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11:50 AM ET, December 19, 2011

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Bradley Horowitz / The Official Google Blog:
Google+: A few big improvements before the New Year  —  Today we're pleased to announce a goodie basket full of Google+ features and functionality for you to unpack and enjoy over the holidays.  Some of these were on nearly everyone's wishlist... and some we hope will be welcome surprises.
RELATED:
T.C. Sottek / The Verge:
Google+ adds Circles volume slider, updates notifications, Pages, and photos  —  Google's announced that Google+ will receive some new improvements over the next couple of days, including refined activity stream controls, more detailed notifications, a new photo lightbox, and a few changes to Google+ Pages.
Wall Street Journal:
Apple Plots Its TV Assault  —  Apple Inc. is moving forward with its assault on television, following up on the ambitions of its late co-founder, Steve Jobs.  —  In recent weeks, Apple executives have discussed their vision for the future of TV with media executives at several large companies …
RELATED:
Mark Gurman / 9to5Mac:
WSJ: Apple discussing voice-powered TV, enhanced AirPlay, iCloud DVR service
Discussion: T3 News
Nick Bilton / Bits:
Wearing Your Computer on Your Sleeve  —  Technology often has a way of fixing the problems it creates.  Here's one that needs solving.  —  The invention of the smartphone has created a world where millions of people stroll through life constantly staring into a mobile device, like Narcissus at the edge of a pond.
Shaji Mathew / Bloomberg:
Prince Alwaleed Invests $300M in Twitter  —  Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, the largest individual investor in Citigroup Inc. (C), and his Kingdom Holding Co. (KINGDOM) invested $300 million to buy a “strategic stake” in microblogging service Twitter Inc.  —  “The investment was the result …
RELATED:
Dan Primack / Fortune:   Twitter doesn't really raise money from Saudi prince
Florian Mueller / FOSS Patents:
British Telecom sues Google over six U.S. patents allegedly infringed by Android and various Google services  —  After Apple, Oracle, Microsoft, and eBay, British Telecommunications plc (commonly referred to as “British Telecom” or simply “BT") has just become the fifth large publicly-traded company …
Matt Brian / The Next Web:
Google gives out customised Galaxy Nexus handsets to employees for Christmas  —  It appears that Google employees are going to enjoy the latest and greatest Android smartphone that the search giant and Samsung have to offer after it emerged the company is giving its staff customised handsets as a Christmas thank you.
Reuters:
Apple supplier Pegatron says small explosion at Shanghai plant  —  (Reuters) - Apple Inc supplier Pegatron said a small explosion at its subsidiary in Shanghai, China had injured some workers but would not have a big impact on production.  —  Pegatron said in a statement released early …
Svea Herbst-Bayliss / Reuters:
MIT to offer labs, certificates to virtual students  —  (Reuters) - The Massachusetts Institute of Technology is developing technology that will allow students taking courses online to use simulated labs, interact with professors and other students, and earn certificates.
Jon Russell / The Next Web:
Facebook introduces private messages between business pages and fans  —  Facebook has begun introducing a new feature which allows business pages to receive private messages from their fans on the social network.  —  The new communications option, which has appeared for Asia-based admins only so far …
Discussion: ClickZ
Joe Schneider / Bloomberg:
Facebook Lawsuit Against Ads ‘Liked’ by Friends Can Proceed, Judge Rules  —  Facebook Inc., the world's most used social-networking service, can be sued by people who claim showing advertisements that their friends apparently like violates a California law regarding commercial endorsements.
 
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 More Items: 
Leena Rao / TechCrunch:
Vistaprint Buys DIY Site Builder Webs.com For $117.5 Million
Clay Johnson / Information Diet:
Dear Internet: It's No Longer OK to Not Know How Congress Works
Nicole Perlroth / New York Times:
As Patient Records Are Digitized, Data Breaches Are on the Rise
Dean Takahashi / VentureBeat:
Chip executive outlook reveals bleak times ahead
Discussion: eWeek and Gartner
Enigmax / TorrentFreak:
File-Sharing 3 Strikes Killed in Ireland, Government Promises Site Blocking
Discussion: The Irish Times and Business ETC
Jenna Wortham / New York Times:
App Makers Face Holiday Cutoff for Apple Store
 Earlier Items: 
Inside Social Games:
What Does Life After IPO Look Like For Zynga?
Ernesto Londoño / Washington Post:
U.S. military, Taliban use Twitter to wage war
Steve Lohr / New York Times:
The Internet Gets Physical
Discussion: @timoreilly, Thanks:beet_tv
 

 
From Mediagazer:

Rebecca Sun / Hollywood Reporter:
Top Hollywood Execs Unveil Anti-Sexual Harassment Commission Chaired by Anita Hill

Ryan J. Foley / Associated Press:
Iowa Supreme Court justice blocks Des Moines Register from reporting on legally-obtained court records that were inadvertently filed publicly

Maureen Dowd / New York Times:
Sheila Nevins is stepping down as president of HBO Documentary Films after more than 38 years

 
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