How to disable Google Talk Auto Update

If you every wondered how to disable Google Talk’s auto update feature, I found an easy way of doing this which, at least for now, seems to work.

Be sure to backup the registry entries before using the registry’s Export feature when standing on the Google Talk AutoUpdate key.

  1. Close Google Talk
  2. Open the registry (using regedit.exe)
  3. Go to My Machine\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Google\Google Talk\Autoupdate
  4. Change the value of UpdateURL to something in valid (or empty)
  5. Start Google Talk

That’s it.

Very simple and seems to work (at least for now).

Some more interesting speculation about Google’s future plans

I’ve just stumbled upon this, which seems to contain some very interesting speculations as to Google’s future plans.

They all strengthen my point about in my previous post that Gmail IDs are a Passport like system for authentication and they will be used throughout current and future services. They are already being used in most of Google’s personalization sites.

Another thing the link I started with talks about is the fact that Google Talk is also more about managing your contacts and you can see that the integration with Gmail and its Contacts into Google Talk also adds to the fact they it is heading to a more centralized authentication system.

I will not be surprised if they will join Project Liberty, or even worse, start their own initiative.

I don’t mind having a single authentication system but I don’t want it centralized in one place. I would rather have it decentralized like the DNS system or like Jabber and the XMPP specs are. Heck, even the fact that Linux is not controlled by a single vendor is one of the things that make it very compelling to a lot of organizations and people. The fact that you can switch between two distributions is very important to businesses as well as the fact that it generates a positive competition conditions that are all good for the customer.

Don’t forget that one of the few things that killed Microsoft’s Passport true vision and Microsoft’s Hailstorm project was the fact that no one wants to have all of its information stored in one vendor’s system and if Google are indeed going in that direction they will stumble upon the same issues that killed Microsoft’s projects.

IM Wars – And I’m not the only one thinking about it

It seems that there are more than a few people (well, at least 2) that have some other thoughts about Google.

I must admit that at first I was also inside the Google Talk frenzy, submersed in all the hype, but after reading Nuggest’s post and Drunken Batman’s post I started to ponder a bit about their thoughts and I must say that have some really good points.
Although Google Talk is still in v1.0 (or v0.1, depends on how you look at it) and it lacks a lot of the client features that its competitors have, we should also assume that their server software (even though based on the open XMPP standard that Jabber uses) is at v1.0 (or v0.1, as I said about the client).

Most people that only use one IM don’t know/want/take time to understand how Jabber server to server (S2S) works and how its similar to Email. Heck, I doubt most of them know how Email works, they just know that entering an Email address will usually get the message to that address.

This leads two a few things:
a) If people don’t know how Email works and they already know that entering an address will carry the message to its destination most of the time, using it in Google Talk shouldn’t be that much of a problem. So this means that either Google didn’t want to have S2S at the momet and wanted to test and establish Google Talk using their own user pool that they have in Gmail or Google is planning on doing so but still didn’t activate their servers to support it.

b) Using Email address can get users a bit confued. Why does my Email addres of can’t be used? I don’t care there is no Jabber server at I just want to put the Email address of my friend and use it, much the same I use my friend’s telephone number.
Since Google are very user scenario oriented I can only assume they didn’t want to confuse the users which found Gmail very slick and intuitve and didn’t expect anything else from Google, that can be a good enough reason not to do it.

Technology – My favorite part of any post ;-)
All of the above is without contemplating on the technology side, which has its own merits invovled but I would like to share with you some of my thoughts on that subject as well. NOTE: If you are not so technically literate you can safely skip this part.

Most of the Jabber servers I know (either commercial or open sourced) support an LDAP back-end of users. This means that if Google wanted to save a lot of development efforts they probably took an existing Jabber server implemenetation.

This means one of two things:

  1. Gmail’s backend authentication system is LDAP based or have an LDAP interface.
  2. Google had to break open the code of the Jabber server they used and implement the authentication part on top of their Gmail/Google Account authentication system.

If that is the case, Google could easily add S2S or it might even already be implemented in the Jabber server they use which makes Nuggest’s point even more serious. They have the technology but have disabled or excluded it.

The most annoying thing is that by using the Gmail account and limiting Google Talk to access only the Google Talk network, Google acted much the same as the company they just don’t want to be, Microsoft.

Microsoft did the same thing with Passport/Hotmail and MSN Messenger.

What happend to the “We are not evil!” motto? Declaring freedom of choice is not enough. Act must be made.

I’m calling everyone that reads this entry (all 5 of you ;-) ) to act now and make your voice heard. Email a nice a polite email to

Yell a bit so that everyone in Google Talk will hear us.

