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12:40 PM ET, August 27, 2010

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Kim-Mai Cutler / TechCrunch:
Microsoft To Pay More Than Half A Billion Dollars To Jump-Start Windows Phone 7  —  Editor's note: The following guest post is by Kim-Mai Cutler.  —  Nearly four years after Apple launched the iPhone and two years after Google open-sourced the code for its Android operating system …
RELATED:
Mary Jo Foley / All about Microsoft Blog:
A billion to launch Windows Phone 7?  I bet Microsoft is paying a lot more  —  Combining guesswork with analyst estimates, TechCrunch is reporting that Microsoft may spend as much as a billion dollars to launch and develop Windows Phone 7 in its first year.  —  Microsoft, as you'd expect, isn't commenting on that figure.
Miguel Helft / New York Times:
Developer of Tablets Loses Apple as Customer  —  SAN FRANCISCO — Apple severed ties with a small Silicon Valley design firm that for nearly a decade had helped with the development of some of its products, after the firm showcased its own prototype tablet computer.
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Jeremy Horwitz / iLounge:
Brand New Details On the iPod touch 4G  —  According to a source who would have reason to know, the fourth-generation iPod touch is changing back shapes—sorry, readers who have been posting with love for the dome-like curved iPod touch 2G/3G back, but that's going away.
RELATED:
Eric Slivka / MacRumors:
Leaked Case Design Suggests iPod Nano May Gain Smaller Square Form Factor
Emily Wood / The Official Google Blog:
Find out what's hot on search with the Google Beat  —  Every day, there are more than a billion searches for information on Google.  Have you ever wondered what those searches are about—or whether what you're searching for also happens to be on the minds of millions of others across the country?
Peter Kirn / Create Digital Motion:
Apple-Centric Observers Get the Facts Wrong: H.264 Still Ain't Free  —  Addendum to the previous story: an “end user” and an “application” are not the same thing.  Watching comments from some users dumping on Firefox and Opera because they don't understand this is painful.
Erick Schonfeld / TechCrunch:
Index Ventures Buys Into Etsy, Triples Valuation To Nearly $300 Million  —  Crafty commerce site Etsy just raised another $20 million in its fifth venture round (that would be the Series E).  Index Ventures is the new investor leading the round, with partner Danny Rimer getting an observer's seat on the board.
Miguel Helft / New York Times:
Charges Settled Over Fake Reviews on iTunes  —  SAN FRANCISCO — Savvy Internet users know that glowing online reviews of things like books or restaurants can't always be trusted.  But federal regulators are giving notice that if you stand to gain financially from the review you are writing, you should be up front about it.
Leena Rao / TechCrunchIT:
The Bidding War For 3PAR Continues; HP Offers $2 Billion In Cash  —  Here we go again-again.  HP just offered $2 billion, or $30 per share in cash for data storage company 3PAR.  This morning, Dell announced that 3PAR had accepted its increased offer to acquire the storage leader for $27 per share in cash …
Paul Lamkin / Pocket-lint:
ViewSonic Android tablet: Pictures emerge  —  Earlier this week, we at Pocket-lint brought you the news that ViewSonic is planning a big (well, little in size but big in attitude) tablet launch at IFA.  —  And now we've been sent these pics from our inside man, showing off a ViewSonic tablet in all of its glossy glory.
Carl Sjogreen / Facebook Developer Blog:
Social From the Ground Up  —  At Facebook, we are huge believers in what a small dedicated team with a unique perspective can accomplish.  We've already seen how a group of startups who built social interactions into the core of their product experience have completely changed how people play games online …
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Jason Kincaid / TechCrunch:
Facebook To Begin Giving Y Combinator Startups VIP Treatment
Discussion: VentureBeat and GigaOMGigaOM
Pete Warden / HubSpot:
The March Of Twitter: Analysis of How And Where Twitter Spread  —  To answer that question I created a visual history of Twitter's growth, feeding data from Dharmesh Shah (developer of TwitterGrader.com) into OpenHeatMap to produce an animated visualization of the service's growth …
Discussion: Guardian and PeteSearch, Thanks:atul
Om Malik / GigaOM:
Apple Upgrades iWork, Gives ePub a Boost  —  It is pretty clear by now that Apple's iWork productivity suite is an acquired taste.  But soon, folks who are interested in publishing their content in the ePub format — an open eBook standard — might just develop a taste for it.
