I keep saying . . . to people trying to get more traffic to their website . . . they need video!

Google loves video. Even this relatively simple ‘before-and-after’

There were two critical masses that led to the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak on Friday: One was the horde of protesters who flooded Tahrir Square in the country’s capital of Cairo for two weeks. The second was the fusion of millions of observers, pundits, and supporters around the world into a sort of leaderless digital watchdog, an unwavering force that ensured the international eye would not stray from Egypt.

It’s the latter where we can credit social media.

We shouldn’t go so far as to call this a social media revolution, but it nevertheless is arguably the first time in history that we’ve seen Facebook and Twitter, a crucial part of the way we now communicate, speedily and successfully conveying the ideas and beliefs that do lead to a revolution . .

In the ‘Revelation of the Magi,’ Christ Appears as a ‘Star-Child’

An ancient text called the “Revelation of the Magi,” has been rediscovered and tells a very different version of the Three Wise Men’s journey to Bethlehem.

“It ends up being the most complex, richest, most strange, the strangest story of the Wise Men to come out of Christian antiquity,” said Brent Landau, an expert in ancient Biblical languages and literature. “Until now, it had never been translated into English.”

Landau, who teaches in the Religious Studies program at the University of Oklahoma, translated the text from Syriac and published it in his book, “The Revelations of the Magi: The Lost Tale of the Wise Men’s Journey to Bethlehem.”

The ancient text’s original author is still unknown, although it is written from the point of view of the Magi themselves. Landau tracked it down in the Vatican archives and believes it is about 1,700 years old.

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Google has changed its local search algorithm (again!). Your company’s listing – which may have been on the first page of an organic search a month ago, may now be on the 8th!

We’re still pondering the implications of the new rules. But, generally, the old standards still apply: optimized pages, keywords, external backlinks, and original content.

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Hope your holidays were great.

If you have nice Thanksgiving photos for your website, send ’em over!

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Google’s throwing a party, but network TV is snubbing the invitation.

Three major broadcast networks are blocking Google TV’s access to their online programs. That’s not a good first sign for a product whose main purpose is to make internet content as easy to watch as your local station, whether you’re looking at a TV screen or your computer.

To be clear, ABC, NBC and CBS are not stopping their over-the-air programming from being viewed through Google TV, which is only now just going on sale. Watching programs that come from your cable or satellite feed are unaffected. But online versions of network programming — on the sites of the broadcasters, which are ordinarily accessible from any computer — are not available from Google TV, the Wall Street Journal first reported Friday.

And the reason is clearly to further postpone the time when you can cut the cord.

Convergence has been a hot topic for more than a decade but Google TV is the first serious attempt to combine the internet and broadcast television in sort of simple “one-click” way. It’s not about web surfing or e-mailing from your couch, but rather getting easy access to programs off the web as easily as you’d change channels. And, thanks to the broadcasters themselves, a lot of professional content already lives online.

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Users spend more time on Facebook than Google says the analyst firm ComScore. According to the American Institute, the time spent by Internet users on the social network is more important than that spent on Google. And this concerns not only the search engine, but also other services from Mountain View: YouTube, Gmail, or Google News.

Facebook, Social Network shown a great growth in recent years, Facebook has become very important in the online activities of many users. With 500 million members, the social network founded by Mark Zuckerberg has become one of the busiest websites on the net. So much so that now it is giving threat to Google, and eventually persuade advertisers to invest more in Facebook than in the firm in Mountain View.

A new study by analyst firm comScore U.S. goes in this direction. According to the Associated Press, which reports the findings of the investigation, the U.S. Internet have spent more time on Facebook than Google in August last. ComScore said that they spent 41.1 million minutes on the social network, 39.8 million cons on all sites of the Google brand.

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Employers cut a more-than-expected 131,000 jobs in July as modest private sector job gains were outpaced by the loss of 143,000 temporary Census workers and steep layoffs by state and local governments, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday.  
The total 131,000 job cuts also exceeded the 65,000 projected by economists.
“There’s some loss of momentum here,” says Jim O’Sullivan, chief economist of MF Global. “It’s still a very weak labor market recovery.”
Another troubling development: Total job cuts in June were revised upward to 221,000 from 125,000 as the private sector gained just 31,000 jobs, fewer than the 83,000 initially estimated.
Nevertheless, Friday’s report provided no signals that the nation is at risk of slipping back into a recession that most economists believe ended last summer. Rather, the news simply underscored recent evidence of a weakening recovery, including sluggish consumer spending, a stalled housing market and a slowdown in factory output.
“Slower growth looks certain, but it’s not a double dip,” says Wells Fargo economist Mark Vitner. 

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German football fans should brace themselves for disappointment in Wednesday’s World Cup semifinal against Spain, according to the latest prediction of an octopus with a knack for picking winners.

Paul the octopus, a psychic cephalopod at Sea Life in Oberhausen, western Germany, has become a World Cup phenomenon after correctly predicting the victors in all five of Germany’s matches so far and Tuesday’s ceremony was carried live on German television.

Sea Life staff help Paul make his prediction by lowering two boxes of food into his tank, one carrying a German flag and the other bearing that of their opponents. The case he opens first is adjudged to be his predicted winner.

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Solstice celebrations center around the day of the astronomical summer solstice. Some choose to hold the rite on the 21st of June, even when this is not the longest day of the year, and some celebrate June 24th, the day of the solstice in Roman times.

The solstice itself has remained a special moment of the annual solar cycle of the year since Neolithic times.

Although Midsummer is originally a pagan holiday, in Christianity it is associated with the nativity of John the Baptist, which is observed on the same day, June 24, in the Catholic, Orthodox and some Protestant churches. It is six months before Christmas because Luke 1:26 and Luke 1.36 imply that John the Baptist was born six months earlier than Jesus, although the Bible does not say at which time of the year this happened.

In East Asia, the summer solstice is Xiàzhì (pīnyīn) or Geshi (rōmaji) (Chinese and Japanese: 夏至; Korean: 하지(Haji); Vietnamese: Hạ chí; literally: “summer’s extreme”) and is the 10th solar term.

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