Google Friends Newsletter - March 2009

POWER TIP

New features for Google Mobile App for BlackBerry

Google Mobile App for BlackBerry now features search by voice, a faster search experience on GPRS, as well as location features — like suggesting local business listings as you type. To try this, do a Google search for "pizza" and watch the location of the nearest pizza place appear before you've hit the search button. You can also search for business names, and with just one click you can call the business or view it on a map. Note that this app does not support the BlackBerry Storm.
http://www.google.com/mobile/blackberry/app

------------

NEW PRODUCTS & UPDATES

Updates to Mars in Google Earth

On March 14, we featured a doodle on the Google homepage that celebrated the birthday of Giovanni Schiaparelli, the Italian astronomer who invented the naming scheme we use to identify features on Mars today. We also launched some Google Earth updates including the "Live from Mars" layer, which lets you fly along with orbiting spacecraft and see imagery from NASA, sometimes just hours after NASA receives it. The layer also includes guided tours from Public Radio's Ira Flatow and Bill Nye, the Science Guy, who will show you the best spots on the Red Planet.
http://earth.google.com/mars

Google Health's new sharing feature

Google Health, a product that lets you organize, store, and manage your medical records securely online, just announced a new sharing feature. Google Health users can now invite others they trust (family members, a trusted care provider, a friend or a doctor) to view their medical records and personal health information online. You can stop sharing at any time, and you will always be able to see who has access to your information. You can also print a wallet-sized version of your health profile to share with doctors or family members who are not online.
http://www.google.com/health

More Gmail Labs innovations

Ever hit the send button a moment too soon and wish you had a few seconds to undo it? Well, now you can with the "Undo Send" button. Another new set of Gmail Labs features lets you preview YouTube, Flickr, Picasa and Yelp content right in your email. Gmail automatically detects links in emails from these sites and shows videos, photos, and ratings directly inside your messages. Turn on these experimental features and more from the "Labs" tab under "Settings."
http://www.gmail.com

Search for recent earthquake activity

Now when you do a Google search in the U.S. for "earthquake," you'll get information on some of the most recent, significant earthquakes from around the world, right on the search results page. Type "earthquake" into the search box followed by the city and state or U.S. zip code. Or for recent earthquake activity in other parts of the world, just type in "earthquake." The data is provided by the US Geological Survey (USGS), and you can click through to the USGS Earthquake Center for more information, or visit the epicenter of any quake using Google Maps.
http://www.google.com

-------------

MISCELLANY

Not long ago, finding the answer to something might involve a trip to the local library. Today, anyone can research a topic in seconds from the comfort of their own home or even from their mobile phone. And in the last ten years, search results have evolved from just web pages to images, videos, books, maps and lots more. As the scale of search has changed dramatically over the years, the presentation and quality of Google results have also undergone many changes. In the past year alone, we have made more than 300 improvements to the quality and speed of our search experience. Many of these are "under the hood" changes, but others are easy to spot, such as the recent rollout of longer snippets, the lines of text directly below each search result, and refinements to our related searches. If you're interested in learning more about how we approach the challenges of ongoing search quality, there's a series of posts on the Official Google Blog for your reading pleasure.
http://googleblog.blogspot.com/search/label/search quality