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1:40 PM ET, July 12, 2010

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
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.
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 …
Mary Jo Foley / ZDNet:
Microsoft launches a CRM app store
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.
RELATED:
Robert Miller / The Big Blog:
Fring's mis-use of Skype software was damaging to our brand and reputation  —  An hour or so ago, Fring reported on their blog that we had blocked their access to Skype.  I want to make one thing absolutely clear: this is untrue.  —  Fring was using Skype software in a way it wasn't designed to be used …
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 …
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:
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.
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 …
John Cook / TechFlash:
The venture capital well is running dry ... for the VCs  —  Entrepreneurs aren't the only ones struggling to find capital in these choppy economic times.  The venture capitalists who write the checks are encountering their own hard realities on the fundraising trail.
Discussion: GigaOM
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
 
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 More Items: 
Monica Chen / DigiTimes:
Pegatron reportedly lands Apple desktop orders; announces June results
Discussion: 9 to 5 Mac, Geek.com and Cult of Mac
Nicholas Deleon / TechCrunch:
NOOKstudy: B & Ns' Foray Into The Education Market
Owen Fletcher / Digits:
Apple's Wi-Fi-Enabled iPhone Clears a Hurdle in China
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
My Fantasy Foursquare Life
Michael Cooney / Network World:
Researchers tout new weapon in Internet censorship arms race
Kevin Poulsen / Threat Level:
FBI Raids ‘Electronik 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
 Earlier Items: 
Todd Hoff / High Scalability:
So, Why is Twitter Really Not Using Cassandra to Store Tweets?
Discussion: Mashable!
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
Kevin Lisota / TechFlash:
How Google's buy of ITA signals where it's headed in real estate
Aron Trimble / TUAW:
How To: Use iPhone 4 data plan with iPad 3G
Nate Anderson / Ars Technica:
FCC broadband plan will put US in “second tier of countries”
Discussion: Fast Company
Randall Stross / New York Times:
Computers at Home: Educational Hope vs. Teenage Reality