Google Talk – Let the IM revolution begin

I just installed Google Talk ( Its REALLY cool.
It’s a basic IM and its in Beta but the Voice has a really good quality.

I really liked the fact that they use an open standard, the Jabber/XMPP ( which is always good. This means that you can use any Jabber/XMPP supported client like iChat (for MacOS), GAIM (For Windows and Linux), etc.

Read their developer manifesto here, to see that they mean business and I do hope that they will use the built-in federation ability of the Jabber/XMPP protocol to federate messages to other IMs such as Yahoo, AIM/ICQ and MSN.

In addition to that, it seems they are also planning to take on VoIP to standard phone which means they will take on Skype and the rest.

Having a big, money full player in this market is a good thing for everyone and even more so if they are willing to open up everything and inter-connect to the other players.

This is a great day for SIP/VoIP/IM. Mark it in your calendar.


Have you ever worn a 37.25 USD T-Shirt?

UPDATE: It took a while, but Google eventually refunded me. See my post about that.

Apparently, I am going to be the “proud” owner of a 37.25 bucks Google Desktop T-Shirt.
The same T-Shirt I was suppose to get for free from Google and apparently, If you are outside of the USA they will ship it ONLY in UPS Express.

For god sake, can’t you just USPS it? Normal Air Mail?! it will cost like $7.
This is an amount of money that can be expected for a “FREE” T-Shirt.

Most of the T-Shirts in the GoogleStore cost ~12 dollars so shipping it in USPS will set you back around ~20 bucks. I thought Google have a LOT of money. I’m sure they could have taken the shipping costs on themselves.

The annoying thing is that I knew they might charge me for that (which is OK) but it never said in anywhere that I saw that it will be shipped in the MOST expensive way.

It better be from a fine material, not that scartchy cheap stuff they make most of the geek merchandising shirts of.

I’m pissed.

Goolge are not so bad after all!

The saga of the geeky Google Desktop T-Shirt continues

Do you remember my rant post about not being able to order my free Google Desktop T-Shirt that I got after submitting a Google Search API .NET Wrapper?

I’ve decided today that I’ll go to the GoogleStore again and try again.
I got in, enter the coupon code and it work. Oh what joy!

Expect to see me with my Geeky Google T-Shirt rollering around Tel Aviv on my newly bought K2 Exo 4.0 Rollerblades (I’m still a rollerblades virgin, so you’ll probably see me more on my ass than actually roller blading).

Google Maps API Finally Released
On another Google note, Google released their first version of the public API for Google Maps.
Now that’s something I’ve been waiting to see.

The only thing I find missing is the Search Ability they have in their own Maps site which enables you to write something like “Pizza Place, Washington D.C., USA” and get all Pizza places in Washington D.C..

They don’t expose it yet, but they do give a link to a query in Google for free geocoding sites that can give you geographic locations for streets and places.

I wonder if I can cook up a web site that will let you do a few things:

  1. Search for location using text queries (like “Pizza Place, Washington D.C., USA”) and show them on the map (similar to Google Maps)
  2. Let you add new places by marking them on the map, adding their address and some text to them and saving them to my database.
  3. Add a Web Service that will enable everyone to query my database.

What do you think?

My so called Google Desktop Search Plugin

If you remember, I talked in one of the previous posts about the Google Search API .NET Wrapper I wrote that includes a single coherent API for both Google Desktop Search (GDS) and Google Web Search (GWS)?

I submitted it to the Google Deskop Search Plugin program almost a month ago and I just got an Email saying that it got in. You can check it out here.

How lovely :-)

The Email said I get a Google Desktop Search T-Shirt for free, but when I entered the site and entered the coupon code it said that there are no more T-Shirts like that available. Bummer.

I Emailed them and hopefully I’ll get a response soon. I’ll keep you posted if I’ll actually get a T-Shirt out of this.

Another thing I got was $20 for AdWords. Haven’t used it before but it looks interesting. Perhaps I’ll publish my other blog, Advanced .NET Debugging, through it.

Google’s Search APIs

I’ve been messing around lately with Google’s Search APIs including the Google Desktop Search (GDS) and Google Web Search (GWS).

This is part of some experimentations I’m performing in regards to productivity and search engine/applications.

I’ve wrapped both GDS and GWS APIs in a nice .NET assembly (source code in C#). Both of them have the same interface and can generate the result as a .NET DataSet, as an XMLDocument and return the raw format that is being returns from both GDS (string) and GWS (their result structure).

I think its useful for people that wants to access both searches in the same API and integrate this into their applications.

So… here it is.

Click Here Download GoogleSearch assembly (both source and binary)

Enjoy and don’t forget to send feedback!