Google Desktop Leaves Beta, Adds Quick Search

Google has announced the graduation of Google Desktop from “beta”. With the change comes a new feature called “Quick Search“.

As Tomas Gunnarsson, Google Desktop Software Engineer, describes it…

Three months ago, I came up with an idea that makes it easier for users to find what they’re looking for: a search box in the middle of the desktop. It’s very accessible — all you have to do is press your Ctrl key twice.

Details of Google Base Payment Options

Emails are going out to a number of people informing them that Google is now allowing the sale of items using Google Payments.

Barry Schwartz has a step-by-step overview of how to use Google Payments.

It seems like a nice little income stream for Google…

Google Base sellers who accept payments through Google will be charged 2.5% plus $.25 per transaction. If you incur a chargeback, you’ll be charged $10.

Fees will be deducted from your account when you charge your order. If you refund an order, Google will return the variable portion of the transaction fee (2.5%) to you, but will keep the flat portion of the fee ($.25).

More details on accepting payments.

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Google Mars

In case you missed it, you can now use a Google Maps interface to look at the red planet.

How do you take your Blog Ketchup?

When I scan thru the headlines on my RSS aggregator, I’m quickly trying to determine if the post is worth exploring further. I do that with everyone of the some 150+ feeds I subscribe to, except for one.

When ever Kim Krause-Berg posts to her blog, I instinctively click straight thru to the site. I know that when I get there, I’ll be better for reading what ever she has to say.

Today’s offering is no different. While many are trying to define blogging, Kim comes up with the perfect analogy. Blogs are like an order of french fries with ketchup. Different people have different ways of taking their order, but its all still fries with ketchup.

Judge Makes Google Share Info with Government

CNN is reporting breaking news…

“Federal judge says he will require Google to turn over some data to Department of Justice.”

UPDATE: AP news adds

U.S. District Judge James Ware did not immediately say whether the data will include search requests that users entered into the Internet’s leading search engine.

It looks almost certain that Google will be forced to share some small sampling of search requests with the DOJ, so they can ascertain how likely it is children will be exposed to pornography.

We’ll update as we hear more.

Americans Tell DOJ to Keep Hands Off Search Data

A new study by the Center for Survey Research at the University of Connecticut suiggest 65% of Americans oppose government monitoring of search behavior with 50% saying search engines should not turn over any information to the government.

That means either half the country is simply against “big-brother” snooping, or they’re well aware of what they’ve been searching for in the past. ;-)

Thanks to Cindy!

Google Acquires SketchUp 3D Software

Google continues is roll-up of cool technologies with news that it has acquired @Last Software, makers of SketchUp.

SketchUp offers an easy-too-learn 3D (CAD) software which is already available as a plugin for Google Earth.

So how did this latest acquisition come about? According to the founder

“We got to know a bunch of Googlers while we were building the Google Earth Plugin for SketchUp, and it quickly became apparent that we could really stir things up together. At first, it was kind of hard to imagine; after all, we’d been blazing our own trail for so long. But after we kicked it around awhile, it started to seem right. One thing led to another, and here we are.”