The “do no evil” folks at Google apparently think they did something wrong. The corporate Web log, launched last week, described the company's zeal to hire “talented engineers” at offices around the world. In the typical casual tone blogs have, CNet wrote that few people said anything when the company decided to open a European office. But the announcement of a facility in Bangalore brought criticism about outsourcing. After publishing the item in the morning, Google changed it by the afternoon to reflect what CNet said was “a less opinionated tone.”
NIGHT AT THE OPERA
A new Web browser from Opera Software ASA is the first major browser to incorporate an emerging technology that automatically delivers new blog entries and news articles. Visitors can subscribe to feeds using Really Simple Syndication (RSS), and have new items come in regularly as individual messages in Opera's mail client, which is packaged with the browser. The decision by a major browser maker to include RSS is a sign of the technology's rapid adoption. Opera is the No. 3 browser for Windows computers, behind Internet Explorer and Netscape, and is popular particularly in cell phones and handheld devices because of its small file size.
Brian Cruikshank, of research firm Ipsos-Insight, said 134 million people, or 40 percent of people with access to the Internet, have tried or used some form of wireless. On average, around the world one in four people have heard of Wi-Fi, the wireless data standard. And nearly one in 10 in urban parts of China use it to access the Internet. According to Cruikshank, the number of households with mobile phones grew last year by 100 million, representing a growth rate five times that of PCs.
Microsoft has said it will stop marketing branded hardware for wireless networking. The company has been marketing Wi-Fi hardware including base stations, laptop cards and other devices since last fall. There was no further comment on the reason for the company's decision, although it said it would support products already sold for the life of their two-year warranties.
The “For Dummies” book series has offered quick, friendly instruction on a variety of topics, taking a Cliffs Notes approach to subjects ranging from opera to Java programming and wrapping it in a familiar yellow-and-black package. Anuman Interactive is now shrinking the books to fewer than 150 pages and adding CD-ROM's that supplement the text with tutorials. New titles in the Interactive series include: “Digital Photos for Dummies,” “Family Tree for Dummies,” “Greeting Cards for Dummies,” “Home Budget for Dummies,” “Resumes and Cover Letters for Dummies” and “Typing Tutor for Dummies.” The multimedia Dummies (anumaninteractive.com/dummies) are $20 each and work with Windows 98 and later.
Personals Web sites have proven to be big money makers, thanks to 30 million visitors a month, according to ComScore Media Metrix. Results of the Elle/MSNBC.com Cybersex and Romance Survey indicate 73 percent of women who've gone on dates with cybermates have slept with one or more of them. Just over half of women have looked at adult content online and 35 percent said it helped them find “more ways to look or act sexy.” However, one-quarter of divorced respondents said online porn or chat contributed to their breakups, according to Janet Lever, a sociology professor at California State University at Los Angeles who analyzed the survey's data.
Ron Musselman covers sports for The Blade. His online column will appear this Monday on toledoblade.com.
FROM THE BLADE'S WIRE SERVICES AND STAFF.
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