Frederic Lardinois founded SiliconFilter in 2011. Before starting this site, he wrote about 1,500 articles for ReadWriteWeb. His areas of interest are consumer web and mobile apps, as well as Internet-connected devices like cars, smart sensors and toasters.
You can reach him at [email protected]
Google Docs just announced a user interface overhaul of its documents list. This new interface makes it much easier to organize and find the documents you upload to Google Docs. Google introduced a set of filters that now allow you to organize your files by type, visibility state (whether you shared it online, with friends, etc.), last modified date and, of course, by name.
Back in the day, Twitter's 140-character limit made sense, as the company was still mostly focused on the mobile market and tweets had to comfortably fit into a single text message. Now, however, as the majority of Twitter users use the Web and mobile and desktop apps to engage with the service, this limit makes less and less sense. TweetDeck, the popular mobile and desktop Twitter client just unveiled a new service, Deck.ly, that allows users to write blog-length Tweets without character limits.
For all intents and purposes, Egypt is currently cut off from the Internet. Even today, though, the Noor Group's DSL service in Egype remains available (though it experienced some downtime earlier today). Why is Noor, which has about an 8% market share in Egypt, allowed to continue to operate while the rest of the country's ISPs went dark days ago?
Today is Data Privacy Day and the good folks at Opera used this as a chance to commission a survey of 1,000 web uers each in the U.S., Japan and Russia and ask them about how worried they are about online privacy.
Google just announced that Google Earth now features high-quality 3D-models of virtually all the California Bay Area, including the city of San Francisco, Google's hometown of Mountain View, Palo Alto, Oakland, Redwood City, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, San Mateo, and Sunnyvale. To see this expanded 3D coverage, you will need to turn on "3D Buildings" in Google Earth.
For a lot of us, Skype is one of the most important applications on our computers. The early betas of Skype for Mac 5, though, were rough, as they introduced the same single-window interface that Skype for Windows users have had to live with for a while now. Many of the user interface choices the Skype for Mac team decided on also made the app much harder to use.
In 2009, Google launched real estate listings as one of the search options in Google Maps. Apparently, this was not a major hit, as the company today announced that it is retiring this feature because of "low usage" and "the proliferation of excellent property-search tools on real estate websites."
About two years ago, Google launched a browser plugin that allowed users to opt out of the company's ads tracking mechanism. By tracking your moves around the Internet, Google - and most other advertising companies - can ensure that you see relevant ads (read: ads you are likely to click) on the pages you visit. Today, just a few hours after Mozilla announced its plan to offer a do-not-track tool for Firefox, Google announced a new Chrome plugin that allows users to permanently opt-out of personalized ads and data tracking from not just Google, but a wide range of other online advertising companies as well.
The good folks over at ClickZ just posted a story with the following headline: "Google's Version of Groupon is Live: How it Works." Problem is, that is simply not true. The image in the article - reproduced below - is from the Google Places interface which has allowed vendors to offer coupons for a long time now (since around 2008, if I remember it right). This tab used to be called "Coupons" at one point in the past.
Usually, when we talk about plugins that crash our browsers, chances are that we are talking about Flash. Today, however, Mozilla announced that it is blocking the Skype Toolbar from its Firefox browser as it "is one of the top crashers of Mozilla Firefox 3.6.13, and was involved in almost 40,000 crashes of Firefox last week." The Skype toolbar examines every page you load for phone numbers and then re-renders these as clickable Skype buttons that enable users to initiate Skype calls right from their browser.