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Why I'm Sad That Google Is Killing Off Labs

Google has announced that it is “winding down” Labs, its system of introducing new features as experimental prototypes. While I don’t imagine that means the end of innovation from Google, it does mark an unfortunate change in the way we get to experience those innovations.

Download Map Area Stores Google Maps On Your Android Phone

Google Maps on your phone is a great way to navigate in unfamiliar areas, but what happens if there’s no signal? A new Google Maps Lab feature lets you download maps within 10 miles (how very imperial) of any location listed on a place page, ensuring you have basic details even when your phone can’t connect.

6 Great Experimental Features To Enable In Google Chrome's Labs

Google Chrome is a favourite among power users in no small part due to its innovative experimental features (many of which are eventually integrated into the stable browser). For our final instalment of the best of Google Labs, we’re taking a look at the best experimental, advanced features you can add to Google Chrome.

5 Experimental Features You Should Enable From The Google Maps Laboratory

Perhaps you haven’t noticed, but we’ve been highlighting the best of Google Labs all week. Today we’re taking a look at five great experimental features you can enable in Google Maps that solve a few annoying problems and make using the service easier, too.

Chrome's About:Labs Page Lists Experimental Features

It used to be that with Chrome, you could only enable experimental features (like moving tabs to the side) by manually adding flags to the shortcut. Now, dev build users can enable them from the new about:labs page.

Google Maps Adds Built-In URL Shortening

Sending someone a Google Maps URL can be a pain, because they tend to be very long. To remedy this, Google has integrated their previously mentioned URL shortening service into Google Maps, so you can shorten links right from the map.

Create HTML Signatures With Images Right Inside Gmail

newVideoPlayer( {"type":"video","player":"","customParams":[] ,"width":570,"height":412,"ratio":0.824,"flashData":"","embedName":null,"objectId":null,"noEmbed":false,"source":"youtube"} );

Thanks to some handy tricks in the Google Labs bag you can easily add an HTML signature complete with images and save it for future use without plugins or outside help.

When It Doesn't Pay To Be Google's Guinea Pig

Besides a killer algorithm and brand-name recognition, Google’s greatest strength is its speed at releasing new products. We get to play with new, cool and ever-improving tools for free. Recently, though, we’ve seen that being unwitting lab subjects can kind of stink.

Google Squared Goes Live, Formats Searches Into Spreadsheet

Google Labs today released Google Squared, which, according to the search giant, “constructs a table of facts about any search category you specify”—though some searches produce distinctly better results than others.

Google Lively Bites The Dust

Well, that was quick. Google has killed off Lively, the 3D avatar environment it launched with some fanfare back in June. The service will be switched off by the end of the year, a post on Google’s blog confirmed. It’s useful proof that even the Google branding can’t make a 3-legged dog — which is how most 3D online environments still come across — an attractive proposition.

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