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Google Adopts, Forks OpenID 1.0 316

An anonymous reader writes "Right on the heels of Microsoft's adoption of the OpenID protocol by announcing their intention to enable OpenID authentication against all Live IDs, Google has announced their intention to join the growing list of OpenID authentication providers. Except it turns out they're using their own version of OpenID that is incompatible with everyone else. It seems that Google will be using their own 'improved' version of OpenID (based upon research and user feedback of the OpenID system) which isn't backwards compatible with OpenID 1.0/2.0, in hopes of improving end-user experience at the cost of protocol compatibility and complexity."

Google Sought To Hide Political Dealmaking 283

A blog entry by Michael Kanellos at ZDNet links to and expands upon an article in the Charlotte Observer. Last year Google was apparently throwing its weight around in North Carolina, seeking tax breaks from state and local legislators. When the company didn't get what it wanted pressure was brought to bear on legislative aides, journalists, and politicians. The search giant was especially touchy about keeping the negotiations secret: "Executives didn't want anybody even to mention the company's name for fear that competitors could learn of its plans. Most involved with the negotiations were required to sign nondisclosure agreements ... That posed challenges for elected officials, charged with conducting the public's business in the open. As the tax measure wended its way through the legislature, some lawmakers began linking it to Google." The results of this deal are extremely lucrative for both sides. Google brought some $600 million in investment and as many as 200 jobs to the state, and legislation enacted with Google's help is projected to save the company some $89 million in taxes over 30 years.

Google Deprecates SOAP API 240

Michi writes "Brady Forrest at O'Reilly Radar reports that Google has deprecated their SOAP API; they aren't giving out any new SOAP Search API keys. Nelson Minar (the original author of the Google SOAP API) argues that this move is motivated by business reasons rather than technical ones. Does this mark the beginning of the end for SOAP or for ubiquitous middleware in general?" Forrest's post quotes developer Paul Bausch: "This is such a bad move because the Google API was the canonical example of how web services work. Not only is Google Hacks based on this API, but hundreds of other books and online examples use the Google API to show how to incorporate content from another site into a 3rd party application."

Google Patents the Design of Search Results Page 114

prostoalex writes "ZDNet is reporting that USPTO issued a patent to Google, Inc. for 'ornamental design for a graphical user interface'. This is not, as ZDNet points out, a software patent (which is usually issued as a utility patent), but a design patent, which governs the look and feel of the product and prevents others from directly copying it." Ironic, given Google's recent slip-up of copying a Yahoo page. In news on the flipside, Google has launched a patent search service (in beta).

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