Search Marketing Expo (SMX) conference chaired by Danny Sullivan and Chris Sherman is always a good conference to gauge the Google ecosystem. It's conveniently located in Silicon Valley, just down 101 from the GooglePlex, Yahoo and Microsoft. Product managers from these companies are represented on the panels, and can be buttonholed for off-the-record conversations.
This year was no different from other years when I've covered the conference for Information Today. The major buzz