Inside these posts: Search engines

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Google 1Q earnings miss analyst target

Google’s first-quarter earnings came in below analyst projections as the Internet search leader sped up hiring and increased spending other area to drive up its expenses. Get the full story »

Sync Technology Center to close Tuesday

The Sync Technology Center, a West Loop office aimed at becoming a hub for Chicago’s high-tech scene, is closing its current location on Tuesday after just four months in the space.

Mike Rhodes, a Chicago entrepreneur, had opened the center in November to provide office space to startups, as well as other firms specializing in services such as marketing or search engine optimization. Rhodes was also overseeing a new $5 million early-stage investment fund, and the center played host to many local tech events. Get the full story »

Chrome users now can block certain search results

AFP | Google Inc.  on Monday gave users of its Chrome Web browser the ability to block search results from low-quality Web sites known as content farms.

Google’s principal engineer, Matt Cutts, said Chrome users can download and install an extension for Chrome that blocks sites which provide “shallow or low-quality content” from their search results. Get the full story »

Google: We’re working on bad search results

If you have been frustrated lately by search results on Google, you’re not alone, and Google knows it.

There’s been a drumbeat of criticism of Google’s search results coming out of Silicon Valley — and now the Internet giant has responded, saying it has heard “the feedback from the Web loud and clear” and believes it “can and should do better.”

In particular, the company is talking about stopping “content farms,” which provide low-quality, often unreliable and sometimes plagiarized information on a certain topic, just to get traffic from search. Get the full story »

Facebook tops Google as most visited site in U.S.

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg announces a new Facebook email messaging system in November. (Justin Sullivan/Getty)

Facebook surpassed Google for the first time as the most visited website in the United States for most of 2010.

The social network site edged out with 8.9 percent of all U.S. visits between January and November 2010, while ranked second with about 7.2 percent of all visits, according to online measurement service Experian Hitwise. Get the full story »

New Bing draws on Facebook to take on Google

Microsoft Corp. is hoping its Bing search engine can gain more ground on Google with a little more help from Facebook and its other Internet friends. As part of an extensive upgrade, Bing will feature more recommendations and other information from people’s social circles on Facebook to help distinguish its results from Google’s. Get the full story »

Google list shows hottest search terms in Chicago

(AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

Education-related Web sites ranked among the most popular Google searches for Chicagoans in 2010, according to the search giant’s newly released “Zeitgeist” list.

Google compiled lists of the hottest search items for individual U.S. cities, ranking searches based on their uniqueness to that city. A search query is considered unique if it is “disproportionately popular” in a certain city versus the rest of the country, Google said.

In Chicago, the top search was the bulky “,” which is a Web portal for Chicago Public School students to manage grades and assignments. Jim Lecinski, Google’s Chicago-based managing director of U.S. sales, said students were likely bringing home flyers or notes from teachers with the URL printed on it. Their parents would then type the address into a Google search bar instead of their browser’s address bar. Get the full story »

AOL mulls breakup, then merger with Yahoo

AOL Inc., undergoing a radical transformation into the king of content on the Internet, is actively exploring a breakup involving a complicated series of transactions that may lead to a merger with Yahoo Inc., sources close to the plans told Reuters.

The plans are still in the exploratory stage and Yahoo has not been contacted, the sources said. The plans are also fraught with complications involving myriad moving pieces. Get the full story »

Google, Hachette ink accord on book scanning

Google has signed an accord with France’s biggest book publisher Hachette Livre on the scanning and sale of out-of-print books, which grants the publisher wide control over pricing and content. Get the full story »

Google employee fired after leaking raise memo

From CNNMoney | Google has fired an employee who leaked news that the search giant is giving a 10 percent across-the-board pay raise to it workers. Google CEO Eric Schmidt announced the salary hike in a memo late Tuesday, which was then posted on several blogs, including Business Insider. Get the full story »

Google giving 10% raises to workers

Moving to staunch the defection of staff to competitors, Google Inc. is giving a 10 percent raise to all of its 23,000 employees, according to people familiar with the matter. The raise, which will be given to executives and staff across the globe, is effective in January. Get the full story »

Report: AOL hires financial adviser for Yahoo pursuit

AOL Inc. has hired financial advisers to look into strategic options that could include a combination with Yahoo Inc., according to a newspaper report.

The Wall Street Journal reported Monday that AOL’s advisers have been presenting various scenarios to the company about possible ways the two could combine operations. It cited unidentified people familiar with the matter. Get the full story »

Google blocks data from Facebook amid rivalry

Google will begin blocking Facebook and other Web services from accessing its users’ information, highlighting an intensifying rivalry between the two Internet giants.

Google will no longer let other services automatically import its users’ email contact data for their own purposes, unless the information flows both ways. It accused Facebook in particular of siphoning up Google contact data, without allowing for the automatic import and export of Facebook users’ information.

Facebook, with more than 500 million users, relies on email services such as Google’s Gmail to help new users find friends already on the network. When a person joins, they are asked to import their Gmail contact list into the social network service. Facebook then tells the user which email contacts are also on the social network. Get the full story »

Britain says Google Street View breached law

Web search giant Google broke UK law by harvesting emails, Internet addresses and passwords while collecting data for its Street View maps service, Britain’s Information Commissioner said on Wednesday. Get the full story »

Search engine firm TalentDrive hires Allstate exec

TalentDrive, the Chicago-based online resume search engine company founded by a former Leo Burnett executive, has hired former Allstate Corp. manager Jeff Tomaszewski as its chief technology officer.

TalentDrive’s chief executive is Sean Bisceglia, who in 1998 sold his technology marketing firm to Leo Burnett and later became the ad firm’s technology group CEO.

In May TalentDrive was highlighted in a U.S. News & World Report article on “How to Stand Out from the Crowd.” The company’s search engine is called TalentFilter. Get the full story »