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12:10 PM ET, February 5, 2010

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Facebook's Project Titan: A Full Featured Webmail Product  —  Facebook is completely rewriting their messaging product and is preparing to launch a fully featured webmail product in its place, according to a source with knowledge of the product.  Internally it's known as Project Titan.
RELATED:
Eric Eldon / Inside Facebook:
Facebook Begins Rolling Out New Home Page Design  —  Facebook is now fully launching the long-planned redesign, with 80 million users getting it tonight — that's 80 million of the now-400 million people using the site, the company says.  The new design is basically what we've been examining …
Matt Buchanan / Gizmodo:
The $9.99 Ebook Is Dead: Third Major Publisher Hachette Dumps on Amazon  —  Amazon's ebook pricing structure has crumbled.  Hachette's the third major publisher to push for the agency model, following MacMillan and HarperCollins: They'll set the ebook prices (higher, natch) and the bookseller takes a cut.
RELATED:
Dpakman / Pakman's Blog:
Weighing in on Amazon/Macmillan Pricing Debate
Discussion: Music Ally, MediaMemo and TeleRead
Jason Boog / GalleyCat:
Macmillan NYT Ad: “Available at booksellers everywhere except Amazon”
Discussion: Mashable!
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
An Apology To Our Readers  —  On Monday evening I received a phone call from someone I trust who told me that one of our interns had asked for compensation in exchange for a blog post.  Specifically, this intern had allegedly asked for a Macbook Air in exchange for a post about a startup.
Discussion: Loic Le Meur Blog, Thanks:bobcaswell
RELATED:
Daniel Brusilovsky / Weblog of Daniel Brusilovsky:
The Line Was Crossed  —  In the nine months that I've worked at TechCrunch, I've enjoyed every single moment of it.  I couldn't be more thankful to Michael and Heather for giving me this opportunity to work with an amazing organization, and with an amazing group of individuals.
Anthony Ha / VentureBeat:
Siri launches an iPhone personal assistant that actually works  —  The “personal assistant” label gets attached to a lot of websites and applications, but it's always an exaggeration.  Usually the service in question can only tackle a small slice of what a human assistant would do, such as organizing your emails.
RELATED:
Robert Scoble / building43:
A new personal assistant on your mobile phone
Discussion: Computerworld, Thanks:hisiri
MacNN:
Apple prohibits App Store devs from using location-based ads  —  Apple has notified App Store developers that they will be prohibited from using location-based information for mobile advertising.  The company claims the GPS data can only be used to provide “beneficial information.”
Chris Foresman / Ars Technica:
Sling: We didn't ‘work’ with AT&T for 3G streaming to iPhone  —  AT&T made headlines Thursday by announcing that it had decided to allow SlingPlayer Mobile for iPhone to stream video from a Slingbox over its 3G network.  AT&T's CEO claimed in the announcement that Sling Media modified the app …
authorsguild.org:
To RIAA or Not to RIAA, That was the Question  —  February 5, 2010.  As you may be reading in today's paper, the Justice Department in its filing regarding our settlement with Google continues to see legal problems with the settlement, focusing on class action law but also continuing to raise some antitrust concerns.
RELATED:
David Sarno / L.A. Times Tech Blog:
Department of Justice objects to revised Google Books settlement
Amy-Mae Elliott / Pocket-lint:
iTablet launches from UK company  —  Like the iPad but with USB ports, Flash, multi-tasking, choice of OS, HDMI...  In its own words “hot on the heels of Apple's latest product launch”, UK company X2 Computing has launched the “iTablet” range of Windows- or Linux-based tablet PCs.
Xbox Press:
A Letter From Marc Whitten: Discontinuation Of Xbox Live For Original Xbox Games  —  On April 15 we will discontinue the Xbox LIVE service for original Xbox consoles and games, including Xbox v1 games playable on Xbox 360 and Xbox Originals.  I want to start by saying this isn't a decision we made lightly …
Emil Protalinski / Ars Technica:
Buy Office 2007, get 2010 free?  Microsoft posts, pulls deal  —  Microsoft has accidentally posted details about a promotion it will be running for those who buy Office 2007 a few months before and after the release of Office 2010 in June 2010.  It is called the “Microsoft Office 2010 …
Mark Wilson / Gizmodo:
Full Details on the New Nook 1.2 Firmware Going Out Now  —  A B&N employee (who'd just updated their store's Nooks) sent us all the details of the new Nook firmware 1.2 update that, according to the date on this memo, should hit later today.  UPDATE  —  • Enhanced in-store seamless connectivity …
Discussion: Engadget, CrunchGear, SlashGear and TeleRead
Frank X.Shaw / The Official Microsoft Blog:
Measuring Our Work by Its Broad Impact  —  Former Microsoft employee Dick Brass has an op-ed in the NYT arguing that our better days are behind us, ("clumsy, uncompetitive innovator" . . . ouch!) and using examples from his tenure to make the point that the company can no longer compete or innovate.
Daniel Maurer / New York Magazine:
Steve Jobs in Secret New York Meeting With Top Times Execs  —  Bonus Buster: Bank of America Execs Acted Out Of Self-interest, Greed, And Hubris  —  When Apple recently booked the cellar dining room at Pranna for a talk with 50 top executives from the New York Times, even restaurant higher-ups didn't know who their VIP guest would be.
Jolie O'Dell / ReadWriteWeb:
Google Rolls Out Ocean Showcase: It's a Multimedia, Underwater Street View  —  Ah, the sea.  The big blue.  From sharks to shipwrecks, from the perfectly formed pipes of Hawaii's waves to the dark and chilly depths of the deepest sea trenches, it's one of Earth's most fascinating habitats - one that people love watching and exploring.
Discussion: Fast Company and Google LatLong
Avner Ronen / Boxee Blog:
Boxee responds to NBC's Jeff Zucker  —  Congress held a hearing today examining the proposed acquisition of NBC Universal by Comcast.  Speaking before the committee were Brian Roberts, Chairman and CEO of Comcast and Jeff Zucker, President and CEO of NBC.  —  During the hearing the Chairman …
Jack Purcher / Patently Apple:
Location Based Social Networking & Video Calling Coming to iPhone  —  There's an old adage concerning the finding of a location for your brick and mortar retail business: Location, location, location.  While that may still hold water today, that saying is going to be hijacked by the next wave …
Discussion: Go Rumors, SlashGear and iPhone Buzz
AT&T:
AT&T FamilyMap App Launches on App Store  —  App Brings Peace of Mind to Families On-the-Go; Keeps Schedules, Events and Whereabouts Accessible, Centralized on iPhone
Discussion: Phone Scoop and PR Newswire
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:
PayPal Halts Personal Payment Transactions From And To India  —  PayPal isn't working properly in India. eBay's electronic payment juggernaut appears to be blocking personal transactions to or from accounts of India-based users.  It is reversing personal transactions; transactions involving businesses are still allowed.
 
