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1:50 PM ET, October 21, 2007


 Top Items: 
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Powerset Testing Search Results At Mechanical Turk  —  A reader noticed that stealth search engine Powerset is using Amazon's Mechanical Turk service to gauge user reactions to search results.  —  See the screen shot (click for larger view) - users are shown a query and a number of results …
Discussion: Insider Chatter and UMBC ebiquity
Bharat Mediratta / New York Times:
The Google Way: Give Engineers Room  —  GOOGLE engineers are encouraged to take 20 percent of their time to work on something company-related that interests them personally.  This means that if you have a great idea, you always have time to run with it.  —  It sounds obvious …
Times of London:
Google.  Who's looking at you?  —  It wants to know everything about you.  It wants to be your best friend — or your Big Brother.  Are your secrets safe with Google?  —  John Arlidge  —  In the blissed-out California sunshine, the glistening glass-and-steel curves of the Googleplex seem …
Nick / Rough Type:
The business case for TimesSelect  —  Last month, the New York Times discontinued TimesSelect, the program that required readers to pay a subscription fee to read popular columnists and access the paper's archives.  The news was greeted with whoops and hollers from the members of the web's hallelujah chorus …
Tim Harford / The Undercover Economist:
Undercover Economist column: Did you pay to read this?  —  Until recently, there were two types of newspaper website: those that made you pay to read many of the articles (The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and the Financial Times) and those that didn't.  —  That is changing.
Todd Cochrane / Geek News Central:
Why Tech Blogging is Broken  —  Last night I attended a book launch party here in Honolulu.  At that party I met a marketing person from a SEO startup who told me a little about what they were doing in the search optimization space.  I found it very intriguing and as competition is very tough …
Nick / Rough Type:
For Wal-Mart, too, IT is a commodity  —  "I never viewed computers as anything more than necessary overhead," Sam Walton once said.  Nevertheless, after I wrote "IT Doesn't Matter" back in 2003, critics would routinely present Wal-Mart as the killer counter example to my argument …
Howard Owens:
The culture of infallibility inhibits newspaper innovation  —  Yesterday at the closing panel of the Online News Association conference, Anil Dash and Josh Cohn of Google talked about the newspaper industry's failure to embrace change.  —  Anil made this astute observation, "Journalism is the culture of infallibility."
Susan Crawford blog:
Comcast Is Pretending to be You  —  This AP story makes clear that Comcast is pretending to be part of online conversations in order to frustrate users who want to use particular online applications.  This happens all the time in the name of "traffic shaping" — it's the kind of thing that China does to interfere with internet use.
Akhil Wable / Facebook Developers News Feed:
More Distribution and Visibility  —  In an effort to continue providing new ways to distribute your applications, we're making the Application Directory and app "about" pages available to people who are not logged in.  We are also enabling these pages to be indexed by search engines like Google …
Geeked Info:
Google turns out the lights  —  On Saturday, October 20, 2007, San Francisco will go black for one hour (8pm-9pm PST) as it participates in "Lights Out San Francisco".  In addition, the citizens of SF are encouraged to install at least one compact fluorexcent light bulb to help reduce their energy consumption.
Dan Moren / Macworld:
The Apple we know and love  —  In the past few months, you've heard the whispers—that Apple has lost its way, that it was on the road to becoming that most terrible of things—the new Microsoft.  Issues like charging for ringtones and bricking unlocked iPhones have got people talking, if by "talking" you mean typing WITH CAPS LOCK ON.
Judith Chevalier / New York Times:
In Search of Wireless Wiggle Room  —  I RECENTLY watched a YouTube clip of a young man removing the memory chip from his iPhone with his teeth, in an attempt to "unlock" the device for use on a network other than the AT&T system for which the phone was exclusively sold.
Discussion: Slashdot
Mobility Site:
New betas of Mobipocket Reader available  —  Mobipocket has a new Beta of the Mobipocket Reader 6.0 for Blackberry.  This new beta version is available on Mobipocket's beta pages or you can download it directly with your Blackberry browser from their mobile website (
Discussion: TeleRead and PalmAddicts
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CareerArc: How Square's Debut Draws Concerns Over IPO “Ratchets” & Impact on Tech Talent  —  Square's IPO points a spotlight on “IPO Ratchets”—now a common demand among tech investors.  But how might ratchets affect employees?
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 More Items: 
David Richards / Smarthouse:
Toshiba Working With Microsoft On New Entertainment Xbox
Mark Boslet / Mercury News:
UN telecom panel endorses Intel's WiMax technology
Discussion: DSLreports
Terry Heaton / Terry Heaton's PoMo Blog:
Chris Pirillo:
Christmas Music Parody - Blue Vista
Discussion: jkOnTheRun and WinExtra
Duncan Riley / TechCrunch:
CSI:NY Comes To Second Life Wednesday
 Earlier Items: 
Katie Allen / Guardian:
Major pirate website shut down
Mike Masnick / Techdirt:
Don't Click On This Link Unless You Don't Mind A Grand Jury Knowing What You Read
Richard MacManus / Read/WriteWeb:
The New Era of Semantic Apps
Tiernan Ray / Tech Trader Daily:
Microsoft: Online Ads Will Move Away From Search