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11:30 AM ET, December 23, 2010

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Peter Parkes / The Big Blog:
Status update on downtime  —  See our latest update on the downtime.  —  An update on the downtime which has been affecting many of you around the world: the ability of one Skype user to find another relies on what we call ‘supernodes’, and yesterday, a number of these failed due to a software issue, which we've now identified.
RELATED:
Sarah Perez / ReadWriteWeb:
Skype Outage Continues: Only 30% Functional  —  Yesterday's widespread Skype outage continues today, according to an official update posted early this morning to Skype's company blog.  As of the time the blog post was written, 5 million users were reportedly back online …
Discussion: GigaOM, Phones Review and VentureBeat
Josh Ong / AppleInsider:
Apple's next-gen iPad to get iPod touch-like back, wide-range speaker - rumor  —  The second-generation iPad may have a smaller bezel, a flat back panel and a wide-range speaker, a new unverified report claims.  —  Japanese Mac blog MacOtakara published the rumor Thursday, citing an “anonymous Chinese source.”
Katherine Rosman / Wall Street Journal:
A Holiday Card From Google  —  Five Artists, 250 Hours, Six Months to Create the Search Engine's ‘Doodle’  —  Set to be unveiled at 9 a.m. eastern time Thursday, Google's 2010 holiday doodle has 17 interactive images that approximate the logo's letters and colors.
Brooke Crothers / CNET News:
Obama cites Steve Jobs' wealth, product success  —  President Obama today cited Apple CEO Steve Jobs' product success as an example of a person who Americans should “expect to be rich” as an incentive for others.  —  Responding to a reporter's question, the president prefaced his comments …
Sam Gustin / Epicenter:
Google Buys Giant New York Building for $1.9 Billion  —  Google is down with New York City.  —  So down, in fact, that the web search titan just dropped $1.9 billion to acquire one of the largest and most historic buildings in all of the Big Apple.  At nearly 3 million square feet …
RELATED:
David Radcliffe / The Official Google Blog:
Investing in New York  —  Google New York started in a Starbucks …
Matt Buchanan / Gizmodo:
Oh Look, Here's Samsung's 4G LTE Android Phone for Verizon  —  Looks like Verizon'll have plenty of Android phones running around on 4G LTE soon enough.  Here's a first look at Samsung's, running Froyo and TouchWiz (but according to our tipster, not Bing!).  Aaaand a front-facing camera, Verizon's first.
Dirk Dougherty / Android Developers Blog:
More Payment Options in Android Market  —  A key to a great purchasing experience is providing users with simple and fast payment methods.  The Android Market team has been working hard to deliver more forms of payment to further reduce purchase friction.  Today, I am pleased to announce …
RELATED:
Stefan Constantinescu / IntoMobile:
Android users can now bill app purchases straight to their AT&T account
Discussion: Evolver.fm
Monica Chen / DigiTimes:
ECS, Asustek, MSI to showcase tablet PCs at CES 2011  —  Elitegroup Computer System (ECS), Asustek Computer and Micro-Star International (MSI) are all preparing to showcase their latest tablet PCs at CES 2011.  —  In addition to ECS' already introduced Marvell chip-based 9.7-inch e-book reader …
Hiroko Tabuchi / Bits:
Clues About the Next PlayStation Portable  —  TOKYO —Sony's gaming chief, Kazuo Hirai, expected by some analysts to be Sony's next president, gave hints on Wednesday to burning questions that have fascinated the blogosphere for months: Is there a new Sony handheld gaming device in the works to succeed its PlayStation Portable?
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:
Facebook Appears To Be Blocking All (Bit.ly Operated) j.mp Links  —  William Albano checks in to tell us that Facebook is blocking all j.mp links in status and page updates (but not profiles).  Sure enough, I tried to post a j.mp link in a status update just now, and I got an error notice saying:
Thomas Ricker / Engadget:
HTC Incredible HD teased for January 6th reveal?  —  See that?  No, not all the ambiguous 4G talk, we mean the veiled phone.  If we had to guess we'd say that we're looking at a January 6th reveal of the HTC Incredible HD / Mecha — a device rumored to be headed to Verizon's new LTE network.
Bruce Sterling / Webstock:
The Blast Shack  —  We asked Bruce Sterling (who spoke at Webstock '09) for his take on Wikileaks.  —  The Wikileaks Cablegate scandal is the most exciting and interesting hacker scandal ever.  I rather commonly write about such things, and I'm surrounded by online acquaintances …
Discussion: Infocult and The Atlantic Online
Andrew Wallenstein / paidContent:
Rovi To Buy Sonic Solutions, Forming New Force In Digital Distribution  —  Rovi Corp. declared its intent to acquire Sonic Solutions late Wednesday in a deal worth $720 million.  The combined company could have the clout to accelerate the adoption of digital distribution in video entertainment.
BBC:
Kodaks' patent spat threatens photo web sites  —  The fallout from a patent dispute between Kodak and web photo site Shutterfly could embroil many online image sites, says patent experts.  —  Kodak claimed it owns patents regarding the display of online images that is being infringed by Shutterfly.
Discussion: All Headline News and THE DRUM
Eric Slivka / MacRumors:
Kinect-Like Gesture System for iPad to Be Demoed at CES  —  Mobile Magazine reports that Norwegian company Elliptic Labs is set to offer demonstrations of its new “touchless gesture” user interface for the iPad at CES 2011 early next month.  The interface, which utilizes ultrasound to generate …
Arik Hesseldahl / NewEnterprise:
Gawkergate Collateral Damage Now Includes the New York Times  —  It's now been at least 10 days since the Gawker group of Web sites was hacked by a group calling itself Gnosis in one of the side threads to the WikiLeaks controversy.  —  Within two days, sites like LinkedIn …
Discussion: Fast Company and InformationWeek
OAS:
Joint Statement On Wikileaks  —  In light of ongoing developments related to the release of diplomatic cables by the organization Wikileaks, and the publication of information contained in those cables by mainstream news organizations, the United Nations (UN) Special Rapporteur on Freedom …
Discussion: Computerworld
Pew Internet:
Politics goes mobile  —  More than a quarter of American adults - 26% - used their cell phones to learn about or participate in the 2010 mid-term election campaign.  —  In a post-election nationwide survey of adults, the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project found that 82% of adults have cell phones.
Christian Kaiser / The Netflix Tech Blog:
HTML5 and Video Streaming  —  This is Christian Kaiser, VP of Engineering here at Netflix.  —  My colleague John Ciancutti recently posted about our use of HTML5 for user interfaces; I thought I'd add a perspective on HTML5 and video streaming.  —  Since HTML5 includes a facility to embed video playback …
Discussion: GigaOM
TubeMogul.com:
Brightcove and TubeMogul Q3 Research: Facebook Surpasses Yahoo in Streams Referred; Viewing-Times Longest on Game Consoles  —  We are excited to launch the latest installment of our quarterly research on online video trends with Brightcove, just in time for the holidays!
Greg Kumparak / MobileCrunch:
SkyFire for iPad Launching Tonight For $4.99 [Update: It's Live!]  —  It's been a busy couple of weeks for the folks over at SkyFire.  They launched their Flash Video-friendly browser for the iPhone back in early November, only to pull it down almost immediately to ease the onslaught of users hammering their video transcoding server.
Graham Bowley / New York Times:
Computers That Trade on the News  —  The number-crunchers on Wall Street are starting to crunch something else: the news.  —  Math-loving traders are using powerful computers to speed-read news reports, editorials, company Web sites, blog posts and even Twitter messages …
Cecilia Kang / Post Tech:
Obama's deputy CTO leaves to launch start-ups  —  Andrew McLaughlin, the nation's deputy chief technology officer, said Wednesday he is resigning his post to launch two start-ups aimed at technology development in communities in the United States and abroad.
 
