Google to help Fairfax go digital

google-signGoogle has used today’s opening of its new Australian headquarters by Governor General Quentin Bryce to announce plans to digitise back copies of the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age and the addition of new local public transport information to Google Maps.  

Around 350 staff will be based at the new Pyrmont offices. Bryce told them: ” I thank you for your outstanding contribution to Australia’s economy, culture and progress.”        

google-bryce-temsamaniTo coincide with the move, Google announced that it is working with its new neighbour Fairfax Media to digitise archival copies of its newspapers, including the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age, dating back more than a century. The papers will be available via Google.  

Lisa Hagenmaier, group syndication manager, Fairfax Media, said: “The project to digitise and make searchable our archived content will help people to more easily experience and appreciate our journalistic heritage – letting them see newspapers exactly as they were first printed, with original headlines and images.”  

Google also announced that public transit information for Sydney’s light rail and monorail network and Canberra’s bus network would be available in Google Maps later in June. It follows a similar project in Perth. However, there is no sign as yet of a similar breakthrough for Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane’s main public transport services.

Karim Temsamani, GM of Google Australia and New Zealand, reminded the gathering of how Google Australia started in 2002 with a single employee selling AdWords from her lounge.

And Google Australia’s Head of Engineering, Alan Noble added: “There’s phenomenal computer science talent in Australia, so we’re investing in the ecosystem here.”


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