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3:30 PM ET, January 12, 2012


 Top Items: 
Alexandre Roche / Facebook Blog:
Listen to Music With Your Friends  —  Music is one of the most powerful and fun ways to connect.  Whether it's at a concert with a bunch of people or on a long car ride with your best buddy, we love listening to music with our friends.  But what if you could listen to music with your friends …
Jacob Schulman / The Verge:   Facebook introduces ‘listen with friends’ feature for Spotify users, other services coming soon
Ashlee Vance / Business Week:
Steve Ballmer Reboots  —  Cooler tech, more energy, higher profit—the Microsoft CEO is out to prove Steve Jobs wrong and make Redmond relevant again  —  They had his dining room waiting.  Steve Ballmer, Microsoft's chief executive and one of the richest men in the world …
Benjamin Edelman / Ben Edelman:
Google Tying Google Plus and Many More  —  Disclosure: I serve as a consultant to various companies that compete with Google.  But I write on my own — not at the suggestion or request of any client, without approval or payment from any client.  —  This week Google announced Google Search Plus Your World …
Verdi /   EPIC Urges Trade Commission to Investigate Google Search
Dan Lyons / The Daily Beast:
Google Attempts to Take Down Facebook With ‘Search Plus Your World’ Feature
Mike Masnick / Techdirt:
If SOPA's Main Target Is The Pirate Bay, It's Worth Pointing Out That Is Immune From SOPA  —  In looking over Eric Goldman's excellent “linkwrap” of a bunch of recent SOPA/PIPA stories, it pointed me to a article from last month, about how SOPA was really about going after one single site: The Pirate Bay.
E.D. Kain / Forbes:
Time Is Running Out For SOPA Opponents Congressmen Warn At CES 2012  —  Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) showed up at CES 2012 in Las Vegas to issue a stark warning: we're running out of time to stop legislation aimed at cracking down on copyright infringement.
Dan Nguyen / Dan Nguyen pronounced fast is danwin:
The SOPA Debate and How It's Affected by Congress's Understanding of Child Porn
Mary Jo Foley / All about Microsoft Blog:
LG signs Android, Chrome OS patent deal with Microsoft  —  Summary: LG Electronics is the latest Android vendor to license Microsoft patents in order to head off potential legal issues.  —  It's been a couple of months since Microsoft has touted any new Android/Chrome OS vendors agreeing to license its patents.
Curt Woodward / Xconomy:
Microsoft Claims Patent Licenses on 70% of Android Phones
Stephen Rosenman / Seeking Alpha:
Apple's Foreign Cash Hoard  —  Apple (AAPL) is piling up boatloads of cash: just not here.  —  Those boatloads are increasing becoming docked in Apple's foreign subsidiaries and cannot be repatriated without incurring additional hefty U.S. taxes.  A whopping $54 billion of Apple's $82 billion cash …
Discussion: Techie Buzz, TUAW and PhoneArena
David Barboza / New York Times:
Foxconn Resolves Pay Dispute With Workers  —  SHANGHAI — Foxconn Technology, the largest contract electronics manufacturer in the world, said Thursday that it had resolved a pay dispute with scores of workers at one of its factories in central China, following a large protest that involved threats …
Leena Rao / TechCrunch:
Amazon Kindle Owners Are “Borrowing” Nearly 300,000 Electronic Books A Month  —  Amazon is releasing new data on its Kindle Lending Library, which the e-commerce site says now has over 75,000 books.  The Kindle Owners' Lending Library is a collection of books that Amazon Prime members who own …
Gregory Lyons / iCrossing:
Facebook to Hit a Billion Users in the Summer  —  Last summer we took a look at Facebook usage around the world, and with Facebook recently announcing that they're currently at over 800 million active users we thought it would be interesting to extrapolate their current grown rate and estimate …
Bill Rigby / Reuters:
ARM chief not impressed with Intel phone chips  —  (Reuters) - The head of British chip designer Arm Holdings plc has shrugged off the latest attempt by Intel Corp to muscle its way into the expanding market for low-power processors used in smartphones and tablets, which ARM dominates.
Walter S. Mossberg / AllThingsD:
Working In Word, Excel, PowerPoint On an iPad  —  Although Apple's popular iPad tablet has been able to replace laptops for many tasks, it isn't a big hit with folks who'd like to use it to create or edit long Microsoft Office documents.  —  [ See post to watch video ]
Nate Anderson / Ars Technica:
MPAA attacks Ars for “challenging efforts to curb content theft”  —  The Motion Picture Association of America doesn't like us.  According to the MPAA blog on Tuesday, “Arts Technica” is a “tech blog with a long history of challenging efforts to curb content theft.”
