Mac OS X Lion Stories May 2, 2012

Microsoft’s search engine Bing unveiled a new look today, and, well, it looks strikingly like Google’s homepage user-interface.

“Starting today you will notice a fresh, de-cluttered experience designed to help you find the results you want faster,” announced Principal Group Program Manager Sally Salas on the Bing.com blog.

Bing stripped the gray-blue gradient, orange links, left sidebar, and the convolute of text and imagery from its website to reveal a simple, white background adorned with crisp, blue text.

“Over the past few months, we’ve run dozens of experiments to determine how you read our pages to deliver the link you’re looking for. Based on that feedback, we’ve tuned the site to make the entire page easier to scan, removing unnecessary distractions, and making the overall experience more predictable and useful,” Salas explained.

The obvious rip-off appears hypocritical, though, especially because the company often takes shots at Google for stealing its ideas. Microsoft Europe’s communication team used Twitter in 2010 to poke fun of Google’s ability to implement background images, which is popular feature that characterized Bing since it launched in 2009.

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It’s no secret that Google is fully cloud-compatible, from emails and documents to online storage and video chats, but now the search engine is boasting about its array of cloud-based tools in a new campaign that encourages folks to go Google.

“At the heart of it, Google is about cloud computing—helping people live online and get things done in the cloud,” explained Vice President of Engineering Venkat Panchapakesan on the Official Google Blog:

According to Panchapakesan, over 16 million students and teachers from 66 of the top 100 U.S. universities and more than 4 million businesses worldwide have gone Google through Google Apps:

“Whether you need to add ‘milk’ to a shared shopping list from the train, collaborate with your teammate back in the office to finish your presentation from a hotel lobby, or chat face-to-face with your mom from halfway around the world, we believe that getting stuff done in the cloud is a better way. We like to call it ‘going Google.'”

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