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Photos: Google's Down Under Developer Day

Google's Developer Day 2007 conference kicked off globally in Sydney this morning and ZDNet Australia went along to record all things Google.
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By Luke Anderson on
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1 of 25 Luke Anderson/ZDNet Australia

The Sydney event was held at Australian Technology Park, in Sydney.

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2 of 25 Luke Anderson/ZDNet Australia

Australia was the first of 10 Google Developer Day 2007 events scheduled for today around the globe. Other locations include San Jose, Sao Paulo, London, Paris, Madrid, Hamburg, Moscow, Tokyo and Beijing.

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3 of 25 Luke Anderson/ZDNet Australia

Google Australia's engineering director Alan Noble took the stage for the opening keynote address. Noble, who recently joined the company, gave an overview of Google's development history and highlighted the growth of Gadgets. In addition, he announced two new products, Mapplets and Google Gears.

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4 of 25 Luke Anderson/ZDNet Australia

Google Gears is an open source platform that promises to allows online properties -- such as Gmail and any other Web application -- to be used offline.

In an interview with ZDNet Australia, yesterday, Noble explained that "Gears is open source so any developer developing Web applications will be able to use Google Gears to take their own applications and make them work offline as well. Developers have to program to the Google Gears API, so there is some work involved in doing that."

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5 of 25 Luke Anderson/ZDNet Australia

Google Gears, while still in beta form, is available as an extension for Internet Explorer (version 6+), FireFox 1.5+ (Windows, Mac and Linux) and (soon) Safari.

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Developers can download a beta copy from Google Gears Web page: gears.google.com

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Noble went through the history of Google's development platform, starting with the launch of its search API in 2002, through to Gadgets in 2005, a range in 2006 and Mapplets and Gears in 2007.

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Noble highlighted the growth and innovative use of Gadgets, such as this one from Expedia which can download flight prices from Seattle to Chicago.

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The Pacman Gadget alone, according to Noble, received 7 million page views during last week.

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Mapplets are described by Google as "mini-applications that you can embed within the Google Maps site". This example, a special developer preview, displays cinemas screening Pirates of the Caribbean in the New York area.

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11 of 25 Luke Anderson/ZDNet Australia

To watch Noble's full interview with ZDNet Australia, click here.

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Following on from Noble was Aaron Boodman, who helped develop AJAX and Greasemonkey, a browser extension to mashup Web sites with JavaScript. Boodman is one of the creators of Google Gears and discussed some of its key features.

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13 of 25 Luke Anderson/ZDNet Australia

The plug-in will be around 500K in size and include an SQLite database as a backend. Developers will interact with it using SQL and Javascript and was described by Carl Sjogreen, senior product manager for Google as "a really, big cookie with a SQL interface that you can access from Javascript".

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14 of 25 Luke Anderson/ZDNet Australia

The event was hosted by James O'Loghlin from the ABC show The New Inventors.

O'Loghlin, drawing comparisons between developers and tuning cars, described those in the room as the "computer hoons of the new century".

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Apparently "the guy" from Google Maps was supposed to make a presentation this morning, but he got lost on the way, O'Loughlin joked.

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16 of 25 Luke Anderson/ZDNet Australia

The completely booked out Sydney event saw 700 attendees -- the second largest location for its 2007 Developer Day.

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Attendees has a string of sessions throughout the day, covering topics including AJAX, mashups, APIs for Google Maps, Gadgets, Goggle Web Toolkit and GData, a "common mechanism for accessing a myriad of Google services".

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Google's building blocks of Web development.

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The Australian Technology Park occupies the site of the former Eveleigh railway yards, in inner-city Sydney. Google's event was in "Bay 16", a refurbished locomotive Workshop.

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20 of 25 Luke Anderson/ZDNet Australia

The Blogger's Lounge was set up with lots of comfy beanbags, medicine balls, funky backlit displays and Wi-Fi access.

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These beanbags continue Google's trend to brand everything ... and we want one!

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In true Google fashion, a plasma in the main hall showed the latest search terms in real-time (presumably sans-offensive terms).

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Guests were encouraged to log on to the official chatroom -- irc.freenode.net #googledeveloperday -- to discuss all things Google.

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24 of 25 Luke Anderson/ZDNet Australia

Attendees got a Google swag, complete with branded lanyard, pen, stickers and notepad complete with Google Earth lenticular cover!

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Google's own photo gallery (on Picasa, naturally) can be found at http://picasaweb.google.com/developerday/GoogleDeveloperDaySydneyAustralia.

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