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12:20 PM ET, January 9, 2009

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Adrian Covert / Gizmodo:
Palm Pre Preview: Simply Amazing  —  Hey, I just had some time to play with the Palm Pre, maybe the most important handset to be announced in two years, and here's what it was like to use it.  Updates coming.  —  The Palm Pre is a lot smaller than I initially thought it would be.
RELATED:
Joshua Topolsky / Engadget:
Palm Pre in-depth impressions, video, and huge hands-on gallery  —  We just sat down with Palm for a more in-depth look at the device, and here are our takeaways.  First off, the software and hardware they're showing right now aren't the final versions.  They're updating and tweaking as we speak …
Greg Kumparak / MobileCrunch:
“Hands on” with the Palm Pre
Wall Street Journal:
Yahoo Nears End of CEO Search  —  Yahoo Inc. is in the final stretch of its search for a chief executive officer, and a decision could come as soon as next week, said people close to the Internet company.  —  Among candidates still under consideration is Carol Bartz, the former chief executive officer …
RELATED:
Henry Blodget / Silicon Alley Insider:
Is Yahoo CEO Candidate Carol Bartz Any Good? (YHOO)
Discussion: p2pnet
Alex Chitu / Google Operating System:
Google Chrome 2.0 Pre-Beta  —  Google Chrome's development is high-paced and version numbers are not very significant, but it's weird to see a pre-beta release of Chrome 2.0, four months after Chrome 0.2.  There are many new things in Chrome 2.0:  —  * form autocomplete …
RELATED:
Jonathan Skillings / Webware.com:
Google tunes up Chrome development  —  Google's Chrome development team has offered a status update of its work on the company's young open-source browser.  —  The most significant changes, according to a Chromium Development Documentation posting on Thursday, include the following:
Discussion: Beet.TV and Chromium Blog
Stephanie Clifford / New York Times:
For BlackBerry, Obama's Devotion Is Priceless  —  This week, Michael Phelps signed a deal worth more than $1 million to advertise Mazda in China.  Jerry Seinfeld earned a reported $10 million to appear in Microsoft's recent television campaign.  —  But the person who may be the biggest celebrity pitchman …
Amazon Web Services Blog:
Manage Amazon EC2 With New Web-Based AWS Management Console  —  Today we're announcing the availability of the Web-based AWS Management Console, which in this first release provides management of your Amazon EC2 environment via a point-and-click interface.  A number of management tools already exist …
Emil Protalinski / One Microsoft Way:
Windows 7 public beta is available now  —  As Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer promised at CES 2009 during his preshow keynote, the Windows 7 beta is now available to the public for download.  It is only available to the first 2.5 million people who download it, so make sure to get your hands on it as soon as you can!
Lester Haines / The Register:
‘Kidnapped’ child tracked by mobile phone and Street View  —  Cops cuff grandmother following tech dragnet  —  A “kidnapped” nine-year-old Massachusetts girl is safely back at home after a team effort by an enterprising local cop and deputy fire chief which exploited the signal from her mobile phone …
Matt Richtel / Bits:
Microsoft: Expect Fewer Phones With Windows  —  Microsoft says it is responding to the fierce competition in the phone market by retooling and beefing up its mobile operating system-and by putting it on fewer devices.  —  Todd Peters, the vice president of marketing for the Windows Mobile division …
The Ask.com Blog:
Semantic Search Technology Advances from Ask.com  —  For millions of everyday queries, there is one, simple, direct answer the user is seeking, but the current generation of search relegates consumers to sifting through links and then searching through the Websites themselves to find the answer.
John Oates / The Register:
Ballmer tries to breathe life into Yahoo! deal  —  Dead! horse! flogged!  —  Steve Ballmer is still trying to resurrect a possible search deal with Yahoo!.  —  Ballmer told the FT that he thought a search deal was still possible - and that it would most likely happen when Yahoo! …
Jacob Schulman / Engadget:
Coby's sub-$200 netbooks handled at CES  —  Remember those sub-$100 Coby netbooks that we deemed a hoax?  Well, it looks like they might not be as hoax-y as we originally thought.  Here at CES, Coby has a bunch of base models on the show floor in a myriad of color combos.
Speaking of Security, the RSA Blog and Podcast:
Online Fraudsters Prey Upon the Media and Public Interest in Current Events to Launch “Cease-Fire Trojan Attack”  —  Yesterday morning, the RSA FraudAction Research Lab discovered a social engineering scam designed to lure people, via an email spam attack, to a fake news website designed to look like CNN.com.
