Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Google's New Real Time Search Streams

Google upped the relevance factor of its search results with the launch of a new real-time feature that integrates live updates from blogs, news sites, Twitter, Facebook, and more.

Now, when you enter a search term like "Hotel Taj Mumbai" into Google, you'll not only get results from across the web, you also get the option of checking out a real-time stream of what people are saying about the Hotel right that minute in the news and blog posts, or on popular social networking sites like Twitter and FriendFeed. Besides the obvious coolness factor, the new feature makes it possible to get news related to your search term almost the instant it happens instead of waiting hours or days for web sites to get indexed.

This is a pretty awesome way to find out about breaking news or what people are saying about the latest blockbuster film. Imagine hearing about a traffic jam on the bridge right from passengers who Tweet about being stuck in traffic, or getting the skinny on movie reviews as people talk about it on FriendFeed. It's basically integrating what we like best about Twitter directly into Google. To turn it on for search results, just:

Click on "Latest results" or select "Latest" from the search options menu to view a full page of live tweets, blogs, news and other web content scrolling right on Google. You can also filter your results to see only "Updates" from micro-blogs like Twitter, FriendFeed, Jaiku and others. Latest results and the new search options are also designed for iPhone and Android devices when you need them on the go, be it a quick glance at changing information like ski conditions or opening night chatter about a new movie — right when you're in line to buy tickets.

Google partnered with Facebook, Twitter, FriendFeed, MySpace, Jaiku, and Identi.ca to pull status updates into search results from all those services. Google says the new service will be available to everyone in the next few days, but check out the video above in the meantime to see for yourself what it does.

It's really amazing to see live updates in search results, but there's plenty of people that don't give a hoot about what the folks on Twitter or Facebook are talking about. It will also be interesting to see how Google keeps the signal-to-noise ratio down when huge news breaks and people everywhere are blogging, posting, and sometimes unintentionally spreading false information.

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Thursday, November 26, 2009

What is Social Media?

Social Media is an umbrella that covers your various activities and integrates technology, social interactions, videos, pictures and words. Not all of the above mentioned needs to be shared in one spot, but a few examples of such places that utilize these functions are most likely places you are either using or have heard of, such as; Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, LinkedIn, Mixx, YouTube and countless others. Social Media is the new-aged Media. It has traveled past radio and television, to allow us to connect globally in an interactive way. The difference between Media and Social Media is that we can receive information (what ever form it is in) in real-time and be able to share it with others in a fast fashion. The most significant difference is the social aspect, we are able to be heard, to share our voice, opinions and in some ways become the reporter.

With Media, there is a disconnect, we are the audience and we tune in to what ever news or entertainment news organizations that we’d prefer, with Social Media, whatever Social Network we belong to, we can not only be fed all types of news, but we are connected with one another as a community, with “like” buttons, comment sections and tagging to what or whom we want. We are limitless and in this fast pace society we are enjoying the less time consuming approach to being in touch with our world.

Examples of social media software applications include:

Social Media is not a place to conquer but a place to be involved, to help shape the way we share and to be a member of a non-exclusive growing population.

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