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4:40 PM ET, October 14, 2009


 Top Items: 
Olga Kharif / Business Week:
Wi-Fi Is About to Get a Whole Lot Easier  —  A consortium that includes Intel, Cisco, and Apple is set to release new technology called Wi-Fi Direct that will turn a slew of gadgets into hotspots  —  Going Wi-Fi is about to get a lot easier.  For many consumers, setting up an in-home Wi-Fi connection point is something of a hassle.
Wi-Fi Alliance:
Wi-Fi Alliance® announces groundbreaking specification to support direct Wi-Fi connections between devices  —  Upcoming Wi-Fi CERTIFIED™ Wi-Fi Direct program will make it easy to connect devices directly to one another in a new kind of Wi-Fi network
The Anti LumberJack / Gizmodo:
Barnes and Noble's E-Reader Like a Kindle/iPhone Chimera: First Photos and Details  —  Barnes and Noble's late to e-books.  But the company's new gadget—first seen here—should address the weaknesses of all other readers with multiple screens, each playing to tech strengths.
New York Times:
BlackBerry, Upgraded, Aims to Suit Every User  —  The Storm was supposed to be the smartphone that would keep Verizon Wireless customers from deserting to Apple's iPhone, which runs on AT&T's network.  —  Research In Motion, the company that created the BlackBerry phones that business users find …
Cade Metz / The Register:
Michael Dell: Netbooks go sour after 36 hours  —  You'll be happier if you give me more money  —  According to Michael Dell, a netbook is a dream purchase - until it's about 36 hours.  —  “If you take a user who's used to a 14- or 15-inch notebook and you say 'Here's a 10-inch netbook,' they're gonna say 'Hey, this is so fantastic.
Emil Protalinski / Ars Technica:
Sneak peek: Family Guy meets Windows 7  —  Microsoft has teamed up with Fox to deliver a 30-minute Family Guy comedy special on November 8.  Yes, you read that right: Seth MacFarlane and Alex Borstein have been tapped to market Windows 7, and we've got the sneak peek.
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:
Applause For Finland: First Country To Make Broadband Access A Legal Right  —  Kudos to the Finnish government, which has just introduced laws guaranteeing broadband access to every person living in Finland (5.5 million people, give or take).  —  This is reportedly a first worldwide.
Andrew Munchbach / Boy Genius Report:
Apple shipping iPhone 3GS' resistant to jailbreaking?  —  To be perfectly honest we're surprised it took this long.  Reports are surfacing that Apple is now shipping a new bootrom with the iPhone 3GS that is resistant to the 24kpwn exploit used by the Dev-Team and others to jailbreak the iPhone.
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
The New Technorati  —  Technorati relaunched its site tonight, changing and adding key features.  Most notable is an expanded and fresher top 100 blogs list, and a new feature that lets authors post their content directly to the site.  —  In 2007 Technorati redesigned the look and functionality of its home page three times.
Mark Wilson / Gizmodo:
Walmart Offering $45 Unlimited Cellphone Plan Nationwide  —  Walmart has been beta testing their exclusive Straight Talk no-contract wireless service for months, but now the retailer will offer two low-cost wireless plans nationwide starting October 18th, including an unlimited plan for just $45.
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Striving For Four Billion Mobile Users, Twitter Strikes SMS Deal With Largest Indian Carrier  —  In the U.S., many of us use Twitter through its website or through a third-party client that uses its APIs.  But an original key to Twitter, and one that remains very important to reaching the widest possible audience, is text messaging.
Brad Stone / New York Times:
Still Hoping to Sell Music by the Month  —  SAN FRANCISCO — The idea of selling monthly subscriptions to a vast catalog of online music has met with only limited success.  That isn't stopping a new batch of entrepreneurs from trying to make it work.  —  The latest and perhaps …
Jeff Atwood / Coding Horror:
The State of Solid State Hard Drives  —  I've seen a lot of people play The Computer Performance Shell Game poorly.  They overinvest in a fancy CPU, while pairing it with limited memory, a plain jane hard drive, or a generic video card.  For most users, that fire-breathing quad-core CPU …
Chad / That Smith:
Google Wave Add-on for Firefox  —  Google probably isn't going to be happy about this, but I present to you the first ever Google Wave Notifier... for Firefox.  —  This add-on reuses code from my other add-on, the Google Voice Add-on for Firefox (I'm great with names).
Theo Valich / Bright Side Of News:
nVidia Tegra wins contract for next-gen Nintendo DS  —  When Jen-Hsun Huang, co-founder and CEO of nVidia announced that he expects to see Tegra capturing 50% of nVidia's revenue within the next couple of years, a lot of people thought that this is a smoke screen to sway the attention from its battles against AMD and Intel.
Laura June / Engadget:
Acer: we'll overtake Dell as world's number two PC maker... soon  —  Acer's President Gianfranco Lanci is talking some big talk these days, but not completely without reason.  The Taiwan-based computer manufacturer says it does not expect to see a decline in revenue this year over last …
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch Europe:
Joost UK dissolves, office furniture already in the hands of another startup  —  The once immensely hyped and heavily-funded video company Joost continues its unceremonious journey to the deadpool.  —  TechCrunch Europe has learnt that the startup, famously co-founded by Skype founders Janus Friis …
Discussion: NewTeeVee, Reuters and BoomTown, Thanks:mgcreed
Ben Sillis /
Acer Android smartphone hands-on!  —  UPDATE: The Acer Android smartphone is the A1, and it comes with Android version 1.6 - AKA Donut.  Acer's talking about it right now at its London prezzer, so more details to come.  —  UPDATE 2: Acer's dancing to two different tunes here.
