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Thomas Ciszek
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The New +Google+ is here (repeat 3x)
Dive into the new Google+
As +Eddie Kessler shared this afternoon (goo.gl/2QjBGx), we’ve spent lots of time talking to people who are passionate about Google+. We visited them in their homes, we invited them into early testing communities and we learned more about how and why they use Google+. The predominant answer? Having a great place to keep up with and talk about their interests. From Astrophotography (goo.gl/HRQmIh) to Wild Hummingbirds (goo.gl/6FscI6), people are not only discovering amazing things, but meeting others who share their passions as well.

Today we’re taking a big step toward making Google+ an even better place for your interests. To do so, we’ve drastically simplified nearly every aspect of the product. You’ll see this clearly in our new navigation centered around Collections and Communities. Collections let you immerse yourself in content about topics like surfing (goo.gl/vvv5QD) or tiny tilt-shift photography scenes (goo.gl/nWyicL) . Communities enable groups of people with the same interests to join up and geek out on anything from Game of Thrones (goo.gl/aaqtgq) to Painting (goo.gl/kmlM7m). With Collections and Communities, discovering amazing things is simple: just follow or join whatever happens to pique your interests.

But we didn’t stop with Collections and Communities; the new Google+ also makes it easier to post, search, connect, and keep up with great content in a fully redesigned home stream. And we’ve worked hard to make our new web experience load fast and work beautifully on devices of all sizes.

You can preview the new Google+ on the web today by signing in and clicking “Let’s go” when you see the prompt. (And since not every feature of Google+ has made its way into this new design, for now, you can toggle back to the classic Google+ with one click in the bottom left-hand corner.) In the coming days, we’ll roll out updated apps for Android and iOS.

While this is an exciting new beginning for us, we’re definitely not done yet. We got here by listening and learning, and will continue doing so. Please visit our Help Center (goo.gl/gWsFeh) or drop us a line in our support community (goo.gl/eMFVj) to share your thoughts, questions, and more. 
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Well, it's been a while, but  #search  mysteries persist.

Here's the latest on +Wikipedia search traffic from +Barry Schwartz.

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Destroy your phone often?
Found one that can't be destroyed from +Sonim Technologies.
#Android   #androidlollipop   #goextreme  

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How bizarre
When we launched Google+ over three years ago, we had a lot of restrictions on what name you could use on your profile. This helped create a community made up of real people, but it also excluded a number of people who wanted to be part of it without using their real names. 

Over the years, as Google+ grew and its community became established, we steadily opened up this policy, from allowing +Page owners to use any name of their choosing to letting YouTube users bring their usernames into Google+. Today, we are taking the last step: there are no more restrictions on what name you can use. 

We know you've been calling for this change for a while. We know that our names policy has been unclear, and this has led to some unnecessarily difficult experiences for some of our users. For this we apologize, and we hope that today's change is a step toward making Google+ the welcoming and inclusive place that we want it to be. Thank you for expressing your opinions so passionately, and thanks for continuing to make Google+ the thoughtful community that it is.

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Long time coming.

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One of our balloons has had quite a journey over the past few weeks. It did a lap around the world in 22 days, and has just clocked the project’s 500,000th kilometer as it begins its second lap. It enjoyed a few loop-de-loops over the Pacific ocean before heading east on the winds toward Chile and Argentina, and then made its way back around near Australia and New Zealand. Along the way, it caught a ride on the Roaring Forties — strong west-to-east winds in the southern hemisphere that act like an autobahn in the sky, where our balloons can quickly zoom over oceans to get to where people actually need them.

Traversing the stratosphere is particularly challenging this time of year because the winds actually change direction as the southern hemisphere moves from warmer to colder weather, resulting in divergent wind paths that are hard to predict. Since last June, we’ve been using the wind data we’ve collected during flights to refine our prediction models and are now able to forecast balloon trajectories twice as far in advance. In addition, the pump that moves air in or out of the balloon has become three times more efficient, making it possible to change altitudes more rapidly to quickly catch winds going in different directions. There were times, for example, when this balloon could have been pulled into the polar vortex – large, powerful wind currents that whip around in a circle near the stratosphere in the polar region – but these improvements enabled us to maneuver around it and stay on course. We can spend hours and hours running computer simulations, but nothing teaches us as much as actually sending the balloons up into the stratosphere during all four seasons of the year.

Take a look through our photo album to see some of the specific improvements that have been made to the balloon technology, thanks to the lessons we’ve learned in flight.
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500,000 Kilometers in Flight
5 Photos - View album

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Preparing some new views of +Cojoin (local) or +Cojoin (global) products. Drop a note if you need to process, combine and visualize data and want to do it without all the fuss: https://cojoin.com/
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And the March winner is... +GoPro (their +Vimeo channel's not bad either).
There are so many great +YouTube brand channels, but only 10 can make our Brand Channel Leaderboard. See which popular channels inspired passion among their subscribers.
http://goo.gl/sKHjbQ
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Note the #dance  research. More arms, less hips.
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