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Microsoft to modernize Special Olympics, raise system to the cloud  —  “We're so excited.  This is going to change our world.” says Special Olympics Chief Executive Officer Janet Froetscher.
Zoho:
Announcing Zoho SalesIQ - Real-time sales intelligence platform with tight Zoho CRM integration.  —  You run an apparel store.  There's a visitor who walked in after seeing your weekly ad.
SAY Media / SAY Daily:
Don't Look Now: Here Come the Disappearing Message Apps  —  Get ready for a world of expiring photos and vanishing status updates.
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Eyeview Wants To Personalize Online Video Like Display And Search  —  It seems all online ads, except video ads, are targeted.  That online video largely isn't personalized seems odd, since the ad industry jumps …
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 More Items: 
Jenna Wortham / Bits:
New York City Names Winners of Apps Contest
Discussion: MediaMemo and CenterNetworks
Connie Loizos / PE Hub Blog:
A Glimpse Inside Ron Conway's Virtual Venture Firm
Help Net Security:
NIST draft of smart grid cyber security strategy
Mehul Srivastava / Business Week:
India's 3G Auctions: Why Companies Are Fearful
Ryan Tate / Gawker:
Blogger Beware: AOL's Robo-Reporters Will Swarm You Like Locusts
Jesse Stay / Stay N' Alive:
Twitter Testing “OAuth Delegation” With Select Partners - Genius
Discussion: the.HackerConundrum
Jason Kincaid / TechCrunch:
MySpace Chief Product Officer Jason Hirschhorn On His Way Out …
Discussion: Silicon Alley Insider
 Earlier Items: 
Larry Dignan / Between the Lines:
IBM hits graphene transistor breakthrough
Discussion: CNET News and Technology Review
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Betty Goes Boop: Cc: Betty To Be Reborn As Threadbox
Discussion: VentureBeat
Eliot Van Buskirk / Epicenter:
Locking Music to ISPs Could Earn ISPs Hundreds of Millions: Study
Discussion: DSLreports
Jay Yarow / Silicon Alley Insider:
Apple Tells A Developer To Erase Android Mention From App Description (AAPL, GOOG)
Discussion: AppScout
Kevin C. Tofel / jkOnTheRun:
Touchscreen Alone on Kindle Isn't Enough to Compete With Future Devices
Discussion: Tech Eye and Kindle Review
 

 
From Mediagazer:

Rafat Ali:
It's About To Get Ugly in Media Startupland

The Intercept:
First Look Media opens up about Matt Taibbi's departure, details months of internal turmoil

Evan Smith / The Texas Tribune:
New York Times-Texas Tribune content partnership to end Dec. 31, after four years

 
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