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5:00 PM ET, February 11, 2010

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Google Acquires Aardvark For $50 million  —  Google has acquired social search service Aardvark, says a source that has been briefed on the deal, for around $50 million.  We first reported on the discussions between the two companies in December.  Those discussions have now turned into a signed deal …
Andrew Munchbach / Boy Genius Report:
Palm orders halt on production of Palm Pre, Palm Pre Plus, and Palm Pixis?  —  According to an OTR Global report, three different sources have confirmed that all future orders of the Palm Pre and Palm Pre Plus are being suspended as of Wednesday.  One of the sources said, “The decision is very sudden …
RELATED:
Nilay Patel / Engadget:
Debunk: Palm not halting Pre / Pixi production, just on hold for Chinese New Year
Discussion: EverythingPre
T3.com News:
Microsoft hints at Office for iPad  —  Microsoft has revealed to T3 that it may be ready to unleash a version of Office for Mac for the Apple iPad.  —  The Seattle-based company let slip the possibility of a suite for the new tablet during a demonstration of the brand new Office for Mac 2011 …
RELATED:
John Herrman / Gizmodo:
Office For Mac 2011 First Look: Ribbons, Sharing, and... Outlook?  —  Preemptive apologies to those of you who read Gizmodo to get away from work: Sorry!  Now pay attention: The next version of Office for Mac is on its way, and we've got a sneak peak.  —  There's been a funny disconnect …
Mark Mentovai / The Official Google Blog:
Bringing extensions to Google Chrome for Mac  —  As thousands of Mac fans and developers gather in San Francisco for this week's Macworld conference, we're particularly delighted to announce a new beta release of Chrome for Mac.  Today's release includes some of our most requested features …
Om Malik / GigaOM:
MySpace, R.I.P  —  It's not a good idea to speak ill of the dead.  It is OK, however, to speak the truth, however harsh it might seem, about the living dead.  —  Rupert Murdoch's $580 million MySpace purchase has outlived not only its utility, but has also finally hit its expiration date.
RELATED:
Jay Yarow / Silicon Alley Insider:
Google Paying Apple More Than $100 Million Annually For iPhone Search Deal (AAPL, GOOG)  —  The rumor that Apple is building its own search engine “isn't credible,” according to a source familiar with Apple's operations.  —  Our source tells us “there's too many options” for search on the market …
Peter Kafka / MediaMemo:
Veoh Finally Calls it Quits: Layoffs Yesterday, Bankruptcy Filing Soon  —  Veoh, one of several well-funded startups that have tried and failed to cash in on the Web video boom, is finally calling it quits.  The company let go of the remainder of its workforce yesterday …
Discussion: PE Hub Blog, The Next Web and Mashable!
Declan McCullagh / CNET News:
Feds push for tracking cell phones  —  Two years ago, when the FBI was stymied by a band of armed robbers known as the “Scarecrow Bandits” that had robbed more than 20 Texas banks, it came up with a novel method of locating the thieves.  —  FBI agents obtained logs from mobile phone companies corresponding …
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:
Zynga Buys Social Gaming Startup Serious Business  —  Zynga, the heavily-funded social gaming company, today announced that it has signed an agreement to acquire Serious Business, fellow creators of social games on Facebook.  The terms of the agreement were not disclosed …
Brent Schlender / Perspective:
Bill Gates Joins the iPad's Army of Critics.  Steve Jobs Couldn't Care Less.  —  With the sudden ridicule of Steve Jobs' new do-everything media player, Apple has abruptly become a ripe target for those who would like to take it down a notch.  The tsunami of criticism is probably excessive …
Bloomberg:
Microsoft Said to Be Among Suitors for Facebook Gaming Startup Crowdstar  —  Feb. 11 (Bloomberg) — Microsoft Corp. is among companies in talks to buy CrowdStar, the creator of games for social- networking site Facebook, according to two people familiar with the matter.
Anna Richardson / YouTube Blog:
Speed Matters: Introducing the YouTube Video Speed Dashboard  —  Your YouTube video speed can mean the difference between a fast and fun video viewing experience, or a slow and frustrating one.  That's why, today, we're launching a YouTube video speed dashboard to make the speed information available to you.
Jeremiah Owyang / Web Strategy:
Web Strategy Matrix: Google Buzz vs Facebook vs MySpace vs Twitter (Feb 2010)  —  Lack Of Signal In A Sea of Noise  —  There's an incredible amount of media and blogger noise about social networks, yet there are few viewpoints that are looking at the networks objectively minus the “killer app” hype.
Sean Michaels / Guardian:
Google shuts down music blogs  —  Bloggers told they have violated terms without further explanation, as years of archives are wiped off the internet  —  In what critics are calling “musicblogocide 2010”, Google has deleted at least six popular music blogs that it claims violated copyright law.
