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12:05 PM ET, January 4, 2011

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Brier Dudley / Seattle Times:
Consumer Electronics Show comes to Las Vegas this week  —  At CES, more than 2,500 companies are presenting new electronics and tech products.  At least 120,000 attendees from 130 countries are expected to peruse the show floor.  —  You'd think people would have enough gadgets …
Steven M. Davidoff / DealBook:
Facebook and the 500-Person Threshold  —  Goldman Sachs's investment in Facebook once again raises the issue of whether the Securities and Exchange Commission will force the social networking company into an initial public offering.  In particular, this issue arises because of the special purpose vehicle …
RELATED:
Don Dodge / Don Dodge on The Next Big Thing:
Facebook, Twitter, & startup valuations - The best properties always look too expensive  —  The best properties always look too expensive.  Market leaders command the highest prices.  It is only a year or two later that they look like great deals.  The experts thought Microsoft was crazy …
Olga Kharif / Business Week:
In the Works: A Google Mobile Payment Service?  —  “You'll be able to walk in a store and do commerce,” says Google's Eric Schmidt.  “You'd bump for everything and eventually replace credit cards”  —  Google (GOOG) is considering building a payment and advertising service that would let users buy milk …
Dan Frommer / SAI: Silicon Alley Insider:
Microsoft Supposedly Showing Off Its Answer To Apple TV And Google TV At CES  —  Microsoft's Xbox 360 has been a big hit for entertainment and online video, and we've heard that Microsoft is trying to court more media companies to the Xbox.  —  But it looks like the company is also going to unveil …
Jason Kincaid / TechCrunch:
SCVNGR Raises $15 Million At $100MM Valuation  —  Location based game SCVNGR has raised another $15 million in a funding round led by European VC firm Balderton Capital, with participation from previous investors Google Ventures and Highland Capital Partners.
Ed Bott / Ed Bott's Microsoft Report Blog:
Who owns your digital downloads?  (Hint: it's not you)  —  Steve Jobs once said, “People want to own their music.”  —  Someone better tell the folks who run the iTunes Store and its competitors.  If you buy a digital music track or album from the iTunes store or one of its competitors, you don't own it.
Thanks:paulfallon
Sascha Segan / PC Magazine:
Honeycomb to Require Powerful Processor, Screen: OEM  —  Google's new Android Honeycomb tablet OS will require a dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor to run properly, said Bobby Cha, managing director of Korean consumer electronics firm Enspert.  —  That means that many existing Android tablets …
StatCounter Global Stats:
Firefox overtakes Internet Explorer in Europe in browser wars  — Internet Explorer loses crown in major market for first time  —  Boston, USA and Dublin, Ireland; Tuesday 4th January, 2011: Firefox overtook Microsoft's Internet Explorer (IE) to become the number one browser in Europe …
Andrew Wallenstein / paidContent:
New iTunes Features Aim To Outdo DVD  —  Some of the coolest so-called “extras” embedded only on the iTunes' version of several recent film releases from Sony (NYSE: SNE) Pictures aren't even mentioned in their promotional materials.  That's because Sony Pictures Home Entertainment …
Avner Ronen / Boxee Blog:
Boxee partners with Iomega, NAS device running Boxee is coming  —  We are happy to announce that Iomega will be bringing out a Network Attached Storage (NAS) device running the Boxee software.  —  Boxee is a software company (even though some people mistake us for a set-top box maker) …
Kat Hannaford / Gizmodo:
Sprint's HTC EVO Shift 4G On Sale January 9th  —  After flurries of leaks, HTC's EVO Shift 4G smartphone has been introduced by exclusive carrier Sprint, which'll have it on shelves January 9th at $150.  As expected, it's a slide-out QWERTY keyboard phone with a 3.6-inch touchscreen.
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:
Netflix' Next Destination: On Your Remote Control  —  Brilliant idea: Netflix and a number of consumer electronics companies have joined in a development effort to put Netflix-branded one-click buttons on remote controls that operate Internet-connected TVs, Blu-ray disc players and other devices.
Lydia Dishman / Fast Company:
Q&A Site Quora Builds Buzz With A-List Answerers  —  It's not just what gets answered here, but who's doing the answering.  No matter what your question, Charlie Cheever, Adam D'Angelo, and the Quora team are confident you'll find an expert answer on their site.
RELATED:
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Quora Fact-Checks Quora On User Milestone
Dean Takahashi / VentureBeat:
With Fusion, AMD plans to stop being the underdog in chips  —  Making good on plans it laid in 2006, Advanced Micro Devices is finally announcing that its Fusion family of computer chips, which combine graphics functions with general computing power, are ready for prime time.
