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Opera partners with

Although it doesn't always get the most attention, Opera is a solid browser that continues to improve with each version. While they work on their next version, codenamed Peregrine (like the falcon), subtle improvements are being added to the current release, 9.51. The latest addition is for the search bar. What do we think is so interesting about that? First, it's a step toward competing...

Google joins Bloglines with iPhone version of Reader

Monday Google unveiled yet another beta site. Google Reader is now formatted for the iPhone. iPhone users tired of pinching and stretching and tapping text only links in the normal version of Reader or dealing with the plain Classic mobile version of Reader can head over to to check out the new beta site. With the iPhone-enabled web-app, Google joins in... launches mobile voice assisted driving directions

Clever web based tools on your mobile phone have made getting around the city much easier in the past year or two. We've always had 411 service, but now services such as GOOG-411 will SMS us the address so we have it on us after the call. If you've ever been asked, "What's the name of that great pizza place on 4th? It starts with Mel's", using mobile search tools you can probably easily find out.... launches anonymizer tool

Remember back in July when told us the company would "soon" be launching a tool that would let you automatically erase your search history to protect your privacy? Yeah, well soon is finally here, 5 months later. The world's fourth most popular search engine has officially launched AskEraser, the most aggressive search engine anonymizing tool we're aware of. All you have to do is click...

Anonymity sweeps the internet: Microsoft jumps on the bandwagon

Ask is doing it, Google's doing it, so of course Microsoft doesn't want to be left out of this new privacy sensation that's sweeping the nation. Of course, while Google announced a policy to limit how long it holds onto personally identifiable search data and Ask launched a service to let users delete their private data immediately after a search, Microsoft is calling for a new set of standards.... to launch anonymous web search tool

Sure, Google says it plans to reduce the amount of time it hangs on to personal user data for. But is aiming to win the anonymous web search war (is there a war? Did somebody forget to tell us?) with a new weapon: AskEraser. Here's how it works. You enter a search term into the world's 4th most popular search engine. will perform the search. And then it will immediately forget your... gets a major overhaul

Search engine has launched a new site design. When you first navigate to the website, you'll see a clean page with a search bar and a couple of icons representing different types of searches (web, images, city, news, blogs, etc). It's a bit like Google, if Google had icons next to its search types. But once you enter a search term, things are very different. First off, if you pause for a... adds official blog feeds to web results has started including official blog feeds in their search results when you search for popular brands or web site names. The feed listing displays the last three or four posts on the website's official blog at the top of the results page, along with a link to the blog itself. The feed even appears above the sponsored listings. When you search Download Squad, for example, you'll see our... adds... emoticon search?

The latest post at the blog begins, "For a long time people have wanted the ability to search for terms and phrases on the web using non-letter (A-Z) characters. Put another way, searching using non-alphanumeric characters." This is a promising start--I've occasionally been annoyed by the fact that Google interprets almost all non-alphanumeric characters as spaces--but then things go off...

Bloglines and launch blog search engine

Bloglines, the immensely popular web-based feed reader owned by, launched its long-awaited blog search engine yesterday. The search can be accessed from both the Bloglines and web sites, with slightly different interfaces. Bloglines' search adds a "+" button next to each search result that lets you preview posts in their entirety and a "more info" link that shows a cute pop-up...

Online mapping services compared

A lot flew beneath my radar last week, including, unfortunately, a great post by TechCrunch's Frank Gruber called Comparing the Mapping Services, in which he compares, with some nice screenshots and tables, the big five online map services:, Google, Yahoo!, Windows Live, and MapQuest. Gruber praises all of the services, but in the end he says (spoiler alert!), "Overall, Yahoo Maps was...

Microsoft poaches CEO Steve Berkowitz

Microsoft has hired away's CEO Steve Berkowitz to lead its Online Business Group. Berkowitz is credited with's revival and market gains over the last year and leading the redesign which removed the site's pop-up and banner ads. He's also the former President and CEO of IDG Books, publisher of the "Dummies" series. The Online Business Group is the umbrella under which... launches Google-style maps

Sometime in the last week or so launched a brand new map and driving direction service that definitely takes more than one cue from Google Maps. In fact, its basic functionality works pretty much exactly like Google Maps'. You can click and drag the map and zoom just like with Google Maps and it has street, satellite, and hybrid ("mixed") views like you're accustomed to. Once you...

Jeeves gets the pink slip

What a long strange trip it's been for the fictional, net-based "butler of information" Jeeves. He's survived the dot-com crash to turn into a Thanksgiving balloon, and now gets fired unceremoniously? For what? According to the BBC, annoying Barry Diller. Of course, last March, owned by IAC boss Diller, purchased the Jeeves site for a cool couple of billion. Ever since then...