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2:55 PM ET, March 24, 2009

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
The Official Google Blog:
Two new improvements to Google results pages  —  Today we're rolling out two new improvements to Google search.  The first offers an expanded list of useful related searches and the second is the addition of longer search result descriptions — both of which help guide users more effectively to the information they need.
RELATED:
Greg Sterling / Search Engine Land:
Google Implements ‘Orion’ Technology, Improves Search Refinements & Adds Longer Snippets  —  Google is announcing two changes to search results this morning.  The first involves the use of longer “snippets” (text extracts containing the keywords) when users input queries of three words or more.
Discussion: Digits, Thanks:atul
Marshall Kirkpatrick / ReadWriteWeb:   Google Changes Could Decrease Downstream Traffic
RELATED:
Dean Takahashi / VentureBeat:
New OnLive service could turn the video game world upside down  —  Few startups have a chance to revolutionize an industry.  But if entrepreneur Steve Perlman's OnLive lives up to its goals, the company will disrupt the entire video game industry — to the delight of both game publishers and gamers.
RELATED:
Martyn Williams / Computerworld:
Michael Dell hints at smartphones, mobile Internet devices  —  CEO says it wouldn't be unreasonable to expect a smartphone or similar device from the company  —  IDG News Service) Michael Dell gave the strongest hint to-date that his company is developing a mobile Internet device or smartphone at a speech in Tokyo today.
RELATED:
Richard Jones / Last.fm:
Last.fm Radio Announcement  —  Today we're announcing an upcoming change to the way Last.fm Radio works in some parts of the world.  In the United States, United Kingdom and Germany, nothing will change.  —  In all other countries, listening to Last.fm Radio will soon require a subscription of €3.00 per month.
Om Malik / GigaOM:
Skype, Now the Largest Long-distance Phone Company  —  TeleGeography says that cross-border telephone traffic grew 14 percent in 2007 and is estimated to have grown 12 percent in 2008, to 384 billion minutes.  Falling prices and rising popularity have flattened the revenues (see graph below the fold).
Discussion: DSLreports
RELATED:
Stephan Beckert / TeleGeography Research:
Skype's share of the international long-distance pie on the increase
Discussion: Epicenter and The SiliconANGLE
BBC:
Call to ‘shut down’ Street View  —  Images of 25 cities are viewable via Google Street View  —  A formal complaint about Google's Street View has been sent to the Information Commissioner (ICO).  —  Drawn up by privacy campaigners, it cites more than 200 reports from members of the public identifiable via the service.
Wall Street Journal:
Sprint Looks Beyond Cellphones  —  As Core Business Slumps, Wireless Carrier Aims to Use Its Network for Dashboard Computers, GPS Devices  —  Unable to sign up enough new cellphone subscribers, Sprint Nextel Corp. is increasingly trying to use the excess capacity on its wireless network to power other consumer gadgets.
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:
Twitter Tweaks Its Title Tags For Better Google Juice  —  Notice that title tag for my Twitter profile page?  —  It reads “Robin Wauters (robinwauters) on Twitter” where it used to say “Twitter / robinwauters”.  For the TechCrunch Twitter account, it used to read “Twitter / TechCrunch” …
Discussion: Between the Lines, bub.blicio.us and SearchViews, Thanks:atul
Robert Andrews / paidContent.org:
Industry Moves: Hulu Adds New Exec Larcher For International Push  —  Hulu has further signaled its overseas ambitions by hiring a dedicated international SVP to acquire TV rights.  Johannes Larcher had previously been search firm Overture's international GM, international VP for Friendster …
Hicham Alaoui / Google News Blog:
New Insights for your Search  —  Some of you may already be familiar with Google Insights for Search, which launched last August.  —  Much like Google Trends, you can use Insights for Search to analyze search volume patterns over time, as well as related queries and rising searches.
John D. Sutter / CNN:
No joke in April Fool's Day computer worm  —  (CNN) — A computer-science detective story is playing out on the Internet as security experts try to hunt down a worm called Conficker C and prevent it from damaging millions of computers on April Fool's Day.  —  The anti-worm researchers …
Discussion: Switched
Peter Burrows / Business Week:
Palm's Secret Weapon for the Pre  —  Against the odds, Palm courted a formidable community of developers whose apps may prove vital to the fortunes of the make-or-break Pre smartphone  —  As recently as late 2008, Pandora Networks' Chief Technology Officer Tom Conrad still had big doubts about the prospects for smartphone maker Palm.
Seth Weintraub / 9 to 5 Mac:
Woops!  China Unicom post iPhone Page - Guess who is bringing the iPhone to China?  —  They don't get any better than this!  It looks like the biggest mobile market in the world will be served the iPhone by China Unicom - unless there is something very shady going on.
Ploth / perceptdev.com:
iPhone Keyboard - no Jailbreaking required, using 2.0 SDK  —  A number of industrious individuals have achieved what to some is the holy grail of iPhone accessories: an iPhone keyboard.  But most have done it in a very hard-to-repeat manner, and few have shared the methods they used.
Josh Lowensohn / CNET News:
Skimmer brings your social streams to the desktop  —  Skimmer is a new social aggregator powered by Adobe AIR.  It supports Twitter, Flickr, Facebook, YouTube, and Blogger, and lets you stay abreast of the latest content from each of those services.  Everything gets sucked up into a single stream …
Lucy Hornby / Reuters:
“Unafraid” of Internet, China appears to block YouTube  —  BEIJING (Reuters) - China is not afraid of the Internet, its Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday, even as access to the popular video sharing site YouTube appeared to be blocked.  —  YouTube has unavailable for users in China …
Larry Seltzer / eWeek:
The First Linux Botnet  —  It never made sense that you could make a botnet out of Linux desktop users, but the people who built psyb0t knew its users don't pay attention to it.  —  They're calling it the first botnet designed for broadband equipment and routers, and that it is.
Adrian Kingsley-Hughes / Hardware 2.0:
Seagate announces BlackArmor network storage solution  —  Seagate has a a new encrypted network attached storage solution to its BlackArmor line.  —  Two new NAS devices have been announced:  — NAS 420 - 2-drive, 4-bay NAS offering 2TB or storage using Barracuda 7200.11 SATA drives
Discussion: Obsessable
Luigi Lugmayr / I4U News:
New LG Lollipop Phones LG-SV800, KH8000, LH8000 are Cute  —  LG introduces the LG Lollipop Phones (LG-SV800, KH8000, LH8000) in Korea.  —  The fashionable clamshell phone features 220 LEDs on the outside that can display pixel animations.  —  Additionally the Lollipop phone can light …
Discussion: Newlaunches.com
Qblogger / Windows Home Server Team Blog:
Windows Home Server - Announcing Power Pack 2  —  We are pleased to announce Windows Home Server Power Pack 2.  Power Pack 2 fixes known issues and adds new features to improve the Windows Home Server experience.  Enhancements include: Improvements to remote access configuration …
Chris Albrecht / NewTeeVee:
ZeeVee Admits Missteps, Goes Pro and Apes Boxee  —  It's always refreshing when a CEO owns up to mistakes their company makes.  That was the case when I spoke with Vic Odryna, CEO of ZeeVee, who admitted that his company misjudged the market for its Zv100 set-top box.
Discussion: last100, Crave, Xconomy and Download Squad
 