Joel Hruska / Ars Technica:
AMD's Phenom II could mark company turnaround  —  AMD's 45nm Phenom II (codenamed Deneb) has the dubious honor of being what may be the most immediately anticipated processor, ever.  Even before AMD had finished shoveling its original Phenom out the door, the company was talking up 45nm Shanghai …
Randy Nelson / Joystiq:
The First Wii: Obama brings video games to the White House  —  When Barack Obama takes office on January 20th, he'll not only be the most powerful man in the world, but also the most powerful gamer.  (Nintendo did give outgoing President Bush a DS and Brain Age some years ago; it's up to you to decide if he ever played it.)
Jack Davis / Docu-Drama:
Could it be?  Survey says executive salary cutbacks are climbing  —  “One clear sign of the challenging economic environment we face is the decision by executives to take a pay cut,” according to a survey of executive pay practices by Equilar, the Redwood City information services firm that mines SEC filings for compensation data.
Ed Sutherland / Cult of Mac:
Apple Ditching MacWorld in Favor of CES?  —  Apple is ditching MacWorld to instead exhibit at CES next year instead, according to one source.  —  The source, citing “friends who work at Apple,” insisted the company is ditching MacWorld because it will “go large” at CES, which typically runs concurrently with MacWorld in early January.
Sascha Segan / Gearlog:
CES 2009: The Stupidest Accessory at CES is 100% Fail  —  Okay.  Two hours at CES and I've already found the absolute stupidest accessory at the show.  If you want to add massive fail to your life, hop on over to Cell-Mate to check out this truly idiotic product, which is a piece of metal …
Discussion: OhGizmo! and MobileDevicesToday
Mark Ward / BBC:
Do-it-yourself 3D movies at home  —  BBC News technology correspondent, Las Vegas  —  3D films may soon no longer be the sole province of movie studios with big budgets.  —  At CES, two firms have been showing off ways for home users to make and share their own 3D films.
Daily Mail:
What credit crunch?  Apple launch £1.6m diamond-encrusted iPhone … As the global credit crunch continues to bite in 2009 one jeweller has decided to buck the trend by designing the world's most expensive phone.  —  The new Apple iPhone 3G ‘Kings Button’ is made of solid 18 carat yellow gold, white gold and rose gold.
Discussion: IntoMobile and mobilesyrup.com
Datamation:
How China's ‘50 Cent Army’ Could Wreck Web 2.0  —  Two years ago, Chinese President Hu Jintao called on Chinese Communist Party (CCP) members to “assert supremacy over online public opinion, raise the level and study the art of online guidance and actively use new technologies to increase the strength of positive propaganda.”
Discussion: Beyond Search
John Timmer / Ars Technica:
Report: Gmail about one-third as expensive as hosted e-mail  —  What does it cost to host an e-mail account?  It seems like a simple question, but a remarkable number of enterprises surveyed by Forrester had no idea of how to answer that question.  A new report by the research company …
Discussion: PC World
Erica Sadun / Ars Technica:
Linux-based HP Mini Mi ships with command line disabled  —  Yesterday, while looking through the Comdex news feeds, I stumbled across a Mini Mi 1000 HP product announcement from HP.  The Mini Mi retails from just $329.99 and ships with Mobile Internet, a “user-friendly, all-inclusive interface built on Linux”.
Richard Waters / Financial Times:
Microsoft's quest to beat Google  —  The consumer electronics and technology world is used to starting the year with a landmark presentation from one of the industry's leading figures.  —  That role has traditionally fallen to Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple, whose annual appearances …
Discussion: Silicon Alley Insider and Gizmodo
Owen Thomas / Gawker:
Liberal Blogosphere Proves Trivially Easy to Destroy  —  Freedom of the press belongs to those who own one.  After hackers took down SoapBlox, a one-man blog-hosting company which runs local political websites, a silenced liberal commentariat found out how true that was.
 
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 More Items: 
Saul Hansell / Bits:
C.E.S. Interview: Samsung's Jong Woo Park on Interactive TVs
Discussion: Techdirt
Reuters:
Panasonic and LG bet boldly on flatscreen TV growth
Angus Crawford / BBC:
UK e-mail law ‘attack on rights’
Zach Spear / AppleInsider:
Apple files patent for camera hidden behind display
Fox News:
French Parking Meters Call Cops When Time's Up
Discussion: Newlaunches.com
Todd Bishop / TechFlash:
Q&A: Microsoft's Robbie Bach on economy, Zune glitch and iPhone
Chris Mellor / The Register:
SanDisk flashes notebook flash
Discussion: GPS Obsessed, Engadget and eWeek
Sinead Carew / Reuters:
Touch-screen gadgets alienate blind
 Earlier Items: 
Nate Elliott / The Forrester Blog …:
The Easiest Way to a First-Page Ranking on Google
Ina Fried / Beyond Binary:
Ballmer: Google, Google, the economy, Google