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Dell Settles with SEC for $100 Million
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Dell announced that it’s reached a settlement with the SEC, resolving an investigation into Dell’s disclosures and alleged omissions from before Fiscal Year 2008, regarding its relationship to Intel, as well as other accounting and financial reporting issues.

YouTube Selects YouTube Play Jurors (Including Darren Aronofsky)
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YouTube has just unveiled the jury for YouTube Play, which was announced last month. The project features over 6,000 videos from 69 countries. The YouTube Play Channel had had over 2 million views.

The jury includes musician Laurie Anderson, the group Animal Collective, visual artists Douglas Gordon, Ryan McGinley, Marilyn Minter and Takashi Murakami, artists and filmmakers Shirin Neshat, Apichatpong Weerasethakul and Darren Aronofsky, and graphic designer Stefan Sagmeister. Guggenheim Chief Curator and Deputy Director Nancy Spector is serving as jury chairperson.

Google to Churn Out New Chrome Releases
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Google has unveiled a new strategy for Chrome: accelerate the rate at which stable releases are made available. The company even thinks it can get a new stable version out once every six weeks. That’s double what it currently does.

Google says it has the following three goals:

Microsoft Trounces Earnings Estimates

Yesterday morning, thousands of Microsoft employees celebrated Steve Ballmer’s 30th year with the company.  This afternoon, they – along with many independent shareholders – are probably cheering again, as Microsoft reported record results for the past fiscal quarter.

Is the Internet Looking at Y2K Part 2?
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Richard MacManus at ReadWriteWeb ran a very interesting story about how the Internet will run out of addresses in less than a year. This is what John Curran, President and CEO of the American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) says. Google’s Chief Internet Evangelist Vint Cerf has also reportedly made a similar claim.

Bing Launches Gallery of All Past Homepage Photos
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In case you’ve ever wanted to browse an archive of Bing’s homepage images, you can now do so. Microsoft has launched the Bing Homepage Visual Search Gallery.

Whereas with the arrows on the homepage itself, you can view a week’s worth of Bing photos, you can access any of them from this gallery.

Amazon’s Earnings Show Kindle Doing Very Well for the Company
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Amazon sold three times as many Kindle books in the first half of 2010 as it did in the first half of 2009.  It was revealed earlier this week that Amazon is now selling more Kindle books than hardcover books. This was reiterated in the company’s earnings announcement today.

Amazon Announces Q2 Sales of $6.57 billion

Amazon announced its second quarter earnings today. Net sales were up 41% at $6.57 billion, compared with $4.65 billion in the second quarter of ’09.

"Excluding the $48 million unfavorable impact from year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates throughout the quarter, net sales would have grown 42% compared with second quarter 2009," the company said.

Symantec: Short URL Spam Reaches Historical Peak
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A new report from Symantec’s MessageLabs finds that short URLs in spam have reached a "historical peak". This type of spam has increased significantly over the past year.

Spam containing shortened links hit a one day peak of 18%, or 23.4 billion spam emails, on April 30, 2010, doubling last year’s peak levels when spam with shortened links accounted for 9.3% of spam (more than 10 billion spam emails) on July 28, 2009.

Virgin America Flights Get Enhanced Google Maps Data

Google announced today that it has completely updated the Google Maps data on the touchscreens of airplane seats on Virgin America.

RockYou Swears Allegiance To Facebook Credits

Facebook’s virtual currency has scored a significant win.  Today, RockYou, which is the developer behind apps including "SuperWall" and "Pieces of Flair," announced that it will effectively recognize no form of virtual money other than Facebook Credits for the next five years.

YouTube Shows Future Standard Embed Code
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YouTube has introduced a new way to embed videos. The new style uses an <iframe>.

