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News In The Google v. Microsoft Saga

By Chris Gomez - Posted on 07 December 2009

While the Google v. Microsoft saga seems likely to stay a one-sided battle for the next few years, it still comes up with some of the most interesting news in cyberspace. I'm not a fan of Microsoft, but I do try not to be biased with their efforts in cleaning their tarnished image. Really, I do. Watch:

The (sorta) GOOD news - Microsoft and Yahoo finally close the deal

It's been several months since the Microsoft-Yahoo merger was suggested, but the two giants ultimately sealed the deal over the weekend. "Microhoo" (not its official name) will start finding ways to chisel away at Google's dominance in search, although it's likely we won't see Bing take over Yahoo search until late 2010.

The OK news - Google trounces Bing in Mashable.com poll

While the merger should heighten competition quite a bit and ultimately improve the search experience for everyone, it's clear that Microsoft and Yahoo have their work cut out from them. In the latest Mashable.com Faceoff poll, Google trounced Bing 78% to 19% (with 3% either way) when users were asked what the best search engine was.

Still, snagging almost one out of every five searchers isn't bad. After all, it's Google we're talking about here.

The BAD news - Google adds a dictionary feature

One of the niftiest Google tools is the "define: ___" feature, where you can get definitions for most terms you've never heard of before. Google very quietly upgraded the feature with its own dictionary. You can go to google.com/dictionary to get definitions for words in 28 languages.

That's another item on Bing's checklist.

The TERRIBLE news -- Bing goes down.

It was only for 30 minutes last weekend. But it was enough to whip up a small storm in the social media scene, with tortured cries permeating Twitter throughout the darkness. Actually, it was just an upgrade gone awry -- the guys at Bing immediately rolled things back, and users were able to use Bing again soon after.

Okay, so maybe I AM just a little biased. But I do know that things are starting to look up with Gates and company, especially with the... ahem... mostly-successful release of Windows 7. (According to another Mashable.com poll, slightly more users prefer Windows 7 over Apple's Snow Leopard OS). Let's hope the trend keeps up -- if only to expect stiffer resistance from Google.

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