Dan Nosowitz / Gizmodo:
Next-Generation Flip MinoHD: Sleeker Design, Double the Memory  —  The newest Flip MinoHD was just announced, and it's a lot like the first-gen, but with upgrades all around.  You've got double the memory, a much sleeker aluminum design, bigger screen and HDMI port.  Sweet!
Philip Elmer-DeWitt / Brainstorm Tech:
Is Steve Jobs more popular than Jesus?  —  Apple's CEO tops two polls in one week.  Will no one rid us of these meddlesome lists?  —  Photo: Apple Inc.  —  Last Thursday, Oct. 8, an Agenda Setters panel named Steve Jobs the most influential individual in the global technology industry …
Nate Anderson / Ars Technica:
The Internet is about to die.  Literally die!  —  In 2007, Nemertes Research released a dire report on Internet traffic.  By 2010, it said, the “exponential” growth in demand for bandwidth will butt up against the “linear” investment in networking technology, and that whole Internet thing you've come …
Claire Cain Miller / Bits:
Shazam's Newest Fan Is Kleiner Perkins's iFund  —  For cellphone owners, Shazam has abolished the nagging question about which song is playing.  Its cellphone application lets people simply hold the phone toward the source of the music to identify it.  —  It will soon be able to do a lot more …
Dean Takahashi / VentureBeat:
Virtual goods sales to hit $1 billion in 2009 as social games pay off big  —  Thanks to the astonishing growth of games on social networks such as Facebook and MySpace, the U.S. virtual goods market is poised to clear $1 billion in revenues in 2009, more than doubling from a year earlier, according to a new report.
Jennifer Martinez / GigaOM:
Aardvark to Answer More Questions With  —  Aardvark today expanded its answer service beyond its iPhone and instant messenger application offerings with the launch of, a social search web site.  Unlike Yelp and Yahoo Answers, Aardvark's service lets you tap into your social graph to get answers to your questions.
Jason Kincaid / TechCrunch:
Dropbox Acquires The Domain Everyone Thought It Had:  —  At TechCrunch we've been big fans of Dropbox for a long time now — the company launched at 2008's TechCrunch50, we use the service to share images and documents on a daily basis, and we're even impressed by the demo video …
Jason Kincaid / TechCrunch:
TC50 Winner RedBeacon Is Now Live In The Bay Area  —  The wait is finally over, at least for those lucky TechCrunch readers in the Bay Area.  Today, TechCrunch50 winner RedBeacon is opening its doors to San Francisco and the surrounding area, allowing users to submit requests …
Farhad Manjoo / Slate:
The Google Wave chatting tool is too complicated for its own good.  —  Here's a little story to show just how thoroughly Google's long-awaited chatting tool, called Google Wave, can kill your mood to chat: The other day, I was “waving” with Zach Frechette, the editor of GOOD magazine.
Oliver Lindberg /
The secrets of Google's design team  —  Google's Director of User Experience reveals all  —  When Google's renowned visual design lead, Douglas Bowman, left the search giant at the end of March, he wrote a passionate blog post about his reasons for quitting.
Discussion: Search Engine Land
Karl Bode / DSLreports:
Time Warner Cable Announces Wireless Broadband - Mobile WiMax goes live in North Carolina December 1  —  As expected given their investment into Clearwire and Sprint's Mobile WiMax joint venture, Time Warner Cable today announced plans to offer wireless broadband service.
Blogger / Dial-a-Phone:
Motorola Comeback Plan Revealed  —  With all that talk about the Motorola Sholes, Tao, A855 going on, we decided it was time for a little bit of digging.  And look what we've stumbled across, only Motorola's Q4 2009 and Q1 2010 Roadmap!  —  The Roadmap shows Motorola's Medium and Higher Tier Social Smartphones.
Jenna Wortham / Bits:
Digg's Vote-for-Ads Experiment Is Raising Revenue  —  When the social news site Digg introduced sponsored links into its main news flow this summer, the company knew it was taking a gamble.  Would the notoriously rambunctious community revolt or boycott the site for cluttering up its news feed with advertisements?
Discussion: the Econsultancy blog
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 More Items: 
Ali / Sunlight Labs:
Redesigning the Government: FCC
Discussion: Tech Daily Dose and The Hill
Kim-Mai Cutler / VentureBeat:
TheFind launches “buying engine,” product search from 500,000 stores
Boston Globe:
Using cellphones to change the world
Ross Miller / Engadget:
Acer's 11.6-inch Timeline 1810T gets ceremonious christening, Oct. 22nd launch date
Robert MacMillan / Reuters:
Thomson Reuters to buy Breakingviews
Discussion: paidContent
 Earlier Items: 
Kara Swisher / BoomTown:
Exclusive: Skype Founders Keep on Punching-File Injunction Against Volpi and Index
Discussion: GigaOM, Thanks:atul
Max Colchester / Wall Street Journal:
The French Get Lost in the Clouds Over a New Term in the Internet Age
Nicolas Mertens / The Next Web:
Tweetmeme takes in half of 3rd-party Twitter traffic
Maggie Shiels / BBC:
US city to start giant ‘mapathon’
Discussion: Fast Company and
Leena Rao / TechCrunch:
As Facebook Nears 100M U.S. Visitors, Twitter Falls Further Behind …
Discussion: and MediaFile