Google News Has a New Look

Last Updated Aug 4, 2008 7:06 PM EDT

Google News has a new design that seems to be emphasizing personalization and visuals. Google seems to be experimenting with enhancing the user's ability to sort news via images, videos, quotes, and/or "most popular" categories.

The photos come mainly from AFP, AP, and Reuters. Google is relying on its related images algorithms to more closely tie photos and text versions of stories.

Over the past few months, I've begun to truly appreciate the breadth and depth of Google Images Search. After more than 200 searches, I have yet to find any subject in the news that the search giant cannot locate related images for. Furthermore, the degree of accuracy of the top photo match is extremely high -- over 99 percent.

This increasing capacity to mush different media forms into one interface is raising the standard online. I still can't figure out where Google News may be heading in the big picture, but they've sure nailed the thumbnail version!

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What would a Monday be without a few more headlines about job losses at newspapers?

The San Francisco Chronicle, which has been very badly battered in recent years, is cutting 125 more positions, initially through buyout offers. This comes on top 100 newsroom job cuts over the past year.

Meanwhile five newspapers will be combined into one in Idaho, as two daily newspapers and three weeklies are merged into The Times-News, which launches later this month. As a result, 11.4 percent of the current workforce will lose their jobs.

  • David Weir

    David Weir is a veteran journalist who has worked at Rolling Stone, California, Mother Jones, Business 2.0, SunDance, the Stanford Social Innovation Review, MyWire, 7x7, and the Center for Investigative Reporting, which he cofounded in 1977. He’s also been a content executive at KQED, Wired Digital, Salon.com, and Excite@Home. David has published hundreds of articles and three books,including "Raising Hell: How the Center for Investigative Reporting Gets Its Story," and has been teaching journalism for more than 20 years at U.C. Berkeley, San Francisco State University, and Stanford.