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 More Items: 
Sam Diaz / Between the Lines Blog:
Oh, the irony.  European Commission, an ACTA proponent …
Myspace:
Is Myspace protecting user data?
Discussion: MySpace Developer Team, Thanks:msc_page
Alexia Tsotsis / TechCrunch:
WikiLeaks iPhone App Made $5,840 Before Pulled By Apple …
Spencer E. Ante / Wall Street Journal:
Fortifying Phones From Attackers
Thanks:yangtime
Louis Gray:
Ex-Googlers Launch Beluga for Mobile Group Chat
Discussion: IntoMobile
 Earlier Items: 
Jon Evans / New Scientist:
Banknotes go electric to outwit counterfeiters
Discussion: Newlaunches.com and Fast Company
Adrianne Jeffries / New York Observer:
The Hottest Startups Are Full of Bros
Discussion: SAI
Nate Anderson / Ars Technica:
How Wikileaks killed Spain's anti-P2P law
Discussion: SAI and TorrentFreak
Zachary M. Seward / Digits:
Everything the Internet Knows About Me (Because I Asked It To)
Discussion: SAI
W.J. Hennigan / L.A. Times Tech Blog:
Hedge fund to track Twitter to gauge stock market, report says
Discussion: Bloomberg and SAI
 

 
From Mediagazer:

Craig Timberg / Washington Post:
Profile of Politico's founding CEO and new Washington Post publisher Fred Ryan

Margalit Fox / New York Times:
A look inside NYT Obituaries department with 1700 pre-written obits of famous figures on file

Christine Haughney / New York Times:
Mental Floss finds success in video with “The List Show” using star power of John Green

 
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