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11:20 PM ET, July 5, 2011

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Ben Parr / Mashable!:
EXCLUSIVE: Google to Retire Blogger & Picasa Brands in Google+ Push  —  Say goodbye to the Picasa and Blogger names: Google intends to retire several non-Google name brands and rename them as Google products, Mashable has learned.  —  The move is part of a larger effort to unify its brand …
RELATED:
Tom Cheredar / VentureBeat:
Google retiring Blogger and Picasa brands for public launch of Google+
FierceWireless:
Verizon confirms it will ditch unlimited smartphone data plans starting July 7  —  Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) will switch to a new, usage-based pricing model for smartphone data starting July 7, a company spokeswoman confirmed.  —  Verizon spokeswoman Brenda Raney told FierceWireless …
Lauren Indvik / Mashable!:
Twitter Testing Facebook-Like Message Wall [PIC]  —  Twitter is testing a Facebook-like message wall on profile pages, prompting users to send public tweets (a.k.a @ replies, or mentions) to specific users directly from their profile pages.  —  Twitter is testing the feature with a small percentage of users.
Discussion: @dannysullivan and Redmond Pie
Wall Street Journal:
New Financing Values Twitter as High as $7 Billion  —  Even as Internet companies such as Zynga Inc. and Groupon Inc. file to go public, Twitter Inc. is taking a different route: It is continuing to tap private investors.  —  The fast-growing Internet messaging service is currently …
BackType:
BackType Has Been Acquired by Twitter  —  We're thrilled to announce that BackType has been acquired by Twitter!  We'll be bringing our team and technology to Twitter's platform team, where our focus will be developing tools for Twitter's publisher partners.
Monica Chen / DigiTimes:
Pegatron receives orders for 15 million iPhone 5s from Apple  —  Taiwan-based notebook maker Pegatron Technology is estimated to have landed orders for 15 million iPhone 5s (iPhone 4S) from Apple and is set to start shipping in September of 2011, according to sources from upstream component makers.
RELATED:
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
If Google Buzz Is A Black Hole For Sharing Traffic, Google+ Is The Big Bang  —  Back in March of last year, we noted that Google Buzz, Google's shiny new social network at the time, was getting smoked in terms of referral traffic sent our way, by a dead man, FriendFeed.
Matthew Panzarino / The Next Web:
As of July 31st, all Google profiles will be public  —  Google will no longer allow users to have private Google profiles after July 31st, reports Search Engine Land.  The company had previously allowed users to create and maintain profiles on its service without publicly disclosing their existence.
Todd Haselton / BGR:
Android market share jumps as BlackBerry slides; smartphones now owned by 1 in 3 Americans  —  According to a new report from comScore, 1 in 3 Americans now own a smartphone.  Google's Android OS is ahead of the pack with a 38.1% share of the market during the 3-month period ending in May — up 5.1% from the last report in February.
Leena Rao / TechCrunch:
Google Rumored To Launch ITA-Powered Travel Search Product Soon  —  We're hearing that Google is planning to launch an ITA integrated-flight search product as soon as a few weeks from now, according to a well-placed industry source.  In April, the DOJ finally approved Google's $700 million acquisition …
Jon Brodkin / Network World:
Microsoft patent division taking cash from at least 5 Android vendors  —  Microsoft has revealed four Android patent deals since last week  —  One of Microsoft's hottest new profit centers is a smartphone platform you've definitely heard of: Android.  —  Google's Linux-based mobile operating system …
Tarmo Virki / Reuters:
Ailing Nokia cuts smartphone prices to halt slump  —  (Reuters) - Struggling Nokia has cut the prices of its smartphones in Europe, two industry sources told Reuters on Tuesday, raising the possibility of a more intensive price war in the mobile phone market.
Florian Mueller / FOSS Patents:
Lodsys sues The New York Times Company and five other companies who previously sued Lodsys  —  Lodsys filed a patent infringement lawsuit today in East Texas against the very six companies who previously filed declaratory judgment actions against Lodsys in other jurisdictions.
Ed Oswald / BetaNews:
Microsoft pays University of Nebraska $250,000 to use Office365  —  If you really are in need of some high profile clients, you can always pay them.  That's exactly what Microsoft has done with the University of Nebraska.  Microsoft has paid the university $250,000 to migrate its e-mail …
Matt Brian / The Next Web:
Microsoft begins moving Xbox 360 profiles and saved games to the Cloud  —  Microsoft has begun issuing updates to Xbox 360 consoles that will start moving saved games and profiles away from local storage and moving them into the cloud, Eurogamer reports.  —  The new update will make it possible …
Susan Decker / Bloomberg:
Google Searching for Patents After Nortel Loss  —  Google Inc. (GOOG)'s loss in bidding for the $4.5 billion portfolio of Nortel Networks Corp. patents last week means the Internet-search company will be looking to buy other inventions to build a bulwark against lawsuits targeting its Android system, patent brokers said.
