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7:30 PM ET, March 27, 2009

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Philip Elmer-DeWitt / Apple 2.0:
Has Apple begun clearing iPhone 3G inventory?  —  Staffers at Apple's (AAPL) flagship Fifth Avenue store in New York City confirm that as of Thursday at 8 a.m., customers are now permitted to buy unlimited quantities of iPhones without an AT&T contract — the very thing the company was working …
RELATED:
Kasper Jade / AppleInsider:
AT&T stores now offering early upgrade pricing on iPhone 3G  —  In the latest move aimed at helping Apple clear inventory of iPhone 3Gs ahead of new models anticipated this spring, AT&T retail stores are now offering some customers early upgrades to the Apple handset at subsidized pricing.
Prince McLean / AppleInsider:
Apple stores now selling iPhone 3G without a contract
Caterina.net:
Hunch!  —  We've started sending out invitations to friends and people who signed up on Hunch.  We're going to be launching the full public site in the coming months, but for now — invitations!  —  What is Hunch?  —  Look.  Decision-making is difficult, and decisions have to be made constantly.
RELATED:
Phil Glockner / ReadWriteWeb:   Flickr Co-founder Unveils Her New Startup: Hunch
Larry Dignan / Between the Lines:
Amazon Web Services: No Open Cloud Manifesto for us  —  Update: Amazon will join Microsoft as two big cloud computing players not signing on to the Open Cloud Manifesto.  —  The manifesto, which has raised a ruckus following a Microsoft blog post, is set to be released Monday with IBM as the ringleader.
RELATED:
Erick Schonfeld / TechCrunch:
OMG, OnStar May Soon Let You Twitter From Your Car  —  All you Twitter addicts stuck in traffic, some good news.  You might not have to risk your life any longer sending out one-handed Tweets on your Blackberry or iPhone, while trying to hide the fact that you are doing so under the dashboard.
Discussion: Gear Live and AppScout, Thanks:mrinaldesai
Staci D. Kramer / paidContent.org:
Could Disney Join Hulu?  Sources Say Talks Are Serious  —  Updated: The Walt Disney (NYSE: DIS) Company could wind up with an equity stake in Hulu in exchange for adding ABC programming to the NBC Universal-News Corp (NYSE: NWS) joint venture, a source familiar with the situation tells paidContent.
Nate Anderson / Ars Technica:
When every student has a laptop, why run computer labs?  —  Only four freshmen showed up at the University of Virginia in 2007 without a computer of their own, and the school has decided that it's no longer worth the expense of running campus computer labs.  —  What's the point of running …
Discussion: Technologizer
Chris Foresman / Ars Technica:
JavaScript to get 3x speed boost in iPhone OS 3.0  —  Regardless of whatever new hardware Apple might introduce this summer, existing iPhone users will see an average 300 percent speed increase in JavaScript performance in Mobile Safari.  The increased speed will be helpful for iPhone-specifc web apps …
Zach Epstein / Boy Genius Report:
AT&T offering refurbished BlackBerry Bold for free  —  In the market for a new AT&T smartphone?  Don't care if it's refurbished?  The BlackBerry Bold is about as good as it gets from AT&T right now, and those of you who haven't pulled the trigger yet are in for a treat.  How does free sound?
Aidan Malley / AppleInsider:
Apple developing ‘stealth’ biometric security for iPhone  —  Apple has developed a new technique that would hide a biometric reader inside an iPhone or a Mac and let owners lock down their systems with fingerprints or even facial recognition — all without ever having to break from their usual routine.
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Lawsuit Forces TheFunded To Shutter Service (or early April Fools joke)  —  TheFunded, a website that rates venture funds based on first hand experiences from readers, is shutting down on April 2, according to a notice posted on the site today.  —  This very well may be an April Fools joke …
Discussion: TechFlash, Silicon Alley Insider and PE Hub Blog, Thanks:atul
Brian Krebs / Security Fix:
Conficker: Doomsday, or the World's Longest Rickroll?  —  When it comes to criminal hackers, establishing motive is usually a no-brainer: In a majority of cases, computer worms and viruses are little more than tools that bad guys use to make money.  But every so often, a prolific …
RELATED:
Charles Arthur / Guardian:   House of Commons network hit by Conficker computer worm
Monica Chen / DigiTimes:
Asustek to launch new Eee PC with built-in ODD in mid-April  —  Asustek Computer is scheduled to launch its new Eee PC, the E1004DN, which will be the first Eee PC to have an optical disc drive (ODD), in mid-April, and will follow with the 1008HA in May, according to sources at retail channels.
Brian Stelter / New York Times:
8 Hours a Day Spent on Screens, Study Finds  —  IN a world with grocery store television screens, digitally delivered movie libraries and cellphone video clips, the average American is exposed to 61 minutes of TV ads and promotions a day.  —  Some people may think that amount seems excessive.
Om Malik / GigaOM:
Akamai Data: Internet, Broadband Still Going & Growing  —  The launch of super high-speed DOCSIS 3.0 cable broadband technology, the increased deployment of fiber and faster DSL lines resulted in a sharp increase in the average speed of broadband connections during the fourth quarter of 2008 …
Discussion: Between the Lines and DSLreports
Caroline McCarthy / CNET News:
Facebook, Google, and the data design disaster  —  These days, in this world of IKEA and Target and “Project Runway,” we like to think we know about design.  We also like to think that the biggest names in Silicon Valley know what they're doing design-wise.
Thanks:atul
Brooke Crothers / CNET News:
Intel to refresh laptop chips Monday  —  Intel will refresh its lineup of chips for ultraportable laptops on Monday.  —  The new dual-core processors—targeted at Apple MacBook Air-class laptops—include the 2.53GHz SP9600 priced at $316 with 6MB of cache memory and a thermal envelope rating …
Discussion: Electronista, Thanks:mrinaldesai
Joshua Topolsky / Engadget:
Meizu M8 unboxing and hands-on!  —  Yes, folks — things are about to get really real.  We have managed, through a series of delicate negotiations, to get our hands on an honest-to-goodness Meizu M8 — heretofore the stuff of pure legend.  At first glance, the build quality of the phone …
Discussion: DisplayBlog and techeblog.com
Elizabeth Holmes / Digits:
Tying the Hyperlocal Knot  —  The Knot is launching 75 new localized sites in the hopes of reaching brides-to-be from Tampa to Tucson.  —  The Knot  —  David Liu, CEO of the wedding Web site, said the idea is to provide the “ingredients” that people planning weddings seek out.
Denise Dubie / Network World:
IBM layoffs incite backlash  —  Business decision spurs negative sentiment toward Big Blue  —  IBM's news that it will shed some 5,000 North American jobs and potentially send more positions overseas has stirred up some bad sentiment toward Big Blue as the economy continues to languish.
Discussion: PC World, Thanks:atul
Jason Kincaid / TechCrunch:
Youth Bloggers Network Acquired By Teens In Tech  —  Teens In Tech, a blogging network founded by 16 year old Daniel Brusilovsky, has acquired the Youth Bloggers Network (YBN).  YBN consists of a network of over 100 young bloggers, and was founded by Patrick DeVivo, who is also a young entrepreneur.
David Meyer / CNET News:
‘Jaunty Jackalope’ Ubuntu springs into beta  —  The next version of the Ubuntu Linux distribution, code-named Jaunty Jackalope, went into beta phase late Thursday.  —  Ubuntu 9.04, as it is more properly known, includes a range of enhancements over its predecessor, Intrepid Ibex, or Ubuntu 8.10.
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Facebook “Definitely” Raising Capital This Year; Google Considered Acquisition  —  Last October we wrote about how Facebook's breakaway growth combined with a declining advertising market was forcing the company back to the capital markets.  —  The company has been all over the place …
Discussion: MediaPost and Alan Meckler, Thanks:atul
Mark Walsh / MediaPost:
FDA Official Tells Blogger That Pharma Social Media OK  —  With all kinds of marketers dabbling with the likes of Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, one group of advertisers reluctant to join the social media fray has been big pharmaceutical companies.  That's mainly because of concerns …
 
