Google Blogoscoped

Thursday, April 14, 2005

More Google AdSense Freedom?

For a while now I’ve been wishing I could completely customize Google ads – like font-sizes or width – and now there’s news which hint at progress in this department. Nathan Weinberg of InsideGoogle writes that “Google is testing open-format ads on AdSense, where the publisher can choose the number and size of the ads, as opposed to choosing from a ready made format.” The source for this statement is a blogger who wants to remain anonymous; apparently, Google is testing this feature secretly and participating bloggers had to sign Non-disclosure Agreements.

Yahoo News Redesign

Yahoo News went live with a Beta redesign, Gary Price reports.

FindForward RSS No More

For quite a while, I offered RSS feeds for search results at FindForward. In case you are using those, I would like to let you know I’m cancelling this service due to too much traffic caused by hourly polling of Bloglines and other RSS readers. I hope you enjoyed this service while it lasted, and in the meantime, other search engines like MSN provide RSS feeds as well.

To explain, the problem here was not really RSS, nor was it the FindForward search engine; it was the combination of search and RSS. That’s because usually, the hourly polling of Bloglines and others is helping to keep traffic down – thousands of Bloglines subscribers get the same file, so it’s effectively cached. Applied to personalized search results (people subscribe to searches on their own name, for example), this however means almost all of those thousand search RSS subscribers now have a different RSS feeds be polled every hour. This form of caching now greatly increases the traffic of the RSS feed provider. Knowing all that, this might have been the last “personalizd” RSS feed I’ll provide. It’s just a tough mixture for every server.


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