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11:45 PM ET, January 18, 2009

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
John Biggs / CrunchGear:
Belkin replies to Mechanical Turk shilling  —  Belkin responded to the Mechanical Turk Shilling Incident (as it's now called around the office.)  Their response?  “We're sorry, we didn't know it was going on, and we're doing something about it.”  Read the full note from Belkin's President Mark Reynoso below.
Financial Times:
‘Extraordinary’ attack on Microsoft  —  By Richard Waters in San Francisco and Nikki Tait in Brussels  —  By reopening an old battle over Microsoft's dominance of the internet browser market, European regulators late last week took a controversial step that some legal and technology observers argued …
Discussion: Google Watch and Ars Technica
BBC:
New phone features ‘baffle users’  —  The complexity of modern mobile phones is leaving users frustrated and angry, research suggests.  —  Setting up a new handset is as challenging as changing bank accounts, said 61% of those interviewed.  —  Compiled by consultants Mformation …
Discussion: All About Symbian
Noam Cohen / New York Times:
Link by Link: Historical Photos in Web Archives Gain Vivid New Lives  —  IN barely 100 years, photography has gone from a magical, even mystical process, to an afterthought.  Nothing better captures how much of an afterthought photography is today than the banal miracle that is Flickr …
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Why Google Employees Quit  —  In 2008 Google HR set up a private Google Group to ask former employees why they left the company.  We've been forwarded what appears to be authentic posts to the thread by a number of ex-Googlers, which we reprint below minus identifying information other than their first names.
Aviv / MacBlogz:
Steve Wozniak Sheds Some Light On Steve Jobs' Health Issues (Video)  —  Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has been making rounds in the media weighing in on Steve Jobs' medical leave of absence with his own analysis.  The latest is a video interview on NBC where he mentions …
Paul Miller / Engadget:
Windows 7 Beta takes another crown, besting Vista in SSD performance  —  It's no huge surprise, since Microsoft was planning on improving performance on this front, but now we've got some of our first solid numbers on Windows 7 Beta SSD performance.  Nothing crazy spectacular …
Discussion: TweakTown
Alex Chitu / Google Operating System:
Text Ads in Google Image Search  —  After months of experimentation, Google choose to show text ads above image search results.  It's not clear if the ads are actually useful for those who visit Google Image Search to find images, but Google mentioned last year that the volume of commercial queries has increased significantly.
Discussion: Webmetricsguru
Paul Foy / Associated Press:
Technology to block phones in cars isn't foolproof  —  SALT LAKE CITY - Many parents would love to be able to give their teenagers a cell phone that couldn't be used while driving.  Now some inventors say they have come up with ways to make that possible, but they appear to be relying on wishful thinking.
Discussion: Identity Woman
Alex Chitu / Google Operating System:
Google Preferred Sites  —  Preferred Sites is a new experimental feature for Google Search that lets you personalize the results by adding a list of sites you want to appear more often when you search.  Based on your search history, Google suggests some frequently-visited sites, but you can add any other site.
Discussion: Webware.com and The Noisy Channel
Tony Ruscoe / Google Blogoscoped:
Will “Google Web Drive” Launch in 2009?  —  When asked to make a wish list for Google in 2009, many of you said you wanted the legendary “GDrive” product to be released.  Being the most eagerly anticipated Google product ever, with rumors literally going back years, could new evidence suggest …
Discussion: Download Squad and Googling Google
Richard Wilner / New York Post:
ANALYST IS APPLE LITE  —  One tech analyst, saying he is concerned about the strength of the executive team leading Apple, downgraded the company to “underperform” last Friday and cut his price target on the company's shares by more than 40 percent.  —  Mike Abramsky, who follows the Cupertino …
Discussion: Silicon Alley Insider
 
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Direct listing or IPO: What's the difference?  —  What's the best way to take a company public?  Recently a few larger, well-known brands, notably Spotify and Slack, have opted for the direct listing.  Read more.
Zoho:
7 Email marketing best practices for the holiday season  —  While holidays spell fun and frolic for some, for others they mean more work.  When it comes to email marketers, the holidays are a time to buckle up for increased marketing activity.
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What does the future of cloud computing hold  —  and what does this mean for businesses?  We looked at the data, talked to luminaries, and listened to customers across the world.  Here's what they said.
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Here's why gamers should go with a processor that has high IPC and can hit the highest frequencies  —  Adding core count for core count's sake does not create a better gaming experience
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 More Items: 
Stuart / Music Ally:
The seven hottest startups of MidemNet 2009
Erick Schonfeld / TechCrunch:
The TechCrunch Guide To The Inauguration
Discussion: GottaBeMobile.com and ReadWriteWeb
Stuart / Music Ally:
MidemNet 2009 Liveblog: Google's David Eun talks music
Discussion: paidContent.org
Bobbie Johnson / Guardian:
Does Wired's drastic weight loss point to ill health?
Tim Johnston / Washington Post:
Vietnamese Authorities Rein In the Country's Vigorous Blogosphere
 Earlier Items: 
Samuel Axon / Obsessable:
Seagate offers solution to 7200.11 hard drive failure epidemic