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Google Gets Together With Radiohead

Google and Radiohead have joined together to release a new music video for "House of Cards," a song from Radiohead's recent album, In Rainbows.
Google and Radiohead have joined together to release a new music video for "House of Cards," a song from Radiohead's recent album, In Rainbows.The result is geeky goodness: a haunting video created with lasers in lieu of cameras, downloadable data sets that the technically inclined can use to make their own version of the video, a behind-the-scenes clip about the making of the "House of Cards" video, an iGoogle gadget to play the video on one's homepage, and a Radiohead iGoogle theme.

Sure, this is the way music promotion works today. What artist wouldn't want to partner with Google?

But ignore the marketer hiding behind the curtain for a moment and take a look at the technology behind the video. It's just cool. And it demonstrates that Google's engineering culture still reigns.

Were Yahoo to do something of the sort, it would probably be a Jessica Simpson video. In other words, more flash than substance. On Yahoo's default home page, it was all about star wattage this afternoon: Brett Favre and Mariah Carey were pictured.

I wish it were otherwise, but Yahoo still hasn't shaken the influence of star-struck Terry Semel. With a few notable exceptions, like Yahoo Pipes, Yahoo has done little to court the technically inclined. Thankfully, that's starting to change with initiatives like Open Search, but Yahoo needs to defend itself against takeover and dismemberment before it can try to regain its geek cred.

In the meantime, be thankful for Google and its elitist pleasures.

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Samuel Greengard, Contributing Reporter
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Sara Peters, Editor-in-Chief, InformationWeek / Network Computing