Viewers of videos which use the following embed code style will be able to view the embedded video in one of YouTube’s Flash or HTML5 players, depending on viewing environment and preferences:

Consumers Becoming More Comfortable With Online Tracking

The growth in the use of mobile technology has made U.S. consumers more comfortable with safeguards as fewer are voicing concern about privacy and security on their wireless devices, according to a new global survey by KPMG.

KPMG found that 48 percent of the U.S. consumers surveyed on the use of technology (e.g. computers, smart phones, mobile applications and the internet) were very concerned about privacy when using a mobile device, which was down from 58 percent when KPMG conducted a similar survey in 2008.

Google Speeds Up Dialing on Google Voice Apps
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Google announced today that it has launched an enhancement for the Google Voice mobile app on Android and BlackBerry devices. The tweak is designed to make placing calls quicker. The feature itself is called "Direct Access Numbers."

Flickr Updates iPhone App to Utilize iOS 4 Capabilities, Adds Twitter Sharing

Flickr has released an updated version of its iPhone app, specifically targeting new features of the iPhone 4 like multi-tasking and support for HD-video uploads.

AOL Launches New Mobile Portal and Android Apps
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AOL has launched a new smartphone portal at m.aol.com and 2 new Android apps. In fact, AOL specifically says that it’s increasing its focus on Android.

The smartphone portal is for HTML5-supporting smartphones, providing a touch-driven interface that allows for easy scrolling through articles and content, as well as location-based services for weather, movies, traffic, etc. There is also an app directory for users to find mobile apps, and it supports video content.

Finding Alternatives To Facebook
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With the news confirmed that Facebook membership now exceeds 500 million people worldwide – that’s nearly 10 percent of the world’s total population – it’s a worthy reminder to note that, never mind its size or seeming monolithic ubiquity, there are other social networking places to complement Facebook.

Baidu Reports 118 Percent Rise In Profits

Baidu’s second quarter was in many (positive) respects a doozy.  The company released its earnings report last night, and posted some very interesting numbers as it beat analysts’ estimates.  One key stat: profits rose 118 percent on a year-over-year basis.

AOL Launches Advertising Hub For Politics
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AOL has launched AOL Advertising Politics hub aimed at campaigns, advocacy groups and companies looking to target audiences online.

Online display advertising has become a key factor for political campaigns. With the Supreme Court ruling earlier this year lifting the restrictions on political ad spending from corporations, companies can now join campaign and issue advocacy groups in influencing voters online. AOL hopes to capitalize on the upcoming November elections.

YouTube Launches New Version of Music Page

YouTube has launched a revamped version of its Music page, following in the footsteps of its shows and movies pages. The new page showcases the most viewed music videos, as well as special promotions, curated playlists, and unsigned talent.

70,000 Blogs Shut Down After FBI Finds Terrorist Materials, Blogs May Come Back
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Update 2: CNET’s Greg Sandoval now reports that users could see their blogs again, but Blogetery likely won’t be hosted by Burst.net in the future.

Burst.net CTO says that the service has not resopnded quickly enough to abuse claims in the past, which appears to be the reason the whole service was shut down in the first place. More on the story here.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Talks Legal Battle, Won’t See “The Social Network”

This week Facebook surpassed 500 million users, but that’s not the only reason the world’s largest social network is making headlines.

This post from O’Reilly Radar breaks down where Facebook’s half a billion users reside by region. Asia appears to be the fastest-rising region for Facebook users, currently sitting at 17% of the social network’s user base.

Salesforce.com Provides Its Own Example of an Employee Social Media Policy
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This week has been a big week for social media as the world’s most popular social network announced that it reached 500 million users. Salesforce.com is just as excited about it as anybody.

Barnes & Noble Launches Nook Android App
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Barnes & Noble has introduced Nook for Android. This comes in the form of a free app that lets users read eBooks with customizable font styles. The company says this is the first Android eReader app that lets users share eBooks with friends.

The company also points out that this is the first eReader software to feature its new "NOOK-centric" branding. The app will soon be followed up with updated apps for the iPhone, iPad, and other devices.