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3:35 PM ET, December 4, 2008

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
The Boy Genius / Boy Genius Report:
Apple to sell a $99 4GB iPhone at Walmart?  —  We just got a tip that in addition to the iPhone 3G actually making its way to Walmart, as we exclusively told you, there will be a 4GB model priced at $99 with a 2-year agreement.  We're not putting our stamp of approval behind this one just yet …
RELATED:
Arn / MacRumors:   Wal-Mart to Sell $99 4GB iPhone?
Avner / boxee blog:
boxee <3 Netflix  —  when we planned the Dec 4th release we had minor changes in mind, mainly bug-fixes.... but we were undisciplined and immature.. and it turned from a minor release into a big one..  —  we could not ignore the number of people asking for Netflix on boxee.. so we called …
RELATED:
Josh Lowensohn / Crave: The gadget blog:
Boxee gets support for Netflix streaming  —  Boxee is releasing on Thursday a new version of its media center software that adds support for Netflix Watch Instantly streaming movies.  —  Unlike streaming solutions from Roku and Microsoft's Xbox 360, Boxee's effort includes the option …
Discussion: A VC, TUAW, Geek.com and Electronista
Simon Sage / IntoMobile:
World's Second Android Phone Now on Presale … Kogan's Agora and Agora Pro hinted at last month is now ready to roll, costing AU$299 and AU$399, and shipping on January 29th.  The Agora Pro's specs are as follows:  — Operating System: Android™  — Google Mobile Functions …
RELATED:
www.kogan.com.au:
Here it is: The Kogan Agora  —  I'm very excited to be able to show you the Kogan Agora and the Kogan Agora Pro.  —  The Agora will cost AU$299, and the Agora Pro will be AU$399.  Both are on sale now and will ship to you on January 29th 2009.  —  The full specs can be found here.
AT&T:
AT&T Announces Job Reductions  —  AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) today announced a planned reduction of approximately 12,000 jobs, or about 4 percent of the company's total workforce, citing economic pressures, a changing business mix and a more streamlined organizational structure.
RELATED:
Om Malik / GigaOM:
With AT&T Job Cuts, Telco Recession is Official
Discussion: NewTeeVee and CED
Rick Turoczy / ReadWriteWeb:
Times Extra: The New York Times Opens Web Front Page to Outside Content  —  New York TimesAt a time when the online world is continually seen as a more trusted source of news, mainstream media outlets find themselves forced into the position of becoming more and more open to keep their readers coming back.
Discussion: Mashable! and TomsTechBlog.com
RELATED:
Erick Schonfeld / TechCrunch:   The New York Times Clutters Up Its Homepage With Links From Elsewhere (In Beta)
Opera Community:
Peregrine takes flight... Opera 10.0 Alpha 1 is here!  —  It seems like yesterday we released Opera 9.6 and now you can all get your hands on Opera 10.0.  Rather than ramble on, here's a quick list of what's new:  — Presto 2.2 Engine  — Performance boost  — 100/100 and pixel-perfect on the Acid3 test
RELATED:
Brad Linder / Download Squad:
Opera 10 Alpha 1 web browser passes the Acid3 test
Discussion: Technologizer, TechCrunch and Mashable!
Electronista:
Apple files patent for hover-ready touchscreen  —  Apple has developed technology that would let an iPhone or similar device be controlled by hovering fingers nearby rather than just touches alone, a new US patent filing shows.  The system would include the company's familiar capacitive touchscreen technology …
Discussion: TUAW and SlashGear
RELATED:
Sam Oliver / AppleInsider:
Apple proposes infrared matrix to aid larger multi-touch designs
Discussion: The Register and MacBlogz
Kara Swisher / BoomTown:
Former Yahoo Tech Star Qi Lu Likely to Be Named Microsoft's Digital Head by Next Week  —  Former Yahoo tech star Qi Lu (pictured here) is poised to take on the big job of being Microsoft's top digital executive, according to several sources inside and outside the company.
Ben Lorica / O'Reilly Radar:
Facebook Growth Regions and Gender Split  —  Since we began tracking Facebook demographics in late May, weekly growth has held steady, usually in the low single-digits on a percentage basis.  More importantly, it's fair to say that the company has successfully expanded overseas.
Discussion: WebProNews
RELATED:
Matt Asay / The Open Road:
Facebook finally hits the mainstream
Discussion: Going Social Now
Jeremy Kirk / LinuxWorld.com:
Firefox users targeted by rare piece of malware  —  Researchers at BitDefender have discovered a new type of malicious software that collects passwords for banking sites but targets only Firefox users.  —  The malware, which BitDefender dubbed “Trojan.PWS.ChromeInject.A” sits in Firefox's add-ons folder …
Discussion: ReadWriteWeb and Zero Day
RELATED:
BitDefender:
BitDefender detects novel approach to stealing web passwords
Discussion: Icrontic
Gartner:
Gartner Says Worldwide Smartphone Sales Reached Its Lowest Growth Rate With 11.5 Per Cent Increase in Third Quarter of 2008  —  Apple Overtakes Microsoft As No. 3 Smartphone OS Vendor  —  In the third quarter of 2008, the global smartphone market reached its weakest year-on-year growth since Gartner, Inc. began tracking the industry.
Hamilton Nolan / Gawker:
The Dreaded Viacom Layoffs: 850 People  —  The long-feared Viacom pre-post holiday layoffs are here, and they're not pretty.  We heard earlier that as many as 300 layoffs might be coming at MTV today, but the total, Viacom-wide numbers are even worse: 850 people are being cut, about 7% of the company's global staff.
Neal Santos / The Clog:
Zunegate  —  OK.  So let's get things straight.  —  I want to correct what I said yesterday about Obama using a Zune.  I claimed that it was his Zune.  I don't know for sure that it was his.  It could belong to one of the many Secret Service dudes that were at the gym, Michelle, or even one of his daughters.
Rafe Needleman / CNET News:
Facebook Connect officially open...and it will win  —  Facebook is officially announcing today that the company's log-in system, Facebook Connect, is officially open for business for non-Facebook sites.  Facebook is making the implementation of Facebook Connect self-service …
Oliver Marks / Collaboration 2.0:
Open source thrives in downturn  —  Collaboration initiatives are all about streamlining business processes, and the interfaces between legacy closed systems and open source stacks are an increasingly common place to find business collaboration environments.
Discussion: Network World
William M. Bulkeley / Wall Street Journal:
IBM Offers ‘Microsoft-Free’ Desktop  —  Applications for Thin Clients Would Operate From Back-Office Server  —  International Business Machines Corp. is hoping to convince corporate customers that they no longer need Microsoft Corp.  —  IBM says it has created a “Microsoft-free” …
Mark Hendrickson / TechCrunch:
Flickr Revamps Mobile Site, Adds Video Streaming Support  —  Flickr has released a new version of its mobile site that affords several new features, most notably the ability to stream video clips up to 90-seconds in length.  —  Video streaming will be initially available for only the iPhone and iPod Touch …
Discussion: Mashable!, ReadWriteWeb and CNET News
Arkansas IMC:
Forget Cyber Monday: COBY Plans “Moore's Law” MIDGET PC for $100 in March  —  Sales of 100 million, worldwide, in five years?  —  Coby Electronics, a leading international manufacturer and distributor of electronics consumer-packaged goods for discount stores, plans to introduce the first under-$100 laptop by March 2009.
Ina Fried / Beyond Binary:
Online auctions remain piracy problem for Microsoft  —  Attention, software buyers: there's no such thing as Microsoft Office “Blue Edition.”  —  That's the latest ruse making the rounds on online auctions.  It feigns to be some sort of technician version of Microsoft's software that happens …
 
