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7:30 PM ET, April 4, 2011

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Kent Walker / The Official Google Blog:
Patents and innovation  —  The tech world has recently seen an explosion in patent litigation, often involving low-quality software patents, which threatens to stifle innovation.  Some of these lawsuits have been filed by people or companies that have never actually created anything …
RELATED:
Todd Bishop / GeekWire:
Google bids $900M for Nortel patents, but Microsoft already has them in the bag  —  [Post updated at 1:45 p.m. with clarification of Microsoft's rights to these patents under a previous licensing deal with Nortel.]  —  An executive with bankrupt Nortel Networks calls its intellectual property holdings …
Larry Dignan / Between the Lines Blog:
Google bids $900 million for 6,000 Nortel telecom patents
Mike Swift / Mercury News:
Google: Product chief, Silicon Valley veteran Jonathan Rosenberg to step down  —  Larry Page's retaking the reins as Google's (GOOG) CEO Monday came with the most significant change in years in the makeup of the company's tight-knit senior management core: Jonathan Rosenberg …
Sarah Lacy / TechCrunch:
Milk: Kevin Rose's New Company Aims to Solve Big Problems on the Mobile Web  —  Well by Silicon Valley standards, that certainly wasn't a long “stealth” period.  Just weeks after he quit Digg, Kevin Rose is announcing details of his new startup.  Knowing Rose, I can tell why he's so excited to get started.
Carolyn Penner / Twitter Blog:
Discover new accounts and search like a pro  —  We've made it easier to find and follow Twitter accounts based on your interests.  When you search for a topic, you can now discover accounts that are relevant to that particular subject.  (Previously, you would have seen accounts that have the specific term in their name or username. )
RELATED:
Danny Sullivan / Search Engine Land:   Twitter Improves “Who To Follow” Results & Gains Advanced Search Page
Philip Elmer-DeWitt / Fortune:
Android is a mess, say developers  —  A new survey analyzes the pros and cons of writing for various mobile platforms  —  On the heels of the debate played out over the weekend between Union Square Ventures' Fred Wilson and Instapaper's Marco Arment about whether it's wiser to be writing apps for Apple's …
Wall Street Journal:
Grand Jury Investigates Apps  —  Online music service Pandora Media Inc. said it had received a subpoena related to a federal grand-jury investigation of information-sharing practices by smartphone applications.  —  In a Securities and Exchange Commission related to its planned initial public offering …
RELATED:
SuperSite for Windows:
Windows 8 Secrets: Modern Reader  —  Part four in a series of co-posts by Windows 8 Secrets co-authors Rafael Rivera and Paul Thurrott.  —  There are two big pieces of news in today's revelation.  First, Microsoft will apparently be including its own PDF reader in Windows 8.
RELATED:
Alex Wilhelm / The Next Web:   Windows 8 to include new AppX PDF reader
Zach Epstein / BGR:
AT&T confirms early upgrade price changes for iPhone 4, other smartphones  —  AT&T has confirmed to BGR that it has made changes to early upgrade pricing for its smartphones.  The changes impact customers who wish to upgrade to a new smartphone but are not yet eligible for an upgrade at fully discounted two-year contract prices.
RELATED:
Georgina Prodhan / Reuters:
FT won't give up subscriber relationship to Apple  —  (Reuters) - The Financial Times wants to keep selling subscriptions for its digital news directly to readers rather than surrender control of new customers who sign up via Apple's iPad, the managing director of FT.com said.
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Facebook For iPhone Gets Event Check-Ins, Maps, And Unfriending  —  A couple weeks ago, after All Facebook spotted the ability to check-in to Facebook events, the social network confirmed to us that the feature would be launching shortly on the iPhone and their mobile-based touch site.  Today, here it is.
