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10:40 PM ET, December 23, 2010

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Tony Bates / The Big Blog:
Another update: Skype stabilized  —  I wanted to continue to update you on the status of the outage.  We've been able to successfully stabilize Skype due to the dedicated supernodes deployed by Skype's engineering team.  We're at roughly 90 percent of normal user volumes.  —  Audio, video and IM are running normally.
RELATED:
Abby Sewell / L.A. Times Tech Blog:
Skype CEO says company may offer credit vouchers to paying customers  —  Skype CEO Tony Bates told users in a video message posted on the company's website Thursday that the online calling service is considering giving credit vouchers to paying customers who have been affected by the major service outage that began Wednesday morning.
Dan York / Disruptive Telephony:
Understanding Today's Skype Outage: Explaining Supernodes
Facebook:
What's on your mind?  —  People use status updates to share what's on their minds, to tell others what they're doing, and to gather feedback from friends.  The different ways people use status updates form some interesting patterns.  In this study, we looked at the usage of words in different “word categories” in status updates.
Discussion: VatorNews
RELATED:
Marshall Kirkpatrick / ReadWriteWeb:
On Facebook, Angry People Are More Popular (Plus Other Fascinating Statistical Correlations)  —  Facebook's data team proved once again today that when you analyze a large set of anonymous user data from the world's biggest social network, you can learn some very interesting things about the state of humanity.
Alexia Tsotsis / TechCrunch:
Google And NORAD Team Up Once Again To Track Santa  —  Needed any more sign that Christmas is upon us?  The annual Google and North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) partnership to track Jolly Saint Nick is back in action, starting tomorrow at 2:00 am EST despite the fact …
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:
Apple Trademarks ‘VoicePass’, And I Just Nicknamed My iPhone For Them  —  In the spirit of my trademark watch this morning:  —  Earlier this week, Apple filed a U.S. trademark for ‘VOICEPASS’, in the ‘Construction and Repair Services’ category.  Bloomberg casually mentioned …
Alexei Oreskovic / Reuters:
Ex-Google exec's venture firm to raise $100 million: source  —  (Reuters) - Merus Capital, the venture capital firm co-founded by Google Inc's former head of mergers and acquisitions, is preparing to raise a new $100 million fund, according to a limited partner of the fund.
Cecilia Kang / Post Tech:
FCC chair to approve Comcast-NBC merger with conditions for program sharing  —  The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission issued a draft order approving Comcast's proposed merger with NBC Universal on Thursday, putting the deal up for vote before the agency's other members.
RELATED:
Adam Lashinsky / Fortune:
New evidence raises questions about how long Mark Hurd knew of Jodie Fisher  —  Former HP CEO Mark Hurd's assistant has said she alone discovered and hired the former actress as an HP contractor in 2007.  But it turns out Hurd asked about Fisher years earlier.
Discussion: SAI
Arik Hesseldahl / NewEnterprise:
What Tech Companies Are Spending in Washington  —  It's no big surprise that big companies spend a lot of money in Washington to try to influence the outcome of pending legislation and to try to talk lawmakers and agency officials out of regulating one thing or another.
Kit Dotson / SiliconANGLE:
Kinect Hacked to Aid Learning American Sign Language  —  Didn't I just predict this?  Although, I see the merit for a computer being capable of reading American Sign Language simply for interface purposes, as a somatic and tactile language, it can be quite difficult for some people to pick …
Joe Mullin / paidContent:
Firefox Designer: New Feature Will Expose Sites With Weak Privacy Policies  —  Another sign that browser companies are toying with new ideas for beefing up privacy protection: Mozilla has released a set of icons that are intended to communicate to users, in a simple and straightforward way, how their data can be used.
Rebecca Harper / Hulu Blog:
Introducing Playlists and a New Way to Browse  —  Just in time for the holidays, we've unwrapped some new goodies to share with our users on Hulu.com: playlists and a new way to browse the site.  —  We're always looking for new ways to make watching TV on Hulu more fun …
Discussion: VentureBeat
Jackie Cohen / All Facebook:
Facebook Drives More Video Traffic Than All But Google  —  Facebook has surpassed Yahoo in the amount of traffic sent to video destinations, although Google still has the lead in this regard.  —  This comes from a report by Brightcove and TubeMogul based on data what the two call aggregate media sites …
Discussion: MediaPost, TechCrunch and Fast Company
RELATED:
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:
Facebook Appears To Be Blocking All (Bit.ly Operated) j.mp Links  —  William Albano checks in to tell us that Facebook is blocking all j.mp links in status and page updates (but not profiles).  Sure enough, I tried to post a j.mp link in a status update just now, and I got an error notice saying:
Amir Efrati / Wall Street Journal:
Google Woos Local Advertisers  —  Google Inc., which helped popularize the idea of automated ad sales on the Web, has been quietly turning to an old-fashioned tool—phone calls—to compete in the hot market for local business advertising.  —  The Internet-search giant this year …
Josh Ong / AppleInsider:
Apple's next-gen iPad to get iPod touch-like back, wide-range speaker - rumor  —  The second-generation iPad may have a smaller bezel, a flat back panel and a wide-range speaker, a new unverified report claims.  —  Japanese Mac blog MacOtakara published the rumor Thursday, citing an “anonymous Chinese source.”
Christian Kaiser / The Netflix Tech Blog:
HTML5 and Video Streaming  —  This is Christian Kaiser, VP of Engineering here at Netflix.  —  My colleague John Ciancutti recently posted about our use of HTML5 for user interfaces; I thought I'd add a perspective on HTML5 and video streaming.  —  Since HTML5 includes a facility to embed video playback …
Discussion: ReadWriteWeb and GigaOM
Eric Zeman / InformationWeek:
Samsung Nears 10 Million Galaxy S Sales  —  Samsung recently announced that sales of its Android-based Galaxy S line of smartphones has reached 9.3 million, putting it just short of Samsung's goal of 10 million.  —  Earlier this year, Samsung predicted that it would sell 10 million units of its Galaxy S line of Android smartphones.
 
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 More Items: 
Bradford Cross / Measuring Measures:
Why is Groupon so Important?  —  The Economics of AdWords, AdSense, and Groupon
Kara Swisher / BoomTown:
Demand Media's IPO-Which Won't Happen Until After the New Year …
Audrey Watters / ReadWriteWeb:
New CEO for Second Life as Linden Lab Names EA Gaming Vet to Head Company
Michael Kan / PC World:
Baidu's Twitter-like Service Gains 1 Million China Users
Discussion: WebProNews
Ryan Paul / Ars Technica:
OpenBSD code audit uncovers bugs, but no evidence of backdoor
Discussion: ReadWriteWeb and InfoQ
 Earlier Items: 
Brooke Crothers / CNET News:
Obama cites Steve Jobs' wealth, product success
Monica Chen / DigiTimes:
ECS, Asustek, MSI to showcase tablet PCs at CES 2011
Matt Buchanan / Gizmodo:
Oh Look, Here's Samsung's 4G LTE Android Phone for Verizon
Pew Internet:
Politics goes mobile
Discussion: ReadWriteWeb
Arik Hesseldahl / NewEnterprise:
Gawkergate Collateral Damage Now Includes the New York Times
Bruce Sterling / Webstock:
The Blast Shack  —  We asked Bruce Sterling (who spoke …
Hiroko Tabuchi / Bits:
Clues About the Next PlayStation Portable