Donya Blaze / WebNewser:
Marissa Mayer on Google's Failed Groupon Bid  —  After incessant buzz that Google was looking to buy Groupon, word finally came that the fast-growing “deal of the day” company had turned the tech giant down.  So, does that mean Google might launch its own coupon-type service instead?
Erick Schonfeld / TechCrunch:
Facebook Considering A Leaseback Deal Worth As Much As $420 Million For New HQ  —  Faceook is considering moving its headquarters to the old Sun Microsystems campus in Menlo Park, as we previously reported.  Some new details about the transaction have come to light.
Marshall Kirkpatrick / ReadWriteWeb:
Big Data Giant Joins InfoChimps to Save the World's Structured Information  —  Sometimes highly accomplished people just have to join crazy little startups.  It's always exciting to see what happens when they do.  Data scientist Kurt Bollacker is one of those people; he's decided …
Larry Hardesty / MIT News Office:
The surprising usefulness of sloppy arithmetic  —  Ask a computer to add 100 and 100, and its answer will be 200.  But what if it sometimes answered 202, and sometimes 199, or any other number within about 1 percent of the correct answer?  —  Arithmetic circuits that returned such imprecise answers …
Discussion: Softpedia News
Rachael King / Business Week:
Ditch Your Wallet and Pay by Phone  —  Using 200 of its San Francisco staff, the bank will test mobile-phone payments for six months—and may launch a commercial service soon after  —  Wells Fargo (WFC) is again trying to make mobile payments at restaurants and retailers mainstream, three years after an earlier attempt lost steam.
Reuters:
Skype's partner says it is legal in China  —  (Reuters) - Skype's partner in China, TOM Group, said the web-based calling service is complying with Chinese law, even as a crackdown on illegal Internet telephone providers could complicate Skype's operations in the country.
Discussion: TechEye
Andrew Munchbach / BGR:
Best Buy's new ‘Buy Back’ program to launch January 5th for phones, laptops, tablets, and TVs  —  One of our trusted Best Buy sources has come through with several documents that provide additional details on the retailer's new Buy Back program.  The new protection plan …
Bill Slawski / SEO by the Sea:
A Google Like Button: Adsense for Social Network Sharers?  —  A Google patent application published last week describes how Google might enable visitors to websites to share information that they've found with others on social networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and other sites.
Horace Dediu / asymco:
How sticky is Android?  —  There is an assumption floating around the debates in this and other forums that the “battle” between mobile platforms is a land grab.  The unspoken implication of this assumption is that once a user is captured she is permanently locked into the chosen platform never …
Paul Buchheit:
Angel investing, my first three years  —  I started investing in startups with the assumption that I don't know what I'm doing (which is always true), but that the only way to actually learn anything is through experience.  Therefore, my goal was to invest in a variety of startups …
Discussion: Victus Spiritus, VentureBeat and TechCrunch, Thanks:louisgray
 
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 More Items: 
Adam DuVander / ProgrammableWeb:
API Growth Doubles in 2010, Social and Mobile Are Trends
Charles Ying / satine.org:
The Care and Feeding of the Android GPU
Hugo Miller / Bloomberg:
Motorola's Jha Seeks to Defy History After Phone-Unit Spinoff
Jacqui Cheng / Ars Technica:
LimeWire seeks data from Amazon in bid to avoid big payout to RIAA
Gregg Keizer / Computerworld:
Windows 7 breaks 20% share barrier
Wall Street Journal:
Myspace Prepares Downsizing, Layoffs
Discussion: Company Town, Variety and CNBC
Tomio Geron / Venture Capital Dispatch:
New Investment Fund Values Twitter At $4.1 Billion
 Earlier Items: 
Leena Rao / TechCrunch:
J.P. Morgan: Global E-Commerce Revenue To Grow By 19 Percent In 2011 To $680B
Discussion: AdExchanger.com
Electronista:
Study: 40% of iPad owners have Kindles too
Discussion: SAI, ThinkMobile and TechCrunch
Byron Acohido / The Last Watchdog:
Google discloses IE ‘cross fuzz’ flaw before Microsoft can issue patch
Discussion: ZDNet, Darknet and eWeek
Mathew Ingram / GigaOM:
Steve Case's New Soapbox for Defending AOL: Quora
Jessi Hempel / Fortune:
What the hell is going on with TV?  —  Google TV.  Xbox.  Apple TV.
Discussion: Stage Two and VentureBeat
Andy Kessler / Wall Street Journal:
How Videogames Are Changing the Economy
Discussion: InformationWeek and Techdirt