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12:25 PM ET, July 12, 2010

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Steve Lohr / New York Times:
Google's Do-It-Yourself App Creation Software  —  Google is bringing Android software development to the masses.  —  The company will offer a software tool, starting Monday, that is intended to make it easy for people to write applications for its Android smartphones.
RELATED:
Mark Friedman / The Official Google Blog:
App Inventor for Android  —  App Inventor is a new tool in Google Labs that makes it easy for anyone—programmers and non-programmers, professionals and students—to create mobile applications for Android-powered devices.  And today, we're extending invitations to the general public.
Mary Jo Foley / ZDNet:
Microsoft's Ballmer: Windows 7 slates are coming this year  —  Microsoft isn't going to sit idly by and let slates from Apple and various Android backers run away with this market.  —  Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer told the 14,000 partners during his July 12 keynote at the Worldwide Partner Conference …
RELATED:
Todd Bishop / TechFlash:
Microsoft's new Windows Azure ‘appliance’ to be tested by eBay  —  Microsoft is looking spread the reach of its fledgling Windows Azure cloud-computing initiative with the announcement of a “platform appliance” that its industry partners and large customers will be able to use to run …
Claire Cain Miller / New York Times:
Techmeme Offers Tech News at Internet Speed  —  SAN FRANCISCO — News lovers in Washington can't live without Mike Allen at Politico.  Hollywood squabbles over the relative merits of Sharon Waxman's TheWrap versus Nikki Finke's Deadline.  The newspaper industry reads the news collected by Jim Romenesko.
Niraj Sheth / Wall Street Journal:
Shortages of Phone Hindering Sprint 4G  —  Sprint Nextel Corp.'s big bet on its super-fast 4G network is running into stronger-than-expected head winds, Chief Executive Dan Hesse said in an interview.  —  Sprint is still the only U.S. carrier with a 4G network, which offers users faster speeds for data and video.
RELATED:
Consumer Reports Electronics Blog:
Lab tests: Why Consumer Reports can't recommend the iPhone 4  —  Lab test: Apple iPhone 4 design defect confirmed  —  It's official.  Consumer Reports' engineers have just completed testing the iPhone 4, and have confirmed that there is a problem with its reception.
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:
Skype Blocks, Threatens To Sue Fring (Update: Skype Says Fring Is Lying)  —  Late last week, mobile communication services provider fring released an updated iPhone app that enabled iPhone 4 owners to engage in unrestricted 2-way video calling over Wi-Fi or 3G internet with other iPhone, Android or Symbian devices.
Daniel Emery / BBC:
Facebook unveils child safety ‘panic button’  —  Facebook has announced it will allow a “panic button” application on its social networking site.  —  The button, aimed at children and teenagers, will report abuse to the UK Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (Ceop) and Facebook.
Research In Motion / Inside BlackBerry:
BlackBerry 6: Another Sneak Peek  —  In the almost ten years I've worked at Research In Motion (RIM), I've never been as excited about a BlackBerry® software launch as I am for BlackBerry 6, which is on track for release this summer.  I'm absolutely in love with the BlackBerry 6 experience …
Steve Souders / High Performance Web Sites:
Diffable: only download the deltas  —  There were many new products and projects announced at Velocity, but one that I just found out about is Diffable.  It's ironic that I missed this one given that it happened at Velocity and is from Google.  The announcement was made during a whiteboard talk, so it didn't get much attention.
Discussion: techno.blog
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Apple Rolls Out Four More iPhone 4 Ads — Each About FaceTime  —  Yesterday, I broke down Apple's minute-long FaceTime commercial for iPhone 4, noting how it seemed almost as if Don Draper from the hit AMC show Mad Men had created it.  Now Apple has four other 30-second spots for the iPhone 4 …
Henry Blodget / Silicon Alley Insider:
Google Working On Secret New Ad Format: “Interactive Video Ads”  —  Google is still casting around trying to find another revenue stream that will carry the company now that search is maturing.  —  The latest idea?  —  “Interactive video ads.”  —  Eric Schmidt pitched the idea …
Leena Rao / TechCrunch:
Boom!  Foursquare Crosses 2 Million Users  —  It appears that Foursquare has just crossed the 2 million users mark this morning.  The location based social network has been growing fast, adding 100,000 users per week.  Only three months ago, Foursquare passed one million users after taking a year to accumulate one million members.
Discussion: Xconomy and Softpedia News
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
My Fantasy Foursquare Life  —  I've had a very full schedule recently.  Last Sunday I was in Amsterdam.  On Monday I was “on a boat” off the coast of Texas and then zipped over to Dubai to check out the Ritz-Carlton hotel.  By Wednesday I was in New York visiting the Foursquare offices.
Discussion: Virtual Worlds News
Kevin C. Tofel / GigaOM:
BlackBerry Launches Protect.  Service Finds Lost Handsets, Saves Data  —  Research In Motion today introduced a limited beta of BlackBerry Protect, a free service to protect personal data in the case of a lost handset.  With BlackBerry Protect, a consumer can remotely wipe data, lock the device …
 
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 More Items: 
Owen Fletcher / Digits:
Apple's Wi-Fi-Enabled iPhone Clears a Hurdle in China
Michael Cooney / Network World:
Researchers tout new weapon in Internet censorship arms race
Kevin Poulsen / Threat Level:
FBI Raids ‘Elektronic Tribulation Army’ Over Witness Intimidation
Susanna G. Kim / New York Times:
Stimulus Projects Bring Broadband to Disconnected
Colin Barras / New Scientist:
Innovation: Shrewd search engines know what you want
Todd Hoff / High Scalability:
So, Why is Twitter Really Not Using Cassandra to Store Tweets?
Discussion: Mashable! and The Next Web
Ian Betteridge / Technovia:
The era of simplified computing
Discussion: BetaNews
Kevin J. O'Brien / New York Times:
Germans Embrace Socializing Online Despite Government Efforts to Protect Them
 Earlier Items: 
Kevin Lisota / TechFlash:
How Google's buy of ITA signals where it's headed in real estate
Nate Anderson / Ars Technica:
FCC broadband plan will put US in “second tier of countries”
Randall Stross / New York Times:
Computers at Home: Educational Hope vs. Teenage Reality
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Elon Musk: “Why Owen Thomas Is Silicon Valley's Jayson Blair”
Dave Winer / Scripting News:
Guy would have enjoyed this  —  Facebook does some really smart stuff …