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3:40 PM ET, April 28, 2009

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Brier Dudley / Seattle Times:
Microsoft debuts Vine in Seattle: Twitter+Facebook on steroids  —  It's been awhile since Microsoft introduced a game-changing social Web application, but Vine — a service that's debuting today with a beta test in Seattle — could be a contender.  —  Vine is a hyperlocal, personalized message and alert system.
RELATED:
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Microsoft Vine To Connect Family, Friends When Crisis Hits  —  Microsoft is launching a new product into private beta on Tuesday morning with the aim of keeping friends and family in touch during emergencies.  The idea for product, called Microsoft Vine, came to Microsoft GM Public Safety …
Zach Epstein / Boy Genius Report:
Microsoft and Verizon reportedly cooking up an iPhone competitor  —  Just what the world needs... Another iPhone killer.  If the Wall Street Journal's report is to be believed, it looks like that USA Today story may have omitted a relatively important detail regarding Verizon's “iPhone” offering — it might not be an iPhone at all.
RELATED:
Dan Frommer / Silicon Alley Insider:
Microsoft Planning iPhone Rival  —  Microsoft (MSFT) can finally stop denying its plans to get into the cellphone business.  The company is working with Verizon Wireless to launch an iPhone rival early next year, the WSJ reports.  —  There's a good chance this will flop …
Jenna Wortham / Bits:
Apple iPhone Owners Favor Personal Uses, Not Business  —  Do you treat your iPhone as a guilty pleasure?  You're not alone.  —  A new report from Compete surveying the behavior of 600 smartphone users found that 73 percent of iPhone owners used their mobile devices primarily for personal reasons, such as entertainment.
RELATED:
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:   iPhone Owners Don't Use Their Devices For Work? Yeah, Right.
Jason Kincaid / TechCrunch:
Mint Turns Personal Finance Into A Game.  It's Better Than It Sounds  —  Mint, the popular personal finance site that won 2007's TechCrunch40, is launching a new feature called “Financial Fitness” which, strange as it may sound, adds an element of gaming to the service.
VentureBeat:
Verizon flirts with Apple, but Android is already girlfriend material  —  There's been lots of speculation that Verizon, the largest U.S. phone network, is flirting with Apple, with the idea of introducing an iPhone on Verizon's network next year.  —  Verizon is building out a new fourth …
RELATED:
Stacey Higginbotham / GigaOM:
Why We Don't Believe Rumors of an Apple/Verizon Love Child
Microsoft:
Office Service Pack 2 A Significant Stability, Performance and Interoperability Upgrade  —  Q&A: Group Program Manager Jane Liles talks about the enhancements now available through Service Pack 2 for the 2007 Microsoft Office system.  —  As part of its efforts to continually improve …
Chris Davies / SlashGear:
Upcoming Averatec 10-inch netbook may use Android  —  Averatec are developing a new netbook that is “a merger of cellphone and PC technology”, prompting speculation that the company will use Android as the budget ultraportable's OS.  Company CEO Tae-Hyun “Tiger” Cho has described the OS as …
RELATED:
The Boy Genius / Boy Genius Report:
BlackBerry Tour hitting Verizon Wireless in July?  —  BlackBerry Tour?  Oh yeah.  Now that that's been confirmed, we're on to bigger and better things — release dates!  The latest information we've heard is that the BlackBerry Tour is shaping up to be released on Verizon in the month of July.
Darren Waters / BBC:
Home Office ‘colluded with Phorm’  —  The Home Office has been accused of colluding with online ad firm Phorm on “informal guidance” to the public on whether the company's service is legal.  —  E-mails between the ministry and Phorm show the department asking if the firm would be “comforted” by its position.
Matt Buchanan / Gizmodo:
Dell Studio 19 Multitouch All-in-One Arrives in US of A for $699, No Signs of Swine Flu  —  Six weeks after Dell's multitouch Studio 19 all-in-one hit Japan, it's finally coming to the US.  Despite my penchant for mocking Dell's designers, if you're looking for a non-iMac all-in-one, it's worth a shot.
Camille Ricketts / VentureBeat:
Coming soon: A new, smarter Google News?  —  Google may be working on a new, intelligent news distribution system, according to Sharon Waxman, a reporter for Hollywood newsblog TheWrap.  She approached chief executive Eric Schmidt at a soiree thrown by Arianna Huffington last week …
Nicole Loux / The Mozilla Blog:
Firefox 3.5 Beta 4 now available for download!  —  Editor's note: Mozilla released Firefox 3.5 beta 4 on Monday, April 27, 2009 at 5:22 pm PT. Check out the Mozilla Developer News announcement reposted below for more details.  —  Please note: Firefox 3.5 Beta 4 is a public preview release intended …
Amol Sharma / Digits:
Report: iPhone Users Spend 9.6 Minutes per App  —  Greystripe, an ad network for mobile applications and games, has a new report showing how consumers are using free iPhone applications.  —  Associated Press  —  A Macworld poster touting iPhone apps  —  Among the interesting findings:
Thanks:atul
Robert / Wakoopa blog:
The State of Apps - Q1 2009  —  I'm happy to announce the release of the inaugural edition of our quarterly software trends report, named The State of Apps.  —  Since we started with Wakoopa, we've acquired over 525 million hours of software usage data from 75,000 members.
