and a permanent injunction against Power Ventures Inc. and founder Steve Vachani. The win came after a drawn-out battle against Vachani and Power Ventures, which had allegedly violated copyright and spamming laws by sending tens of thousands of unsolicited spam messages to Facebook users.
One Out of Five Yelp Reviews Are From Paid Reviewers (AppNewser)
Earlier this week, New York’s Attorney General, A.G. Schneiderman, announced the state had penalized 19 companies for their illegal practice of writing online fake reviews, but that hardly resolves the growing trend of paid-for reviews. According to research conducted by Michael Luca and Georgios Zervas of Boston University, only 5 percent of reviews in 2006 were fake, but that number has grown to 20 percent as of this year.
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