This Google Cloud post came up on my LinkedIn feed, and I thought it deserved a special mention:
Leveraging Google Maps To Comparison Shop Between Travel Sites
Need to book a hotel room, but you’re looking for a good deal? Google Maps has you covered. This post is if you already have a particular hotel picked out.
As an example, I’m going to pick the Contemporary Resort in Orlando, Florida. First, go to Google Maps and type in contemporary resort. Select the Contemporary located in Orlando, FL.
After searching, you’ll see a screen similar to the below:
On the left hand side, there are advertisements (note the small Ad disclaimer in the middle of the screen) where Expedia and other trip planning sites offer deals for the hotel. You can comparison shop between providers – KAYAK is offering rooms for $492, but Expedia is offering for $488 (see purple arrow). The dates of the hotel stay can be changed as well, see the red arrow for the date pickers.
Keep your eye out for similar ads and deals in Google Maps – I frequently see travel deals being offered.
Why I Love NewsBlur – Folder RSS
After the closure of Google Reader – which I was a big fan of – I moved all of my RSS feeds to NewsBlur. One of the reasons I moved to NewsBlur is that it has a full API and is very easy to interface with!
For instance, folder feeds are available and don’t require authentication, making it easy for an app to merge multiple RSS feeds and treat them as one. For example: in NewsBlur, I’ve created a folder called economy and set up multiple feeds (New York Times, Forbes, Washington Post Business) underneath that folder, like so:
Right clicking the folder name and clicking folder settings pops up the folder settings tab. The URLs listed in the Feed Address section return a RSS list with all of the items from the feeds combined into a single feed. Even better: the URL supplied doesn’t require authentication, so an application can read it instead of having to poll 5 separate RSS feeds.
Disney Waiting Page
I like to collect examples of error pages, but this is slightly different. When I was browsing Disney.com, I was shown the below page asking me to wait until the request could be completed.
Notice the stylized Space Mountain image in the middle, which helps to customize and personalize the page to the Disney branding. This is a good page to use as a template if you need to build a similar long-waiting page.
Missing Logs – Google Logs Viewer
I opened a new GCP project to host a Python application when I hit a problem – my logging.info() and logging.warn() statements weren’t showing up in my logs. Then I realized the standard error and standard out streams weren’t selected in logging!
If you’re missing log information, make sure to select the correct streams in the second dropdown box, as in below:
FastCompany: A Chrome Addon To Fix Gmail
FastCompany profiles a new Chrome plugin in this article published today: https://www.fastcompany.com/90338929/the-former-lead-designer-of-gmail-just-fixed-gmail-on-his-own . The plugin greatly simplifies Gmail’s interface – and it’s made by the same person who wrote Inbox.
I loved using Inbox, and I see the same design sensibilities from Inbox in this plugin: a focus on the email instead of wasting screen real estate on navigation bars and miscellany.
Finding Work From Home Jobs With Google
I saw this interesting TechCrunch article about Google making it easier to find work-from-home jobs:
I love working from home – it’s great that Google is making it easier to search for remote-friendly positions.
SEO: Images Are Important Too
Search Engine Land posted an insightful article today: Apparently Google is featuring images more often in its search results than in the past: https://searchengineland.com/google-starts-showing-more-images-in-the-web-search-results-315804 .
For example: search Google for a keyword, and if Google decides you might be interested in an image search, it’ll show an image bar within the search page. Now this images bar has always existed, but the Search Engine Land article indicates that this bar is becoming more frequent/being added to more searches. Here’s a demonstration:
With this new emphasis on images, it’s important to properly SEO images on your website. Make sure to fill out the ALT attribute on the IMG HTML tag, and have a caption explaining the image. Use a high quality image if available.
pysnooper: A Fun Python Debugger`
I saw this fun tool on YC News called pysnooper: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=19717786 . I’ve been trying it out all day on various Python applications, and it’s actually making debugging fun and a whole lot easier!
Google Shoppable Ads – Competition For Pinterest
In light of Pinterest’s recent IPO, I wanted to point out an article from Mobile Marketer: https://www.mobilemarketer.com/news/google-pushes-deeper-into-visual-search-with-shoppable-ads-in-images/549957/ .
Monetizing Pinterest will largely come down to showing relevant ads within user searches – for example, showing an ad for wedding supplies within an user search for wedding ideas. However, we see Google moving into this business as well, as highlighted in the above article. Google will be showing more ads within Google Images searches – but more importantly – those ads will be image based, which should help clickthrough and purchase rates.
I fully expect Pinterest to thrive and grow, but we’ll be seeing a fair bit of competition from Google and others as well.