General

Google Analytics-Track The Web & App Data In A Single Reporting View

Google analytics announced that it is combining web and app data into a single reporting view, which helps the businesses that have multiple digital ways for their users like web, mobile apps, and other devices to better understand them.

Now analytics users can collect their data irrespective of their platform (mobile app or web) all of the stats can appear in a single view. Instead of talking about “visits”-which really only makes sense on the web-analytics now refers to “sessions” across the service.

Other changes include the addition of app-specific fields to the analytics.js JavaScript web collection library.

The new app-specific fields will include screen name, app name, app version and exception tracking to help users “more accurately” collect web app data.

Google claims the new changes that will take affect this week for users who are sending both web and mobile app data to a single property in their Google analytics account. For others their data will remain same, but they will see unified metric, dimension and segment names in their reports.

LinkedIn Lets To Block Other People

The ability to block people on social networks seems like a basic idea, but that’s one thing LinkedIn didn’t have prior to today. Paul Rockwell, LinkedIn’s head of Trust & Safety, cited the need to research different use case scenarios, and coming up with the right interface  as some of the reasons why this tool took a while to develop.

LinkedIn

To block a member, head to that’s person’s LinkedIn profile and select the “Block or report” option from the drop-down menu next to the “Connect” and “Send InMail” buttons. But before you head to that person’s profile, the company suggests, turn on the anonymous profile-viewing feature, which lets you see other members’ LinkedIn pages without them knowing it.

Blocking a member will disallow both of you from seeing each other’s profile, and if you’re connected, that connection automatically breaks. You also won’t be able to message each other, and all endorsements and recommendations will be removed. The blocked person will not be notified that they’ve been shunned, and you can block up to 50 members at a time.

 

New Google Maps-Explore The World With a Click

It’s been nearly a year now since we saw a brand-new version of Google-Maps, rebuilt from the ground up to integrate street view, Google Earth and the rest of Google’s location services into a single place. The new Google maps have been available to users, who request an invitation since May, but starting today, becoming default version for all users.

The new Google Map is the most powerful Maps ever, it aims to simplify the world’s most widely used mapping software by making it more seamless to zip in and out of the basic view, Street View, and satellite imagery.

New-Google-Map

The map is now fully interactive. Click anywhere on the map it will tell you what your cursor has landed on complete with street view thumbnail. Make smarter decisions, just search for “coffee” in your neighborhood, you’ll be able to see results and snippets right on the map, including the time and distance for each route and with the new real-time traffic reports and street view previews. Rich imagery takes you to notable landmarks, sends you flying above mountains in 3D, and gives you a sneak peek of businesses you plan to visit. The new “carousel” at the bottom of the map makes all this imagery easy to access, so you can explore the world with a click.

We can dodge jams as live traffic is displayed with color coded alerts to congested roads, which was available earlier, but what’s new is the ability to predict traffic up to a week before you embark on your journey. Click on either a train or bus stop icon and it’ll tell you what lines operate and what bus number runs on that route. For some bus stops it will even tell you the times for the next departing buses.

Finally if you’re just not ready for change you can return to the old Google Maps by clicking the help icon and select ‘return to classic Google maps’.

Yahoo Is Aiming To Bring Back Search Technology

Yahoo reportedly wants out of a deal that tie its search services to Microsoft.  According to Re/code post, Yahoo CEO Mayer is pushing two new initiatives called “Fast Break” and “Curveball” that could position Yahoo once again as a player in Web search and the lucrative search-advertising market that accompanies it.

Yahoo

It has been thus since former CEO Carol Bartz got Yahoo out of the search technology business in 2009, in favor of the Microsoft deal that was called the Yahoo & Microsoft Search Alliance. Under the 10-year agreement, Microsoft’s Bing search engine provides the search technology on Yahoo, as well as the search-advertising technology.

If Yahoo decides to create their own search engine, it’s very likely they would first start with English before expanding it to any other languages, making a Microsoft deal for those search results crucial. Yet it’s not clear how merely taking back control of its own search product will help Yahoo turn around its shrinking market share.

 

Facebook Began Rolling Out Its New Trending Feature.

Facebook began rolling out its new trending feature, designed to surface relevant conversations and it’s not using Twitter-style hashtags to organize them.

Facebook-Trending-Topic

The list, called Trending, will appear near the top of the right-hand column of the news feed for desktop users. Desktop users in the U.S., U.K., Canada, India, and Australia will begin seeing the new Trending box on the top right side of the homepage. Denoted by squiggly blue arrows, the topics range from people (Bruce Springsteen, Rex Ryan) to events (Academy Awards, Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show) to places (J.C. Penney).

