Thursday, July 19, 2007

Yahoo-Microsoft and Google cookies with 2 year old milk

The San Jose Mercury News c/o Bloomberg News reports that Yahoo! is poised to be purchased per industry analysts...
The chance Yahoo will put itself up for sale has increased after the most-visited U.S. Web site lowered its revenue forecast, according to Stanford Group. Microsoft is a candidate to buy the company, analyst Clayton Moran said, reviving previous speculation.

Does that mean that all the ATT-Yahoo! email domains change to Hotmail after the merger? Gosh darn golly that would suck.

Google is also changing its cookie retention policy. Cookies are little bits of information stored on your computer when you visit a website. They allow sites to customize content for a user, help shopping cart technology remember your order, keep track of various credentials by uniquely identifying the user's point of contact, and other covert things that lull you into a dreamy complacent state of perception.

There have been some concerns surrounding privacy since the inception of cookies, but with the meteoric rise of the Googleplex PHENOMENAL COSMIC POWER folks have been clamoring that the search/ad giant stop becoming big brother. I don't think they really set out to be big's just that everything they offer and provide is web based, and customization at this point relies on retaining information about the using cookies.
Under the new policy, the cookies would expire automatically after two years, instead of in 2038 as is currently the case. However, the two-year period could get automatically extended when users revisit Google's search engine, so one might have to avoid Google for a full two years to see the cookie automatically expire.
This really doesn't address much in my opinion, because what about all those petabytes of server log data the Google farm stores? The best way to defeat cookies is to remove them from your machine. This process takes about 30 seconds to 3 mins in my humble estimation, depending on how active an internet user you are.

Running Microsoft? Here are the steps to delete cookies.
Mozilla Firefox? Bing!

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