Stephen Chapman / MSFTKitchen:
Windows 8 to be “Completely Different” and “Mind-Blowing”  —  Over the course of the past week and a half, a couple of individuals from Microsoft have commented about Windows 8 in a rather excited manner.  First, there was a blog entry on January 31, 2010 (which has since then been deleted) …
Thomas Ricker / Engadget:
Garmin-Asus nuvifone A50 runs Android, knows where you are turn-by-turn  —  The long rumored Nuvifone jump to Android is here just as we get set to kick off Mobile World Congress next week.  Garmin and ASUS claim that the A50 brings “more location technology than any other smartphone” …
Mary Jo Foley / All about Microsoft:
Microsoft to push new piracy-detection update to Windows 7 users  —  Microsoft is planning to push to Windows 7 users a set of anti-piracy updates before the end of February.  —  Called the Windows Activation Technologies Update for Windows 7, the Windows Genuine patch is designed to detect …
Matt Burns / CrunchGear:
TiVo schedules a March 2nd NYC event and we'll be there  —  We've known that TiVo was cooking up something tasty for a bit now.  It could be the Premiere that leaked a few weeks back or something entirely different.  We really don't know at this point.  But what we do know is that we'll …
Larry Dignan / Between the Lines:
Motorola to split into two independent companies in 2011  —  Motorola on Thursday said it will split into two separate companies in the first quarter of 2011, roughly a year from now.  —  The company had initially planned to spin off the mobile devices unit on its own.
Discussion: PR Newswire, mocoNews and IntoMobile
Tom Warren / Neowin.net:
Pirate Bay co-founder launches social payments system - Flattr  —  Peter Sunde, co-founder of the popular BitTorrent tracker site The Pirate Bay, has launched a new service this week aiming to revolutionize how people pay and get paid for content on the internet.
Discussion: GigaOM, 901am, p2pnet, Erictric and Geek.com
Nick Summers / Techtonic Shifts:
Facebook Does Care What You Think About the Redesign — Sort Of  —  It's become the internet's most predictable phenomenon: whenever Facebook redesigns its site, users revolt by the millions.  Each major upgrade, from the 2006 introduction of its news feed to its 2009 redesign, has been a seismic event.
Philipp Lenssen / Google Blogoscoped:
On Potential Privacy Problems With Gmail Buzz Exposing Email Contacts  —  Nicholas Carlson of Business Insider calls Gmail Buzz's (apparently default-settings) exposure of some of those you are in contact with - by auto-suggesting people to follow, and displaying that list on your public profile - a “huge privacy flaw”:
Jonny Evans / 9 to 5 Mac:
Shazam for iPhone gets Last.fm, ticketing and more...  Shazam has added Last.fm integration, geolocation and concert ticket purchasing features to the company's high-end music identification and discovery products.  —  The move means iPhone and iPod touch users can get tour and gig ticket info …
Larry Dignan / Between the Lines:
Dell's acquisition of KACE: A smart move  —  Dell on Thursday acquired KACE, which makes systems management appliances, for an undisclosed sum and the deal adds up on many fronts.  —  Andrew Nusca has the breakdown of the deal and Dell's statement outlines the following:
John Gruber / Daring Fireball:
iBooks Isn't Bundled With iPad  —  Apple didn't emphasize this heavily at the introduction, but the iBooks app is not going to be bundled with the iPad — it's an app you download from the App Store, putting it on an (at least somewhat) equal footing to e-book readers from other companies.
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:
300,000,000 Downloads Later, OpenOffice Ships Version 3.2  —  The OpenOffice.org Community this morning announced the release of the latest version (3.2) of its personal productivity suite, and simultaneously announced that the software has been downloaded an impressive 300 million times in total since its public debut in April 2002.
Discussion: PRWeb, Erictric, Geek.com and Pocket-lint
 
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 More Items: 
Marisa Torrieri / TMCnet:
Investors Giving Billions for Mobile Broadband
Nielsen Wire:
Total Viewers Of Online Video Increased 5% Year-Over-Year
Michelle Maisto / eWeek:
Android, Smartphones Driving the Mobile Market, Says IDC
Discussion: IDC
Nick Bilton / Bits:
More Tools for Sifting Through Government Data
Gregg Keizer / InfoWorld:
Windows patch cripples XP with blue screen, users claim
Discussion: CNET News and Ars Technica
 Earlier Items: 
Andrew Warner / Mixergy:
How Y Combinator Helped 172 Startups Take Off - With Paul Graham
Michelle Megna / Enterprise Mobile Today:
BlackBerry OS: New BlackBerry Apps, MS Buying RIM?
Discussion: Daring Fireball
Jon Brodkin / Network World:
IBM's Jeopardy-playing machine can now beat human contestants
Discussion: Switched
Kelly Hodgkins / Boy Genius Report:
Motorola has an oopsie, Android 2.1 update for the DROID not rolling out this week?
Wall Street Journal:
IPad Magnifies Apple's Flash Feud
Discussion: NewTeeVee