More than 1,100 communities across the U.S. have applied to take part in Google’s broadband fiber experiment, in which it will build a super-fast network to serve up to 500,000 people.

Some of the proposals got a little crazy — Topeka, Kansas renamed itself Google, Kansas for a time. Many towns delivered pitches through YouTube.

Todd Bishop of tech news site Tech Flash just published a list of the worst video pitches he could find.

Read more

Google has been famously protective of its super-secret search algorithm — that is, the computer code that translates our searches into relevant results we expect. But technology journalist Stephen Levy has gotten unprecedented access to the process Google employs to improve search. In Wired magazine he reports Google is set to make more than 500 changes to its search algorithm this year alone.

Read more

Google on Wednesday said it would build and test a super-fast, fiber-optic Internet service in a few communities, providing service to as many as 500,000 people.

The Sun-Star newspaper in Merced, California ran an editorial yesterday, trying to rally community support for a bid to get Google to build a fast network there.

Guests: Brandon Bowers, Merced Sun-Star; Stacey Higginbotham, GigaOm

Read more

Last week Google revealed its systems in China had been attacked. Evidence is mounting the attack originated in China, and was possibly directed by the government.

Google announced it would no longer censor search results as required by Beijing, and might pull out of the country altogether. We learned later that the attack hit more than 30 companies.

But none want to talk about it, or seem inclined to confront Beijing.

Read more