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Friday, August 11, 2006

The Search for Secret Google Services

Tony Ruscoe is a web developer working for a translation company in Sheffield, UK. He’s interested in translation technology, genealogy and Google.

Since stumbling across Google Base almost a month before its release and more recently uncovering some more secret Google services, several people have asked how I go about finding these new services. By way of a response, here’s a quick guide to just some of the many different ways you could use to try and find new services that Google are working on.

1. Finding a new service

The details of new services can sometimes be leaked accidentally. Other times, they’re kept secret right up until their release. Here are a few things to look out for if you want to discover new services before anyone outside the Googleplex has even heard about them:

2. Waiting for the new service to be released

Once a new service is discovered, everyone always wants to be the first to confirm a sighting and post exclusive screenshots. Here’s what you can do if you’re expecting a service to be released:

3. What to do once you find something new

When Corsin Camichel snooped around the Google servers, he accidentally hit on Google Platypus aka Gdrive (and took a screenshot, of course).

Even if you’ve not followed the previous steps, Google sometimes adds references and links to pages either accidentally or without announcing them. This is what you should do if you see something new:

And here endeth the lesson. Others will probably have their own ways of doing things and new methods will emerge all the time.

Of course, you could just try bribing a Googler or one of their ’Trusted Tester’ friends... [added: Just kidding!!]


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