Philip Elmer-DeWitt / Fortune:
Steve Jobs' bio gets a new title  —  “iSteve: The Book of Jobs” was the publisher's idea.  The author had second thoughts.  —  Amazon still doesn't have the title quite right  —  The first biography of Apple's (AAPL) CEO to get Steve Jobs' blessing — and cooperation — hasn't yet been published.
Florian Mueller / FOSS Patents:
August 5 hearing on preliminary injunction against Samsung too early, judge tells Apple  —  Apple's impressively bold motion for a preliminary injunction against four Samsung products in the U.S. market proposed a hearing in one month from today: on August 5, 2011, at 1:30 PM Pacific Time …
Discussion: The Next Web and MobileCrunch, Thanks:curtwfallesq
Kate Murphy / New York Times:
iPads Replacing Pilots' Paper Manuals  —  What is in those bulky, black flight bags that pilots carry into the cockpit?  It is not a change of clothes but reams of reference material needed for the flight — about 40 pounds of it.  There are the aircraft's operating manual, safety checklists …
David Kravets / Threat Level:
‘Massive Infringement’ Case Against CNET Dropped  —  Plaintiffs in a federal lawsuit accusing CNET of facilitating “massive copyright infringement” by distributing peer-to-peer software dropped their case Monday.  —  The May lawsuit was lodged in Los Angeles by a handful of musicians and filmmaker Alkiviades David.
Discussion: paidContent:UK and TorrentFreak
Mike Masnick / Techdirt:
Law Professors Come Out Against PROTECT IP  —  Another day, another constituency speaking out against PROTECT IP and the damage that it will do.  This time, it's a large group of law professors (over 90 have signed on so far), including some big names.  The professors' full letter is embedded below …
Liz Gannes / AllThingsD:
Apparently Undeterred by Apple Crackdown, Tapjoy Investors Pour In $30M More  —  Tapjoy, which has seen its app marketing business significantly affected by Apple's changed stance on in-app promotions, is still charging ahead.  The company last week raised $30 million in a round led …
Rip Empson / TechCrunch:
Educated Buy?  Providence Equity Partners To Acquire Blackboard For $1.64 Billion In Cash  —  Blackboard, the maker of learning and education software for enterprises and schools, announced Friday that it is being acquired by a group of investors led by Providence Equity Partners …
Bobbie Johnson / GigaOM:
Nokia's $200m secret shows the rot goes way, way back  —  There have been plenty of attempts to pinpoint where Nokia, the struggling Finnish mobile company, really started to go wrong.  Some think it was when the iPhone launched and left it in the dust; some would suggest it was when the board …
Discussion: SlashGear, Thanks:bobbiejohnson
 
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Lockheed Martin CEO Marillyn Hewson joins Disrupt SF to talk about US crewed spaceflight  —  The space race is back on, but this time it's closer to home: A number of U.S. companies are vying to become …
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 More Items: 
Zack Whittaker / ZDNet:
EU demands answers over Microsoft's Patriot Act admission
Discussion: Computerworld
Elinor Mills / CNET News:
Report: Morgan Stanley warns 34,000 clients of data breach
Discussion: Credit.com
Rachel King / Between the Lines Blog:
Samsung garners 60 percent of U.S. 3D TV market share
Discussion: Samsung USA Newsroom
Om Malik / GigaOM:
For Foursquare, Brazil is the next big check-in
Gregg Keizer / Computerworld:
Microsoft to retire Office XP, Vista SP1 next week
Discussion: Neowin.net and The Next Web
Kara Swisher / AllThingsD:
Dancing Queen: After Meeting With Microsoft Last Week, Yahoo Is Next on Hulu's Sales Card
 Earlier Items: 
Todd Bishop / GeekWire:
Microsoft Bing innovates on iPad with ‘Lasso’ quick search
Anne Tergesen / Wall Street Journal:
When Guests Check In, Their iPhones Check Out
Discussion: The Business Insider
Simon Mackie / GigaOM:
Why Google+ could find a home in the workplace
Emil Protalinski / Friending Facebook Blog:
Facebook blocks Google Chrome extension for exporting friends