Not in the clamor of the crowded street, not in the shouts and plaudits of the throng, but in ourselves, are triumph and defeat.--Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

REDIRECT ALERT! (Scroll down past this mess if you're trying to read an archived post. Thanks. No, really, thanks.)

Due to my inability to control my temper and complacently accept continued silliness with not-quite-as-reliable-as-it-ought-to-be Blogger/Blogspot, your beloved Possumblog will now waddle across the Information Dirt Road and park its prehensile tail at http://possumblog.mu.nu.

This site will remain in place as a backup in case Munuvia gets hit by a bus or something, but I don't think they have as much trouble with this as some places do. ::cough::blogspot::cough:: So click here and adjust your links. I apologize for the inconvenience, but it's one of those things.

Thursday, April 01, 2004

Maybe I'll have to call him Chet the Gmail Boy...

Google to Offer Users Free E-Mail Service

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. - Google Inc. is introducing a free e-mail service to send a blunt message — the maker of the world's most popular online search engine is pulling off the gloves in its clash with high-tech heavyweights Yahoo! Inc. and Microsoft Inc.

The company unleashed the latest blow in a fierce fight for Web supremacy late Wednesday by promising to deliver 250 to 500 times more storage space than the market-leading e-mail services provided by Yahoo and Microsoft's Hotmail.

But there's a catch to the e-mail. Hoping to turn a profit from the service — dubbed Gmail — privately held Google has programmed its computers to dissect the topics being discussed in the e-mails and then deliver text-based ads related to the subjects.

For instance, an e-mail from one friend to another discussing an upcoming concert might prompt Google to include an advertising link from a ticketing agency.

"I don't think (the ads) will be annoying at all," Google co-founder Larry Page said during an interview Wednesday. "We think this will give us a business model that will work and allow us to provide a high-quality service."

Page said Gmail shouldn't raise serious privacy concerns because Google plans to closely guard the content of the e-mail messages. Ads are unlikely to accompany most e-mails, he said.

Gmail will offer 1 gigabyte of storage space, roughly 500,000 pages of e-mail. Gmail users will be able to receive up to 10 megabytes in a single e-mail — more than the free services of Yahoo and Microsoft's Hotmail allow to be stored in an entire mailbox. [...]

Sign me up. I have an old Yahoo account from back when they gave you 6Mb, and it stays close to capacity. Then again, part of the problem is that I refuse to clean out old messages--but I like to keep them.

As for the ads, well, I really don't care--Yahoo is already so chock full of ads that I have ceased to notice them.

Party on, Chet.

UPDATE: As sugarmama notes in the comments, this could be a prank by those wascally Googleers, but maybe not--there is this from Reuters: Google says "Gmail" is no joke

[...] Google's announcement was questioned because of the U.S. No. 1 search service's unconventional sub-heading on a press release and because it also posted a fictional job listing seeking engineers for a "Google Copernicus Hosting Environment and Experiment in Search Engineering (GCHEESE)" lunar outpost.

Google's free e-mail service called Gmail, which will offer significantly more storage than Yahoo or MSN, "is not a hoax," said Jonathan Rosenberg, Google's vice president of products.

Google's unconventional March 31 press release announcing Gmail helped set Internet message boards alight because the sub-heading read: "Search is Number Two Online Activity -- Email is Number One: 'Heck, Yeah,' Say Google Founders."

"It is April Fool's Day. We were having fun with this announcement. We are very serious about Gmail," Rosenberg said in an interview. [...]

As you know, Reuters is a "news" service ::snicker:: so anything they print HAS to be accurateBWAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHA!!!


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