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Google+ AutoAwesome feature now creating year-in-review videos

Google+ AutoAwesome feature now creating year-in-review videos

As part of Google+'s AutoAwesome feature, users can get videos generated from their pictures and other similar features. Today, Google's Anil Sabharwal announced that as part of this, Google+ users are getting a "holiday gift": automatically-created year in review videos based on content uploaded to Google+ throughout 2013. The video will be auto-generated for any user who qualifies.

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U2 joins Google+, high-fives Vic Gundotra

U2 joins Google+, high-fives Vic Gundotra

You know the feeling you get when you walk past a Google executive and just casually say hello as you enter their social network for the first time? That's the feeling Bono-led U2 got this week as their presence on Google+ becomes news enough to cover in the ever-so-important cross-brand collaboration war between the social networks. Here U2 appears, and they appear official from the start.

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Twitter turnaround on block backlash highlights social shortcomings

Twitter turnaround on block backlash highlights social shortcomings

Twitter's decision to make an abrupt about-face on blocking policy after user outcry has highlighted little-understood shortcomings in how social services handle privacy and bullying, sending the 140-character message service back to the drawing board to refine its procedure. Twitter had thought it was improving the relatively blunt blocking process users were offered when it quietly changed the system on Thursday morning; by the evening, however, the company had been forced to restore the old approach, following criticisms that the amended tools in fact victimized those affected by bullying, rather than the bullies themselves. Meanwhile, the turnaround raises questions around the blocking and privacy tools other popular social networks offer their users.

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Google+ for Android turns your phone into a snowglobe

Google+ for Android turns your phone into a snowglobe

Google is adding a feature to the Android version of Google+ this month in their newest update that'll turn your device into a snowglobe. What you'll be able to do is open Google+, open a photo inside Google+, and shake to see snow. This is an addition to the Auto Awesome snowing feature shown off earlier this month in photos Google+ saw fit to have such fanciful flakes. These images appear as .GIF files and can be shared as such.

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Play Store app update rolling out with activity page, more social recommendations

Play Store app update rolling out with activity page, more social recommendations

The world is a social place, and the digital variety is no exception. Keeping pace with this, Google has announced a new update to the Play Store app that brings with it a couple different social elements achieved with Google Plus integration. The update is rolling out now, but will continue to do so for the next couple days, so those who aren't seeing it yet might have to wait a bit longer.

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Glass quietly adds personalized photo search

Glass quietly adds personalized photo search

Google's XE11 update for Glass may have added calendar and custom location support, but that's not the only personalized search that the wearable now offers. Glass can now search through Google photos with a custom speech search command, so for instance it's now possible to ask "OK Glass, Google my pictures for cats" and see all of the shots you've uploaded that have felines in them. The system also supports tagged people.

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YouTube makes Google+ commenting system live

YouTube makes Google+ commenting system live

Back in September, YouTube revealed that Google+ commenting would be integrated into the video service, something that would revamp the system to provide better conversations and incentive to converse. It has been a bit over a month, and the change has finally gone live, bringing with it not only more relevant comments, but the ability to better moderate conversations that take place on your own videos.

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