John Paczkowski / Digital Daily:
The MacBook Air: A $2.2 Billion-a-Year “Quasi-Tablet”  —  With all the chatter over the iPad 2, the iPhone 4 and its successor, it's easy to forget that Apple has another ultra-portable device that's doing quite well at market: the MacBook Air.  —  Nearly six months after it launched …
Jott Blog:
Jott service ending on May 3rd, 2011  —  By now you probably know that we will no longer be offering the Jott service.  We have included below the text of an email we sent to our active customers today.  —  We founded Jott in April of 2006.  In the five years that have followed …
Discussion: Mobilized and GeekWire
Arik Hesseldahl / NewEnterprise:
Texas Instruments to Acquire National Semiconductor for $6.5 Billion  —  Two of the oldest names in the chip business are about to combine.  About as long as I've known about electronics, I've known of the names Texas Instruments and National Semiconductor.
Christian Zibreg / 9 to 5 Mac:
After 201 days in review, Apple greenlights iPhone app that unmasks blocked calls (updated with video)  —  Apple's review process has gone a long way since the early days when every day would bring a new story about a controversial rejection.  It's rare nowadays that an app would take longer …
Allen Stern / CenterNetworks:
AOL's Going(.com) Going Gone!  —  AOL's Going.com has announced it will be closing on May 1, 2011.  Below is the email that AOL (NYSE:AOL) sent to Going.com community members earlier today.  Kara Swisher reported on AOL's acquisition of Going back in 2009 at a value of $10 million.
Discussion: TechCrunch
Matthew Lasar / Ars Technica:
It could be worse: data caps around the world  —  Here at Ars we spend a lot of time writing about data caps—those ceilings on how much broadband data you can use before your ISP taps you on the shoulder and tells you it's time to pay more.  Depending on where you live, these can range from “inconvenient” to “ruinous.”
Discussion: PC World, TechCrunch and msnbc.com
Tom Warren / WinRumors:
Microsoft may announce Silverlight for Xbox next week … Microsoft may be preparing to announce plans to introduce Silverlight for the Xbox 360, WinRumors has learned.  —  The software giant looks set to detail its plans at the MIX11 conference next week in Las Vegas.
Discussion: The Next Web and Electronista, Thanks:tomwarren
Greg Bensinger / Bloomberg:
Sprint Plans Tap-and-Go Payment Service This Year to Get a Jump on Rivals  —  Sprint Nextel Corp. (S) plans to start a service this year that will allow customers to make purchases with their mobile phones, ahead of a similar initiative from rivals Verizon Wireless, AT&T Inc. (T) and T-Mobile USA.
Henry Blodget / The Wire:
IT'S OFFICIAL: AOL Fires Freelancers*  —  A couple of weeks ago, AOL threw its freelance journalists into purgatory:  —  They were supposed to sit tight and wait to hear from their editors on their roles in the post-merger Huffington Post Media Group.  —  The freelancers, naturally …
Evelyn M. Rusli / DealBook:
Insight Venture Partners Raises $2 Billion  —  Venture capital firm Insight Venture Partners announced on Monday the close of two new funds, which together represent $2 billion in new commitments.  —  The Manhattan-based firm, which is an investor in Twitter, said the bulk of the new capital …
 
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 More Items: 
Wall Street Journal:
Making Facebook Ads More Buyer-Friendly
Greg Sandoval / CNET News:
MPAA files copyright suit against Zediva
Discussion: Engadget
Grant Gross / PC World:
California Lawmaker Touts Do-not-track Bill
Discussion: SFGate
Tricia Duryee / eMoney:
Overstock Ends Affiliate Marketing in Four States to Avoid Sales Tax
Discussion: techrockies.com
Nathan Olivarez-Giles / L.A. Times Tech Blog:
Google Street View must obscure faces and license plates in Switzerland, court says [Updated]
Digital Chosunilbo:
N.Korean Delegation Inspect Google Headquarters
 Earlier Items: 
Kara Swisher / BoomTown:
Myspace Bake-Off Starts Wednesday and-Despite Reports-No Bidder in Lead (and No Zynga Interest Either)
Discussion: PC Magazine and MediaPost
Christian Zibreg / 9 to 5 Mac:
Untethered iOS 4.3.1 jailbreak is out, supports all devices except iPad 2 and Verizon iPhone
Thomas Ricker / Engadget:
Sony's Howard Stringer confirms Honeycomb tablet in US by summer
Greg Kumparak / MobileCrunch:
10 Things That Simply Need To Be In iOS 5