How to Add Pictures To Google Images

February 23, 2009 by · 36 Comments
Filed under: Image Search 

Random images from random people from random sites. These are the images in Google Image Search, and many wonder “How to add pictures to Google” or “What is the submission process?”. Both are tricky questions.

The truth is, Google does not have those images in their database. Those images are uploaded from different sites owned by other people and a web robot called spider just crawled on to those sites and remembers the publicly viewable images.

But if you want to know how other people do it here are two pieces of advice.

Advice #1 – Own a blog, and upload your photos there together with an article.

Sign up for free in Blogger.com or WordPress.com. You can also buy your own domain like www.yourname.com and get a web hosting service. Then set up your blog, design it however you like, and post an article.

If you have photos about your adventure in the Grand Canyon, make a post about it, and upload the photos. Make sure that these photos have descriptive file names like Dennis_Smith_Grand_Canyon.jpg instead of Image582.jpg. The keywords in the file name helps Google index your photo.

If you want your own photo appear in the search results, make an About Me page in your blog, and include your photo. Make sure the photo’s file name has your name it. For example, your name is China Mendez then the file name of the photo is China_Mendez.jpg. That seems a unique name, so it has high probability that it will be included in the search results if someone searches China Mendez. However, if your name is John Smith (John_Smith.jpg), which is a very common name, then there is a slim possibility your photo will be in the search results if someone searches for John Smith.

Make sure though that you submit your site to Google.

Advice #2 – Sign up in Social Networking Sites, and upload your photos there.

Some photos from social networking sites like LinkedIn.com, Digg.com, Multiply.com, and Facebook.com appear in Google image search results. These photos are included because the users set their profile, and photos viewable by public, to appear in the search engines. Just check the photo privacy settings of your social networking account. File names I believe will also be a factor.

So, that’s it.

These steps, however, does not work all the time, because there is a certain criteria on how these images appear in the search results. Besides, Google image bot may take time before it visit your blog like months. Also, Image Search’s algorithm could not be as efficient as that of Google Search since it’s harder to index images. Anyway, if you have time you can help thm describe the photos that appear in search results by playing the Image Labeler.

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The Pope Is On YouTube

January 26, 2009 by · Comments Off on The Pope Is On YouTube
Filed under: YouTube 

It is interesting how internet technology brings everyone closer, for the Pope, the leader of Roman Catholic Church is now, I say, also into social networking. 

On January 21st, the Vatican opened their dedicated YouTube channel, and was announced in Google’s official blog and YouTube blog on the 23rd. According to Father Lombardi, “This initiative is aimed at creating a climate of dialogue, and at promoting open communications in all directions.” Well, this channel is not just for Catholics but to anyone who is interested in knowing the Pope’s activities and get the news straight from Vatican. You can listen to Father Lombardi’s message here.

I am not sure how everyone will take this news, but with this channel, the Vatican or the Pope is certainly taking advantage of the internet technology to reach the modern people, whether they are believers or non-believers.

What about Facebook?

How Accurate is Google Translate?

December 10, 2008 by · 5 Comments
Filed under: Translate, Translator 

Many users ask this question after using Google Translate for the first time. They want to make sure it’s a reliable translation tool before they can brag that they can speak in another language (well, they can until someone proves otherwise).

Since only native speakers and professional translators can tell, their question most of the time is left unanswered.

Actually, there are instances that Google’s language translator can provide a translation as if a human translates it. There are also instances that it produces poor translation. Because of this translation flaw, users should only use this tool then to get an idea of what a foreign text could possibly mean in 41 languages (well, 40 minus the language to be translated).

How Is Google Translate Different From Other Online Translation Tools?

Google Translate, in comparison to other language translation tool, is using a “statistical translation system for the language pairs” instead of the rule-based approach that “requires a lot of work to define grammar and vocabularies.”

What the company actually means with their technology is that they “feed the computer billions of words of text, both monolingual text in the target language, and aligned text consisting of examples of human translations between the languages. We then apply statistical learning techniques to build a translation model.” Google first got their linguistic data from United Nations’ documents that are normally available in six languages, and acquire more from other resources.

(Their explanation still seemed vague to me, but using my imagination seemed to help me understand what Google really means. It’s like feeding their computers with text from a Bible that was written in English on the first column and in a different language on the right column.)

Can it Be Improved?