Tony Bradley / Computerworld:
Putting Google Realtime to Real-World Use  —  Google added new functionality to its real-time search engine, and moved it from an obscure feature buried in the options on the left pane of the standard Google search, to its own Web site.  The new Google Realtime can be a powerful tool for businesses that know how to use it.
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Danny Sullivan / Search Engine Land:
Google Realtime Search Gets Home Page, Conversation View, Alerts & Geosearch
Stuart Parmenter / The Mozilla Blog:
Fennec Alpha Released for Android and Nokia N900  —  The Alpha release of the next major version of Fennec is now available for Android and Nokia N900 users to download and test.  Fennec (codename for Firefox mobile) is the first mobile browser to offer add-ons and is built on the same technology that powers desktop Firefox.
Alex Chitu / Google Operating System:
Don't Click this Button in Google Voice!  —  Warning: This tip is only for Gmail users outside US.  —  Google says that the latest Gmail feature that allows you to make phone calls is only available in the US, but that's not true.  If you set Gmail's interface language to English (US) …
Discussion: Download Squad, Techdows and calliflower.com, Thanks:rawmeet
RELATED:
Join Diaspora Blog:
An Overdue Update  —  Since August is nearly over, it is time for an update and answers to some questions.  We have been coding.  We have Diaspora working, we like it, and it will be open-sourced on September 15th.  —  We are spending a good chunk of time concentrating on building clear, contextual sharing.
RELATED:
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Diaspora Three Weeks Away From Unveiling Open-Source Facebook Alternative
Discussion: Mashable!
Greg Sandoval / CNET News:
Netflix soars as Blockbuster plans bankruptcy  —  Remember walking the aisles to find a movie?  Those days appear to be ending.  —  As if fights for survival, video-rental chain Blockbuster is preparing to file bankruptcy next month, according to a report in the Los Angeles Times.
Jason Kincaid / TechCrunch:
SCVNGR Launches Support For Facebook Places  —  Location-based game SCVNGR has had a big week of news, first with its partnership with AT&T and then the release of its secret social mechanics playdeck.  Today the company has announced that it now sports full integration with the recently …
Discussion: ReadWriteWeb, BoomTown and PSFK
 
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 More Items: 
Larry Dignan / Between the Lines Blog:
Intel cuts outlook; Consumer PC demand weak
Mark Sweney / Guardian:
YouTube UK set to launch free movie channel
Scott Austin / Venture Capital Dispatch:
Kleiner Perkins Sitting Pretty In Event Of ArcSight Sale
Discussion: Wall Street Journal and DealBook
Help Net Security:
25% of new worms are designed to spread through USB devices
Discussion: eWeek and Computerworld
Adam DuVander / ProgrammableWeb:
Yahoo Okays Revenue Streams in its Social Streams
Ivaylo Popov / Google Code Blog:
Google Buzz API adds Track and some improvements
Discussion: SiliconANGLE, Thanks:chrismessina
Jaikumar Vijayan / Computerworld:
FTC drops P2P file sharing probe of LimeWire
Discussion: ReadWriteWeb
 Earlier Items: 
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Facebook's “Platmobile” Team Working On Eliminating Mobile Password Entry
Joseph Tartakoff / paidContent:
Yahoo Revs Up Its Local Content Efforts
Caroline McCarthy / CNET News:
Digg's Matt Van Horn leaving for start-up Path
Discussion: TechCrunch, Thanks:atul
Matthew Dolan / Wall Street Journal:
Ford Uses Wi-Fi to Customize Cars
Ina Fried / CNET News:
Exchange ActiveSync to arrive on Hotmail on Monday
Peter Kafka / MediaMemo:
Google Goes Hunting for a Music Boss