“The list is personalized, including topics based on things you’re interested in and what is trending across Facebook overall,” Chris Struhar, a Facebook engineering manager, said in a statement. You can click on any headline to see the most interesting posts from your friends or Pages that are talking about that particular topic.”

Mr. Struhar said, trending is just one piece in Facebook’s larger strategy. “Our vision for news feed is to become your personal newspaper we want to connect you with all the events in the world that you will want to know about.”

 

DuckDuckGo- A Private Search Engine Answered 1Billion Queries in 2013

According to a blogpost, DuckDuckGO, the search engine that doesn’t collect or share any of your personal information, processed a record of 1 billion searches in 2013.

DuckDuckGo reported that on January7, they had fielded more than 4.5 million search requests within 24 hours. However, this doesn’t exactly mean that DuckDuckGo will be a contender to companies like Google anytime soon. Google reportedly fielded something like 2 trillion search queries in 2013 alone.

DuckDuckGo

Unlike Google, DuckDuckGo will never store historical search data or inundate you with targeted ads. Much like T-Mobile, the search engine’s spirited message convinced a great deal of users to rethink what they had been told was the status quo.

“People are making major changes in their online habits and looking for ways to protect their private information from US government surveillance” said chief executive Robert Beens.

 

Pinterest-Bought A Visual Search Startup

Pinterest recently acquired VisualGraph, a company that develops object recognition technology. This recent purchase of VisualGraph makes apparent that Pinterest want to leverage its 70 million users and associated pins to better serve the users who are searching Pinterest for topic-specific images.

With image recognition, Pinterest can go one step further and help algorithmically group images based on machine code, instead of having to rely on users pinning the two images together under a single banner. VisualGraph could help optimize the serving of relevant Pinterest ads without the need to collect endless image meta data.

Visual-Graph

Google may be a tough opponent for Pinterest-still Google currently does a pretty good job with their image search, one thing their results lack is an association with a large image based community. Pinterest’s defining feature may give the social media site an edge in the image-search game.

 

Twitter Launches Jelly-A New Question and Answer Based Search Engine

Twitter co-founder Biz Stone announced the first details of his new venture Jelly, a question and answer based search engine for iOS and Android.

In a description of Jelly featured on the startup’s website, the company says using Jelly is a more fun way to search for topics or images. It’s an app that lets you ask questions, push them out to your network, and get rapid responses. “If you have a question, there’s someone out there that knows the answer,” Stone says in a video accompanying the official blog post.

Jelly

The app aims to capitalize on the popularity of mobile smartphones and the pervasiveness of social networks. The app is also meant to personalize the search experience—it might take more inspiration from Quora, a community-based question-and-answer site, than from Google or Bing.

Facebook is working on its own new search tool, called Graph search, which is meant to answer people’s questions based on information about their friends. And Microsoft’s Bing search engine already incorporates data from Facebook and Twitter into its search results to give users more context. And though it is not meant to be “social,” Google offers its Goggles search tool on mobile devices, which aims to answer questions based on photos. What Jelly will be doing differently is that it will tap into new algorithms to help target the questions to specific networks, specifically using images. Jelly is placing a bet on the altruistic side of human nature.

The app is available now for iOS and Android.

Google’s Location History Browser

Quick! Where you were last Wednesday at 7.30 PM? If you carry any Android phone or tablet, Google now can automatically figure out where you work and warn you about traffic.

Google's-Location-Browser-History

Google launched the first version of this tool around the same time that they launched Latitude. After they killed latitude off, they kept their location browser around, polishing it up and adding new little tricks as time went on.

It’s mind-blowing to think about how much data they’re gathering, if you’re suddenly realizing there’s location or two that you’d rather weren’t sitting in your history, you can wipe it on a day-by-day basis or clean your entire location slate in one fell swoop.

Google Released Android Device Manager To Track Missing Gadgets

Google released Android device manager for locating and remotely wiping your missing phones and tablets. At that time, the service was available only on the web. Now it’s available to your mobile devices. Android device manager contains all the functionality from the website in a mobile friendly package and it is of course free.

The same functionality came to Android devices in August, but it was a cumbersome browser based solution that wouldn’t help anyone in a panic. The setup forced users to visit a website with an extremely long URL and it didn’t have the option to lock the phone or tablet at first. It was either “ring” or “erase everything” with no in-between locking measure.

Android-device-Manager

The web version works fine on Android devices through the browser, but a native app is still a preferable experience. The UI scales to both tablets and phones and there is a handy drop down menu for switching accounts. It’s also much faster than the mobile web.

The Android app is obviously only of use if you have more than one Android device, like a phone and a tablet. But if you misplace one of them, you’ll be happy to have the ADM app at the ready. Google has sense of humor, if you locate the device you are running the app on, it says “in your hand.” Oh, Google.