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 More Items: 
Peter Kafka / MediaMemo:
Imeem Asks Big Music for Help; Gets Some, Needs More
Discussion: CNET News, TechCrunch and Wayne's World
Emel Mutlu / Inside AdWords:
Beta expansion: Try the new AdWords interface
Jeff Chu / Fast Company:
A Social Entrepreneur's Tale: A Newbie Navigates the Skoll World Forum
Fortune:
Rural broadband vs. red tape
Discussion: dailywireless.org
Scott Duke Harris / Mercury News:
Hammerhead Systems goes belly up
Spencer E. Ante / Business Week:
Can Venture Capital Come in from the Cold?
Thanks:atul
Erick Schonfeld / TechCrunch:
The $70 Million Obopay Deal Is More About The UnBanked Than The Banked
 Earlier Items: 
Peter Kafka / MediaMemo:
Reddit's Ad Experiment Is Good News for Condé Nast.  Maybe for Digg, Too.
Todd / The Official Netflix Blog:
Netflix Launches New Personalization Features
Rafe Needleman / CNET News:
Twitter still has no business model, and that's OK
Discussion: paidContent.org
Ryan Paul / Ars Technica:
Google searches for holy grail of Python performance
Discussion: eWeek, jessenoller.com and Slashdot, Thanks:atul
 

 
From Mediagazer:

Ernesto Londoño / Washington Post:
Post reporter, other Americans appear to have been detained in Iran

CNN:
Journalist working for CNN abducted in Ukraine

Reuters:
Carey pressured from both sides of Fox Time Warner deal to stay in job

 
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