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Another Patent Troll Slain.  You Are Now Free To Rotate Your Smartphone.  —  Rotatable Technologies is now an ex-patent troll.  I say “ex-troll” because its patent, US Pat.  No. 6,326,978, has been declared unpatentable …
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 More Items: 
Kate Greene / Technology Review:
A Winning Web Formula
Dave Linthicum / Real World SOA:
Five things that are killing SOA technology, Recession Edition
Karl Bode / DSLreports:
Verizon Promises Not To Cherry Pick Philadelphia …
Discussion: xchange magazine
Brian Prince / eWeek:
Microsoft and EMC Partner to Build Data Loss Prevention Technology in Infrastructure
Discussion: The Register and Channel Insider
Scott M. Fulton, III / BetaNews:
Microsoft seeks ‘community’ help to make IE8 Standards Mode work out
Discussion: All about Microsoft and IEBlog
The Register:
Apple more closed than Microsoft
Discussion: The Open Road
 Earlier Items: 
Eric Savitz / Tech Trader Daily:
Apple: Piper's Munster Cuts Ests, Target On Macro Issues
Discussion: AppleInsider
Barry Schwartz / Search Engine Land:
Google Adds Search Box To YouTube Videos & Adds HD Embed
Nicholas Carlson / Silicon Alley Insider:
Buy This Recession Winner: Amazon.com (AMZN)
Discussion: Tech Trader Daily
Dean Takahashi / VentureBeat:
Secret Builders goes live with educational game world for kids
Discussion: Virtual Worlds News
Luke Plunkett / Kotaku:
Grand Theft Auto IV On PC Is A Little Broken
Discussion: TechSpot
Royal Pingdom:
Google Apps SLA loophole allows for major downtime without consequences
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Amazon Launches Public Data Sets To Ease Research
Discussion: Bits
 

 
From Mediagazer:

Andrew Beaujon / Poynter.:
Reporter quits Sun-Times, cites ‘chilling effect in the newsroom’

Max Read / Gawker:
Gawker posts belated retort to Gamergate campaign targeting advertisers and partners, says thousands in revenue lost

Michael Wolff / Hollywood Reporter:
Michael Wolff on HBO, CBS Streaming: TV Is Disrupting the Internet

 
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