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1:40 PM ET, December 29, 2009


 Top Items: 
David / TmoNews:
T-Mobile “Officially” Confirms Google Phone  —  Update: Our sources are confirming a January 5th date, 9am, ordering through Google ONLY.  Sadly, still no word on pricing.  —  T-Mobile has gone and made their expected support of the Google Phone aka Nexus One “official” this morning, albeit in a vague sort of way.
John Paczkowski / Digital Daily:
Google Announces Jan. 5 Android Event  —  This just in: Google will host an Android press gathering at its global HQ on Jan. 5 (click on image below to enlarge).  Presumably, the event will have something to do with the company's Nexus One, an Android phone that Google plans to sell …
Arn / MacRumors:
Another Buried Apple Trademark - ‘iGuide’ as Another Name or Service for iSlate?  —  With the revelation that Apple had acquired the domain and iSlate trademarks, it seemed clear to us that iSlate was the likely name for Apple's upcoming tablet computer.
Hans / QuickPWN:
iSlate is an eBook reader by Apple, not a Tablet  —  Many rumors of Apple launching an Apple tablet, which is believed to be a large tablet version of the iPhone/iPod touch have been spreading around.  The latest rumor suggests that it will be called an iSlate.
Marshall Kirkpatrick / ReadWriteWeb:
It Was a Facebook Christmas; Site Hits #1 in US For First Time  —  Christmas is a holiday that brings people together, so perhaps it should be no surprise that Facebook has become a part of millions of peoples' Christmas experiences.  For the first time in its history, Facebook was the #1 …
Azaria Jagger / Gawker:
Escaped Inmate Taunts Cops with Facebook Pictures and Status Updates  —  Remember how, in Catch Me If You Can, fugitive Leonardo DiCaprio kept calling Detective Tom Hanks to taunt him?  Here is a convicted burglar doing the same thing, in real time on Facebook.  Should we celebrate or fear him?
Discussion: All Facebook and
Gary Merson / HDGURU.Com:
DirecTV To Launch A 3D Channel-HD Guru Exclusive  —  (December 28, 2009) DirecTV intends to launch the first US 3D HDTV channel early next year.  The satellite TV provider plans to make the announcement at the 2010 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on January 7th.
RELATED:   DIRECTV HD and Movie Choices to Get a Lift With Successful Satellite Launch
Neil Fraser's News:
Google Multivac  —  In 1958 Isaac Asimov wrote a short story titled “All the Troubles of the World” (included in the collection “Nine Tomorrows").  It described a world transformed by Multivac, a giant all-knowing computer.  Asimov died in 1992, a mere four years before Larry and Sergey started …
Andrew Parker / Financial Times:
O2 says sorry for snags in London network  —  has apologised to customers who could not make phone calls because the mobile operator's London network was overwhelmed by bandwidth-hungry smartphones.  —  Ronan Dunne told the Financial Times he was disappointed with O 2 's network performance in London since the summer.
Darren Murph / Engadget:
Ford becomes first automaker to offer HD Radio with iTunes tagging  —  If you thought the automakers would be leaving CES to the TV and PMP makers, Ford would like to have a word with you.  A few words, actually.  Aside from announcing that in-car WiFi will be available next year …
Magic Mouse helps Apple double share of market in 8 weeks  —  Apple's new Magic Mouse helped Apple see a twofold increase in its share of domestic mice sales last month, AppleInsider has learned, garnering the Mac maker a double-digit slice of the market for the first time ever.
Discussion: Electronista
Chris Ziegler / Engadget:
Ten years of BlackBerry  —  The year is 1999.  Bill Clinton is the President of the United States, gas is 94 cents a gallon, Bondi Blue iMacs are a staple in dorm rooms across the country, and Microsoft is trying to bring the desktop Windows experience to the pocket, pushing its Palm-size PC concept …
Discussion: BlackBerry Cool and blogs, Thanks:atul
Netflix Envoy to Wary Hollywood Pitches Web-Viewed Film Rentals to Studios  —  Dec. 29 (Bloomberg) — Netflix Inc. Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos bypassed Hollywood to jumpstart the company's online film-rental business last year.  Now he has to convince the studios the company is a friend and not a foe.
The story of Totlol  —  Prelude - a trap set up by Google Every start-up has a story.  This is the story of Totlol.  Because I did everything myself, it is also the story of almost two years of my life.  It's the story of a flourishing service into which I put tons of work.
Discussion: GigaOM, Thanks:atul