Discussion: TechCrunch, GigaOM and VentureBeat
Emel Mutlu / Inside AdWords:
New “Google for Advertisers” site has launched  —  We're excited to announce the launch of Google for Advertisers.  Google for Advertisers is a place where we've brought together information about the broad range of our marketing solutions — and where you can explore and discover the combination …
Discussion: Search Engine Watch and WebProNews
Reuters:
IBM raises dividend, to buy back more shares  —  NEW YORK (Reuters) - IBM's board on Tuesday raised its dividend by 10 percent and authorized an additional $3 billion worth of share buybacks, underscoring the technology company's relative strength even in a weak economy.
John Leyden / The Register:
Loudmouth workers leaking data through social networking sites  —  Twitter ye not  —  Free whitepaper - WS_FTP Server product demonstration  —  Almost two-thirds (63 per cent) of sys administrators fear that workers share too much personal information through social networking websites …
Discussion: Donna's SecurityFlash
Ryan Paul / Ars Technica:
With no $10 laptop in sight, India buys 250,000 OLPCs  —  India has purchased 250,000 XO laptops.  This move will boost the One Laptop Per Child project and could help the deflating effort get back on its feet.  —  The government of India has signed an agreement with the One Laptop Per Child …
Sarah Rabil / Bloomberg:
Time Warner May Say It's Nearing AOL Resolution, Unwinding Failed Merger  —  Time Warner Inc. may tell investors tomorrow it is close to a resolution on AOL that would unwind the failed 2001 merger and enable the company to focus on films and cable-television assets.
Electronista:
Nokia to shrink online services, cut 450 jobs  —  Nokia this morning took extra steps to improve its finances and said it would scale back the development of its online services.  Calling it a new “focus,” the Finland-based company plans to draw more heavily on third parties for its image …
Discussion: BetaNews and Agence France Presse
Jason Kincaid / TechCrunch:
Quub: A Micromessaging Service That Asks “What Are You Doing?”  And Means It  —  At its core, Twitter is supposed to be a micro-presence service that invites users to answer the question, “What are you doing?”.  That's all well and good, but most people tend to ignore this question entirely …
Larry Dignan / Between the Lines:
Zoho preps mobile suite  —  Zoho on Tuesday rolled out a unified mobile front for its suite of Web applications.  —  Zoho had offered some basic iPhone and Windows Mobile support previously, but now is unifying applications like Mail, Calendar, Writer, Sheet, Show & Creator into one interface.
Ina Fried / CNET News:
‘Linux Defenders’ aim at Microsoft patents  —  A Linux advocacy group on Tuesday said it is publicly seeking invention data that could help overturn three Microsoft patents that the software maker has charged are infringed by some implementations of the Linux kernel.
Randall C. Kennedy / Randall C. Kennedy's blog:
Windows 7's ‘XP mode’: Right idea, wrong technology  —  Why Microsoft's decision to implement a VM-based legacy compatibility solution is a dumb move  —  Well, it finally happened.  After years of patching and tweaking the Windows runtime to preserve backward compatibility …
Discussion: Hardware 2.0
Mike Schramm / TUAW:
Dept. of deja vu: MacBookMini found in Adium stats  —  Reader Josh sent along this little note — nothing too important, just something for you to file away for future reference.  He just wanted us to point out that way, way down in the stats for Adium, the IM client for everyone who's not using iChat …
 
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 More Items: 
New York Times:
U.S. Steps Up Effort on Digital Defenses
David Barboza / New York Times:
In China, Knockoff Cellphones Are a Hit
Discussion: Gizmodo and TG Daily
Mark Prigg / This Is London:
Hello Wembley, I'm on my iPhone
 Earlier Items: 
Liz Gannes / NewTeeVee:
As Hulu Gets More Mainstream, Long Viewing Sessions Wane
Discussion: Contentinople
Jacqui Cheng / Ars Technica:
RapidShare hands over user info in Germany, users panic
Discussion: p2pnet, Pulse2 and Music Ally
Emily Chung / CBC News:
Who will cash in on Canada's love for online video?
Discussion: HipMojo.com
Erick Schonfeld / TechCrunch:
Socialthing Starts Spreading Across 75 AOL Sites
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Keep It Simple, Stupid
Discussion: Daggle
Bruce Schneier / Wall Street Journal:
Do You Know Where Your Data Is?  —  Do you know what your data did last night?
Jason Scott / ASCII:
Geocities: Lessons So Far
Discussion: hughstimson.org