Make free calls in the U.S. and Canada from your Gmail account.
Do you use Gmail to make phone calls? Did you even know that feature existed? Either way, Google is extending the free calling feature for Gmail users in the U.S. and Canada for at least another year. The "Call phones from Gmail" service launched in 2010, allowing users to make and receive free domestic calls (and low rates for other countries) right from within Gmail.
Even the Zuckerbergs aren't immune to Facebook's murky privacy controls.
Facebook co-founder and billionaire whiz-kid Mark Zuckerberg may think that everything's all hunky-dory with his social networking site, but his sister Randi might have a different opinion. A former marketing director at Facebook, Randi posted a picture to her Facebook Timeline of her family reacting to a new "poke" application. A friend saw the photo of the semi-private moment and, much to Randi's dismay, posted it to Twitter.
Don't look now, but 64-bit Firefox nightlies are set to return.
Mozilla in November made the decision to pull the plug on 64-bit Firefox for Windows, disabling 64-bit nightlies because of a lack of resources required to make it worthwhile. What Mozilla didn't anticipate was that there would be "significant negative feedback" from the online community, and because of that, the open source browser maker said it's willing to make a compromise.
In terms of market share, Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome have been trading blows, angling for the coveted second place title all year. Firefox has continued to decline, but loses on all sides are leveling out, and Chrome isn’t seeing the huge gains it once did. This has given Mozilla the confidence they need going into 2013. Vice President of Engineering Johnathan Nightingale shared his own opinion on what they got right, and which of the company's many new initiatives have been resonating well with the Firefox community.
1.4 trillion searches can't all be wrong, can they?
Whitney Houston's untimely demise in February of this year led to her being the most searched term on Google in all of 2012, followed by "Gangnam Style," which ranked No. 2 and is on pace to hit an unprecedented 1 billion views on YouTube. With 1.2 trillion searches in 146 languages throughout the year, Google gives arguably the best glimpse of what's trending around the world.
Some still contend that Google+ is a ghost town, a social playground largely devoid of active participants. Others, like Google's Senior Vice President Vic Gundotra, see Google+ as "the fastest-growing network thingy ever." Backing up his claim with numbers, Gundotra claims Google+ is home to 500 million people overall and 235 million active users who are +1ing apps, hanging out in Gmail, and connecting with friends in search. Some 135 million are active in just the stream, Vundotra says.
It's cold outside, your local grocery store is stocked with eggnog, and the mall is a madhouse. It can mean only one thing -- the holidays are coming! That also means you're running out time to finish buying gifts for family and friends, but what do you do if you're stuck on what to get that special geek in your life? What if you ARE that special geek? Don't sweat it, whether you're looking for gnarly gift ideas for someone else or want to treat yourself to something nice before embarking on a new year, we have you covered with a robust selection of gadgets, games, and toys guaranteed to delight whoever receives them in our Geek's Holiday Gift Guide 2012. From Google Play gift cards to a severed Wampa arm fashioned into an ice scraper mitt, we have suggestions for all levels of geek!
To make things easier for you, we're separating our gift suggestions into handy categories, though we highly recommend browsing each of the galleries. You never know what you'll find until you click through! Hit the jump to get started.
Google is inviting Gmail users to try out a new way to compose and reply to messages in Gmail. The redesigned compose window appears as a pop-up window inside the inbox rather than a dedicated, full-size window. It's a subtle change, but is big on convenience in that you can compose new messages while still surfing your inbox folders. It's essentially a larger size chat window.
The launch of Windows 8 last week also marked the official release of Internet Explorer 10, which ships with the new OS (Windows 7 users can download a release preview, or hang tight until November for a finished build). Microsoft thinks IE10 is the best browser on the planet, and while Mozilla might disagree with such a claim, animosity doesn't run high between the two companies. Just the opposite, actually. In fact, Mozilla sent Microsoft a cake for shipping IE10.
Look, we're not trying to spark a religious debate here, and if Jesus is your co-pilot, that's wonderful. But turning to 'Jesus' to secure your logins is about as ineffective as protecting your accounts with 'Ninja', which also appears on SplashData's "Worst Passwords of 2012." The self-explanatory list contains five new entries, two of which we just mentioned. What about the rest? Let's have a look.