Trevor Johnston / Google LatLong:
Plan a trip in one click  —  Why should trip planning be any more complicated than opening your browser and entering the name of your favourite city?  Six months ago we launched City Tours on Google Labs with the goal of making vacation planning as easy as searching the web.
Aaron Ricadela / Business Week:
Google's Chrome OS Cited as Likely Hacker Vehicle  —  The HTML 5 technology intended to power Google's forthcoming computer operating system can access a PC online or off, warns security vendor McAfee  —  Google's computer operating system, due to be released next year …
Times of London:
Why we can never rest: a year in the life of Twitter  —  ON June 15, our technicians told me to add a note to our website, writes Biz Stone, a co-founder of Twitter.  —  The note warned users of a planned maintenance session that meant our service would be inaccessible while we carried out an overdue system upgrade.
Philip Elmer-DeWitt / Brainstorm Tech:
Mr. iFart appeals to Steve Jobs  —  The developer of the iPhone's No. 1 flatulence app says Apple's policies stink  —  UPDATE: Apple on Monday quietly approved Joel Comm's Ka-Ching Button app, one month after he posted his video appeal.  —  “We added a simple options button that lets people select …
Discussion: and The iPhone Blog
Brooke Crothers / CNET News:
Verizon sees rise of ‘slate’ computers in 2010  —  Verizon is looking closely at “slate” computers as it plans to expand its portfolio of offerings in 2010.  —  In an interview, Brian Ullem, who heads emerging devices for Verizon Wireless, discussed slate computers (aka tablets) …
Leena Rao / TechCrunch:
Collecta Offers A Real-Time View Into MySpace  —  The buzz around realtime search of social networks has mostly surrounded Twitter and Facebook.  Collecta, OneRiot and the search giants, including Microsoft, Google and Yahoo all tap into Twitter (and Facebook too) to capture the realtime stream of content.
Dean Takahashi / VentureBeat:
Will good come from the huge piracy of Modern Warfare 2?  —  Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 has broken records for game sales.  So it's only natural that it is also the most-pirated game of 2009, according to downloads measured by TorrentFreak.  —  Modern Warfare 2 was the most pirated game on the PC and the Xbox 360 this year.
SophosLabs blog:
Twitter banned passwords  —  As you may have heard in the last few days, Twitter has banned 370 passwords (actually only 369, ‘password’ appears twice in the list) as ‘too obvious’ to be safe for their users.  A good move in theory but why are so few words banned?  And what are they?
Dan Butterfield /
China Unicom has now sold 300,000 iPhones  —  iPhone sales are building momentum in China.  On the heels of a major iPhone advertising campaign, last week China Unicom launched a 46-city iPhone roadshow/education campaign.  Today we've learned that China Unicom has now passed the 300,000 iPhone sales threshold.
Nick O'Neill / All Facebook:
Facebook Upgrades Notes Application To Post Feed Images  —  Over the weekend I noticed a small tweak to Facebook's Notes application for blog feeds that are automatically imported: images are now included in the feed stories.  It's a small upgrade and it may have been added more than a week ago …
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 More Items: 
Michael Grothaus / TUAW:
Apple drops MacBook to $899 for students
Discussion: Macworld, Macsimum News and Engadget
Kevin Helliker / Wall Street Journal:
Daring to Live Your Life Offline
Kat Hannaford / Gizmodo:
Rumor: 8GB iPhone 3GS Imminent?
Alexei Oreskovic / Reuters:
AT&T site resumes selling iPhone to NYC residents
Discussion: Silicon Alley Insider
Wall Street Journal:
Keep a Civil Cybertongue
Jonny Evans / 9 to 5 Mac:
Apple sells 1.8million-2 million iPhones in France in 2009
Microsoft pegs China search market as top priority
 Earlier Items: 
Dan Frommer / Silicon Alley Insider:
Wow!  2 Million Downloads For ‘Tap Tap Revenge 3’ Since Going Free Last Week
Discussion: Pulse2 and MacNN
New York Times:
Ex-Employee Says Seagate Violated Law
Discussion: Gizmodo
Brad / HP Fansite:
Alert: HP Envy 17, Envy 14, Elitebook 2540p and 2740p in the pipeline
Discussion: Engadget and Gizmodo Australia
Liz Gannes / GigaOM:
Imeem Fined $1.77M — More Than Its Sale Price
Discussion: Softpedia News and Pulse2

From Mediagazer:

Brian Stelter / CNNMoney:
‘No Notoriety’ campaign to not name mass murderers sees progress

Didi Tang / Associated Press:
Exonerated Chinese journalist Liu Hu recounts tactics used to get him to admit guilt while in jail

Justin Ellis / Nieman Lab:
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