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Industry News

Catch up on interesting new discussion and industry news.

    The hype, benefits, and dangers of Big Data

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Feb 16, 2013
    A Readlist of all the articles referenced in this post is available here. Readlists allow you to send all the articles to your Kindle, read them on your iOS device, or download it as an e-book.

    Despite the overly alarmist title, Andrew Leonard’s How Netflix is turning viewers into puppets1 is a fascinating article on how Netflix uses Big Data in their programming decisions:

    “House of Cards” is one of the first major test cases of this Big Data-driven creative strategy. For almost a...

    Optimization points in responsive web design

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Feb 15, 2013
    Mark Boulton argues that we need to think further than breakpoints in responsive design, and also spend time figuring out the “optimization points”. From The In-Between:

    I think we’re missing a trick for using breakpoints to make lots of subtle design optimisations. [...] Content-out design means defining your underpinning design structure from your content, and then focusing on what happens in between ‘layouts’. This approach of optimising your design by adding media queries (I like to...

    The Google Asteroid Collision Logo You Never Saw

    dannysullivan
    by dannysullivan
    Feb 15, 2013
    Google prepared — and briefly was showing — a special logo in honor of today’s near miss with Asteroid 2012 DA14. However, the company removed that out of respect, following the meteor explosion over Russia.

    Below, you can see the logo — or “doodle” as Google calls them — that was intended to run today on Google. It shows an asteroid plunging down toward the second G in Google, which dodges out of the way:



    The logo above should show the animation, but if it doesn’t, here’s one part of...

    Dear Google Alerts: Why Aren’t You Working?

    dannysullivan
    by dannysullivan
    Feb 15, 2013
    One of Google’s oldest features is Google Alerts, where you can enter keywords you want to monitor and get an email report each day about any new search results that match those terms. It was awesome, but for several weeks, it’s become nearly useless.

    My long-standing settings have been for Google to check each day against “Everything” and bring back any new listings with my name in them. That has meant it routinely finds blog posts, web pages and news articles with references.

    Here’s a...

    Types Of Google Webmaster Notifications

    rustybrick
    by rustybrick
    Feb 15, 2013
    Matt Cutts of Google posted an interested video on YouTube that shared the types of Google Webmaster Tools notifications they send out.

    Google sends out hundreds of thousands of notifications each month and 90% of those are black hat related...

    My phone isn’t better than your phone

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Feb 15, 2013
    I really enjoyed Michele Catalano’s Grimes, Pop Music, and Cultural Elitism, which starts with this quote from Clare Boucher (better known as Grimes):

    I don’t see why we have to hate something just because it’s successful, or assume that because it is successful it has no substance.

    It’s an article about our tendency to look down on pop music (and the people who like pop music), but it applies to a much broader cultural phenomenon:

    The elitism one shows when they dismiss pop...

    How many types of messages does the webspam team send to Webmaster Tools?

    Feb 13, 2013
    You've been sending us various kinds of messages via WMT to improve transparency. It's a good move. How many types of messages do you send now? And...

    Google Webmaster Tools Search Queries Also Delayed

    rustybrick
    by rustybrick
    Feb 13, 2013
    It seems like someone at Google took a vacation because Webmaster Tools seems to have been recently having many many problems.

    The latest issue being reported is that the search queries report is delayed...

    Whose basket is it?

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Feb 12, 2013
    In Yours vs. Mine Dustin Curtis explains his preference to use “Your stuff” as opposed to “My stuff” in interfaces. It might sound trivial, but whether we use “My” or “Your” reveals something about how we view technology:

    After thinking about this stuff for a very long time, I’ve settled pretty firmly in the camp of thinking that interfaces should mimic social creatures, that they should have personalities, and that I should be communicating with the interface rather than the interface...

    Can I mark an email as "important" in Gmail?

    Feb 12, 2013
    It would be a really great feature to mark an email as important in Gmail. Will this ability ever be added? Bridgetti Lim Banda, Cape Town, South...