Twitter hissy fit, new Google algorithm, Wikipedia growth plans



UberMedia's Twitter Blackberry app UberSocial


Twitter has decided that while a thriving eco-system of third party apps may have done wonders for the uptake of its service, there comes a point when putting the upstarts in their place is necessary.

The first to suffer from the company’s harder line was UberMedia, which controls 20% of all tweets through a stable of mobile apps that includes Tweetdeck, Echofon, UberTwitter and Twidroyd. It was the last two of these that incurred Twitter’s wrath and lost access to the service for four days.

They returned after a short blackout last weekend (with UberTwitter now the brand name-respecting UberSocial), but UberMedia’s UberCurrent app remains offline. Clearly a sign of things to come, just days later the TwapperKeeper app (whose name begs the question: when do the prizes for awful app names get given out) cut a number of features to remain in Twitter’s good graces after the service ‘requested’ some changes.

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Google has moved to improve its search listings after criticisms that low quality ‘content farm’ sites were dominating its results.

The change to its algorithm has been unveiled first in the US, with further rollouts planned, and it’s set to have a big impact on results, with Google predicting just over 10% of all the queries it handles will be affected.

The company recently launched an extension for its Chrome browser that allows users to compile a personal blocklist of sites they didn’t want to see and says its new algorithmic change covers 84% of the domains people most frequently chose to block.

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Now Wikipedia is ten years old, the online collaborative encyclopedia has its eye on what it can achieve by 2015 and it’s thinking big (always a handy characteristic for what is in effect a growth plan).

It’s already the fifth most-visited website in the world, attracting 408 million unique visitors in October 2010 (ComScore), and Wikipedia’s Strategic Plan outlines a range of initiatives it hopes will more than double its traffic to 1 billion visitors.

One strand of its plans is increasing the number of articles in underserved languages. As an example the site highlights that the number of Wikipedia articles available to the 550 million people whose primary or secondary language is Hindi is less than a half of one percent of those in German, whose linguistic population is a third the size.


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  1. How Google Social Search Works, Plus: The War on Content Farms « Smoothness in Design
  2. How Google Social Search Works, Plus: The War on Content Farms « Christopher Busbin

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