Despite the flaw of Google translator, the translations can be improved. The company is constantly working on its perfection, and even users can contribute if they see that a word or a text has been poorly translated by the computer. This can be done by native speakers who would like to test the accuracy of the tool, or by even those intermediate speaker. Both of them can easily identify a poorly translated part of the text since they have a good background of grammar rules, and idiomatic expressions.

So to contribute, all they have to do is expand the Suggest a Better Translation link. It will display a box where they can type their translation. After typing, they click the contribute button.

It may take time though for Google to update their database since they might still review what have been submitted, but at least everyone can help on improving the quality of thier language translator tool by suggesting a better translation.

How to Change Theme in Gmail

November 19, 2008 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Gmail 

I was just chatting with my friend an hour ago in Gmail when I noticed the borders turned to a darker shade of blue, and the edges got sleeker. I immediately asked my friend if he noticed any difference with his Gmail, and he said no. I told him what I saw and won’t believe me, so I sent him a screenshot.

This is what I saw on the first minutes:

This is what Gmail looks like before:

This is what Gmail is now, after the new theme was completely rolled out.

How to Change Different Themes in Gmail

The new design is only one of the themes in the Theme Lab, the new feature that Gmail just unrolled about a couple of hours ago. If you are excited to use this new feature, here’s how.

  • Log in to your Gmail Account.
  • Click the Settings link at the upper right corner of the Gmail page.
  • Once you are in the Settings page, you will be facing the General account information tab. After General, the rest of the tabs are Accounts, Labels, Filters, … , and Themes. Click the Themes tab.
  • On the Themes tab,  you have 23 themes to choose from. If you miss the old Gmail theme, just choose Classic. But you have an option to choose your own colors too!

Here are some of the themes.

Desk Theme

Gmail Desk Theme

Graffiti Theme

Gmail Graffiti Theme

Dusk Theme

Gmail Dusk Theme

This is not the first time I was there when the new design unfold in front of me. I remembered experiencing it as well in Google Analytics before, just a month ago I think. It’s cool to see it changed in front of you, though it last only a few seconds to switch.

Other Articles on Gmail:

Planning a Wedding with Google

June 29, 2008 by · Comments Off on Planning a Wedding with Google
Filed under: Analytics, Docs 

wedding bells

I guess, one of the most interesting things that you can ever do with Google is that you can plan your wedding with all the tools and services it offers. If you think this is not possible, it is, because someone just did and just got married.

The couple used Docs to share files to each other, to their parents, and to whoever who needed the file; Analytics to check if there were really friends and relatives visiting the page they created about their wedding plans.

If you want to know the whole story, you can read David’s entry about his wedding preparation.

Firefox’s Google Search Box

June 27, 2008 by · Comments Off on Firefox’s Google Search Box
Filed under: Google, Mozilla Firefox 

I know some people who are using Firefox hate to see the search bar on the right of the browser, especially if they are not using the default search engine. If you are one of them, I suggest that you just replace Google with the search engine of your choice, instead of removing the search bar.

Just click on the Google logo, and choose among the websites displayed which you like to be your primary search engine in Firefox. Pick Yahoo, Amazon.com, eBay, Wikipedia, or Answers.com. If your favorite site is not included in the default choices, you can add it by clicking Manage Search Engines.

On the Pop-up, click the ‘Get more search engines’ link located at the bottom of the window, and you’ll find out more options; there’s AOL.com, Live.com, and Ask.com. Then add to Firefox the site you want to use, let’s say Live.com. Once it’s added click on the Google logo again, and choose Live.com. Now, your primary website in the search bar is MSN’s Live instead of Google.

The Firefox’s search bar is actually a handy feature. You don’t have to type the search engine’s url in the address bar to start your search. Instead, you just go directly to the box, and type in your keywords. Once you hit enter, viola, the results you needed are in the page.

So Firefox, why Google is the default search engine?

Now that you know you can in fact replace Google with your favorite search engine like Yahoo or Live.com, don’t you wonder why Firefox has Google as it’s default search engine, when it’s not a Google product anyway but Mozilla’s?

Well if not for Google, Firefox may have not become as popular as it has been today, and has not earned millions of dollars. Some bloggers though think that this obvious favoritism of Firefox is unfair, not only to the consumers but also to other search engines.

So while Firefox still loves Google, you only have two options: remove the search box or change the box’s default search engine to the search engine of your choice.

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