Google Unveils $4.4 Trillion Clean Energy Plan
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Google has introduced an ambitious $4.4 trillion energy plan in an effort to reduce U.S. use of fossil fuels by 2030 by using alternative sources, including wind and solar power.

Through its nonprofit organization Google.org, the company is exploring a number of alternative energy initiatives to also find more efficient ways to power its data centers around the world.

Savvy Competitor Analysis and Keyword Research Your Competitors Arent Doing
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First, let’s tackle competitive analysis. As an entrepreneur, you’re no doubt familiar with some of the conventional wisdom about how to handle competitors. Do your research. Check public records and disclosures about big name firms in your industry. Assess your goals, branding plans, and future efforts in the context of the presumptive goals of your industry rivals. Understand why customers choose competitors over your firm — both why they like your rivals and why they refuse to work with you.

Facebook Redesign, Not Bad

 Last night, my husband was logging in to Facebook when he noticed something was different.

Marc Andreessen Joins eBay’s Board Of Directors
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Marc Andreessen has long been a busy man; he’s worked at or invested in Netscape, AOL, Ning, Digg, and Twitter, for starters.  Now, Andreessen’s interests seem to have turned towards boards of directors, as he joined Facebook’s earlier this year and hopped aboard eBay’s yesterday evening.

U.S. Consumers Opposed To Bandwidth Caps

A new survey of U.S. consumers conducted by International Data Corporation (IDC) finds that consumers have a much different view of broadband access and telecom policy that is at odds with many telecom policy makers.

The majority (94%) of respondents see value in broadband service providers (BSP) that dynamically allocate premium bandwidth for some types of traffic, such as video, VoIP, and gaming.

More Men Find Happiness Online
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Men find they are happiest when they are surfing the Web and women are happiest spending time with their families, according to a new Australian study on what makes people happy.

The "Happiness Index" study, polled more than 8,500 Australians between the ages of 18-64 and found that rest and relaxation were the most pleasing activities, while physical exercise was the least likely to make people happy.

Netflix Opens API to Developers
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Netflix has opened its API to third party developers to use within their own applications, and has even authorized commercial use of it. The company is supplying Javascript, REST programming, and Atom feed API components. The API can be used in the following capacities:

Netflix Partners With Starz On Instant Streaming
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Online movie rental service Netflix has reached a deal with Starz Entertainment to make movies from Starz through its broadband subscription movie service, available to be streamed on Netflix.

Internet Radio Is Saved By Congress

There is new hope for Pandora and other webcasters, but any deal is far from done.

Microsoft Launches SearchPerks Program
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At any search engine conference, Google’s setup tends to draw the biggest crowds.  Next come the companies that happen to have booth babes.  But swag is also popular, and since Microsoft can’t easily change its name or distribute women, a new SearchPerks program aims to capitalize on this last idea.

StumbleUpon May Become Bigger Player
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StumbleUpon announced today that it will be rolling out a new design to make the service more accessible to new users. The biggest drawback has always been the fact that users had to install a toolbar to use the service, but with this new design, the need to do so has been eliminated.

Bloomberg To Provide Video To AOL Money & Finance

Bloomberg Television has reached a deal with AOL to provide video on AOL’s Money & Finance portal.

Germans Seek To Block Google Street View
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Aspects of Google are pretty popular in Germany; the latest comScore data indicates, for example, that it’s cornered 79.8 percent of the country’s search market.  Google Street View is being looked at in a different light, however, and may hit a show-stopping barrier in the town of Molfsee.

British Telecom’s Doing ISP-Based Behavioral Targeting
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British Telecom began some ISP-based behavioral ad targeting testing today. Before privacy enthusiasts freak out, it’s on an opt-in basis…so far.

"Around 10,000 customers will be invited to opt in to the trial when they commence their browsing session. We will issue invitations at random," said British Telecom.

Ballmer Gives Economic Warning

Microsoft’s stock managed to go up by 6.72 percent today, which undid a great deal of damage and put the company ahead of its opening price from Friday.  Just the same, Steve Ballmer has taken the unusual step of warning onlookers that the economic problems are likely to affect everyone.

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I deal with a lot of PR flaks, marketing guys, computer geeks, company founders and CEOs, but not one of them has ever uttered a phrase like this: “Instead of just iCams or emoticons, you can reach out and tickle or fondle someone if they agree to it."

That gem is courtesy of Amir Vatan, co-founder of HighJoy Products. His company specializes in cyberdildonics, a.k.a. teledildonics, a.k.a. icky Internet-controlled sex junk. HighJoy.com* is a kind of Facebook for. . .is a MySpace for. . .well, you know.

Online Threats Concerning More Americans
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Internet users are becoming increasingly concerned about online threats such as viruses, spam and identity theft, according to survey by the American Consumer Institute.

Consumers also report significant worry that their privacy might be invaded by programs that track and record which Internet sites they visit.

The majority (74%) of those surveyed said they were "very concerned," about identity theft, compared to 68 percent who indicated great worry about identity theft in a similar ACI survey from 2006.

YouTube HotSpots Show You Which Spots Are Hot

Earlier this year, YouTube rolled out YouTube Insight, an analytics program for videos that let users get a look into where and by whom videos were posted. They have launched a new feature of that service today, which allows you to actually pinpoint the specific parts of videos that get viewed the most. A post on the Official Google Blog explains:

YouTube Given Important Role In New Zealand Politics

One nice result of the U.S. economy’s implosion has been the news coverage of something other than American politics.  But then the blame game begins, so to remove ourselves even further from McCain-Obama bickering, we can look to YouTube’s latest project: the ONE News YouTube Election Debate.

Norway Presses Apple To Open Up iTunes
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A Norway consumer body says it wants to take Apple to court over its iTunes music store for not changing its DRM technology to make its music available on all music players.

Two years ago, Consumer Ombudsman Bjørn Erik Thon criticized iTunes for the use of unfair contract terms in breach of the Norwegian Marketing Control Act.

MySpace Facing Loss Of Top Spot

It shouldn’t surprise anyone if MySpace’s execs all have the "Jaws" theme stuck in their heads.  Facebook has been creeping up on its rival for some time, and within the next month or so, may finally overtake it in terms of unique U.S. visitors.

SocialText Brings Facebook & Twitter Into Wikis

 Socialtext is making big news all over the Web this morning. Here’s a rundown, later in the post I’ll talk about why.

Customers Cry Foul On Wal-Mart’s DRM Decision

 In yet another shutdown of DRM servers, following on the heels of Yahoo and MSN Music,Wal-Mart is also shutting down their DRM servers casting millions of dollars in media locked into one computer, unless you can copy it over to disk. 

Companies Come Together To Promote Mobile Broadband

A group of 16 major IT and mobile companies have united behind a GSMA-led initiative to promote mobile broadband.

The companies include Dell, Ericsson, Lenovo, Microsoft, T-Mobile, Toshiba and Vodafone. The group’s goal is to help people easily identify laptops that have built in access to the Internet via high-speed networks. The marketing initiative is worth more than $1 billion over the next year.

The group will label laptop computers that meet their standards for mobile broadband access with a badge that identifies the laptops as ready for mobile broadband connections.