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 More Items: 
Elaine Chow / Gizmodo:
Rumored Lenovo oPhone OS Looks Too Apple-like
Discussion: IntoMobile and Electricpig.co.uk
Sue McAllister / Mercury News:
More office space, lower leases in Silicon Valley
Daisy Whitney / NewTeeVee:
comScore Chairman: Down with Clicks, Up with Video
Discussion: Beet.TV
PC World:
Cisco Cutting Home Broadband Perks to Reduce Costs
Farhad Manjoo / Slate:
Stop Whining About Facebook's Redesign
Eric Savitz / Tech Trader Daily:
Red Hat Jumps On Rumors Oracle Might Bid
 Earlier Items: 
Alana Semuels / L.A. Times Tech Blog:
Smartphones now have one-third of market share globally, report says
Discussion: Electronista
Jason Kincaid / TechCrunch:
BillShrink Brings Its Cost-Cutting Engine To The Gas Pump
Discussion: VentureBeat and CNET News
Michael Masnick / Techdirt:
A Closer Look At How The Takedown Process Is Widely Abused
Chippy / UMPCPortal:
ASUS Eee Keyboard PC (Video)
Garett Rogers / Googling Google:
Hackers steer clear of Google Chrome, say too challenging
Discussion: Zero Day
 

 
From Mediagazer:

David Sessions / Patrol:
To keep up with the demands of the Web, online news sites are overproducing worthless content

Chris Ariens / TVNewser:
Diane Sawyer Signs Off ‘World News:’ 'I'll See You Right Back Here on ABC News, Very Soon'

Lene Sillesen / Columbia Journalism Review:
The Guardian partners with more local news outlets to tell under-reported stories

 
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