Discussion: Fortune and MPAA Blog
Om Malik / GigaOM:
Bigger than Google+, MySpace isn't dead yet  —  MySpace, the grand daddy of social services is still wheezing along, comScore says in its latest social media report.  In fact it is bigger than Tumblr and Google Plus.  I have no idea where (and why) MySpace is getting so much traffic - still.
Discussion: hypebot and The Next Web
Jamie Keene / The Verge:
Boxee's Live TV joins the Facebook Open Graph party  —  Boxee has announced a new level of Facebook integration to its service, using the Open Graph auto-sharing feature to post what you're watching in Live TV dongle direct to your Timeline.  The integration runs a little deeper than this …
Cade Metz / Wired Enterprise:
Google's Data Center Engineer Shares Secrets of ‘Warehouse’ Computing  —  Luiz André Barroso doesn't see Google's data centers as data centers.  He sees them as computers the size of warehouses.  Barroso is a distinguished engineer at Google and a former researcher at the once …
Forecasting next week's Apple education event  —  iBooks, ebooks, and iWork could be on the agenda for the January 19 event  —  All we know for certain about Apple's upcoming press event on January 19 is what it says on the invitation: It's at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City, and it's focused on education.
Liz Gannes / AllThingsD:
Facebook Gives Politico Deep Access to Users' Political Sentiments  —  Counting Twitter mentions would have you believe that Ron Paul is the most popular Republican candidate in the ongoing U.S. primaries.  Umm, right.  —  But some social media analysis of politics is going beyond that.
Eric Slivka / MacRumors:
Target Confirms Plans to Bring Dedicated Apple Shops to 25 Stores  —  Reuters reports that Target has confirmed its plans to launch “store-within-a-store” concepts for Apple products in 25 of its stores around the United States.  The announcement comes alongside a broader effort called …
Scott Kveton / Urban Airship:
Update on our plan to integrate location and context services into our push messaging platform  —  We announced the acquisition of SimpleGeo at the end of October 2011.  Since then we've been evaluating how to proceed in a way that benefits all parties involved: SimpleGeo and Urban Airship customers plus both companies.
Leena Rao / TechCrunch:
eBay Forecasts $8B In Mobile Commerce Volume In 2012; PayPal Will Reach $7B  —  At his CES keynote yesterday evening, eBay CEO (and new interim PayPal CEO) John Donahoe revealed a number of new mobile payments forecasts for both eBay and PayPal.  As we heard from PayPal VP David Marcus a few days ago …
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Upload Web Receipts for scanning with the new Google Chrome add-on  —  Remember the days of keeping receipts in a shoebox?  Sure, you had them all in one place, but they weren't organized, they weren't sorted …
CareerArc: How Square's Debut Draws Concerns Over IPO “Ratchets” & Impact on Tech Talent  —  Square's IPO points a spotlight on “IPO Ratchets”—now a common demand among tech investors.  But how might ratchets affect employees?
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 More Items: 
New gTLDs Update: Applications Accepted Today; New Guidebook Posted; Financial Assistance for Qualifying Applicants
Alex Wilhelm / The Next Web:
Microsoft: Windows Phone will not battle Android on specs, will instead fight for ‘quality’
Discussion: The Verge and WMPoweruser
Janko Roettgers / GigaOM:
First numbers: How successful are Spotify's apps?
Discussion: AllThingsD
Eric Eldon / TechCrunch:
NewsGator Has Quietly Built An Enterprise Social Networking Business On Top Of SharePoint
Julie Bort / Business Insider:
Amazon Web Services Now Available Without That Messy ‘Web’ Part
Discussion: Computerworld
Jack Purcher / Patently Apple:
Sharp is Reportedly Out of the Race for iPad 3 Display Production
 Earlier Items: 
Jenna Wortham / Bits:
Beyond Siri: Voice Recognition Pops Up in More Gadgets
Seth Weintraub / 9to5Mac:
The MacBook Air Samsung SSD is about to get twice as fast
Discussion: SlashGear
Alicia Eler / ReadWriteWeb:
Study: Your Facebook Personality Is The Real You