• Breaking: Germany's Plazes Acquired By Nokia

    Berlin, Germany based Plazes, a location based social network (and one of the first startups we ever wrote about here on TechCrunch, back in 2005), has been acquired by Finland-based Nokia, the companies are announcing today. The price is not being disclosed. We most recently wrote about Plazes new iPhone application in May 2008, which will take advantage of the cutting edge location… Read More

  • Parents blame kids' failing test scores on Wikipedia

    Dumb kids in Scotland are failing tests not because they’re dumb, or because they haven’t properly prepared, but because Wikipedia is evil and mean and “littered with inaccuracies.” Shucks, and I thought Wikipedia was to be trusted 100 percent of the time. Right, so the Scottish Parent Teacher Council, which just sounds like a fun group, hated on Wikipedia the other… Read More

  • Cable companies still bickering over FiOS advertising

    Comcast, Verizon, and Time Warner Cable are all sniping at each other, emphasizing the minor advantages their overpriced service has over the competitor’s overpriced service. They’re trading whiny potshots over whether the fiber goes to the house, what “compression” means, and so on, when they should be doing that other stuff cable companies do, like throttling my… Read More

  • The Pirate Bay adding SSL encryption in response to Swedish wiretapping law

    You may remember that a couple days ago the Swedish Parliament passed a controversial law allowing warrantless wiretaps and monitoring of internet traffic. While I’m sure this is ostensibly for fighting terrorism or something, it’s too tempting for media companies and telecoms to eavesdrop and listen for the newest Kid Rock album being transferred. In response to this law, the… Read More

  • 2K removes BioShock install limit (but SecureROM still present)

    2K Games has removed an annoying piece of its DRM restrictions in the PC version of BioShock, a game I refuse to play because of its violent content. While SecureROM and all that other DRM goodness remain, you’re no longer limited to the number of PCs you can install the game in. A victory for freedom, to be sure. Seriously, how do you PC gamers put up with all that DRM nonsense? It… Read More

  • CrunchBase: Now With Maps, Advanced Search, Jobs, And Milestones

    We’re proud to announce today a slew of new improvements to CrunchBase, our directory for information about the tech startup ecosystem. Maps Company and financial organization headquarters are now geocoded and locatable on an interactive map using the Google Maps API. Say you’re checking out Yelp and want to see just where the company is located and what other startups are nearby. Read More

  • Bill Gates and Co. in 1978 looked groovy

    Bill Gates leaves Microsoft on June 27, and every news outlet is now running their own version of “What happens now?” Newsweek’s is among the least annoying, comparing a photo taken in 1978 at a mall in Albuquerque to one taken a few weeks ago. All the big players are there, from Gates himself to friend and Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen to a then-programmer who’s now… Read More

  • What does Metal Gear Solid 4 tell us about ourselves?

    The world is spinning out of control, but the New York Times still finds time to analyze what Metal Gear Solid 4 means to the medium of video games and to humanity as a whole. Super. An article there today goes around asking some of the guys from Kotaku and 1UP what they think of the game’s heavy story. Is the game too preachy? What does it say about America’s position in the world? Read More

  • Australian man auctions off his life on eBay

    An Australian man is auctioning off his life on eBay. Neat! So yeah, some guy in Australia, Ian Usher, just split up with his wife, and rather than be a good solider and find someone else, he’s decided his life isn’t worth living, per se. Not that he’s going to off himself, but that he’s giving away his life—house, job, car, possessions and his friends. The… Read More

  • Tokyo Toy Show 2008: All award winners, first impressions, pictures

    Today I went to Odaiba, a strangely futuristic island just off the coast of Tokyo Bay, to cover this year’s Tokyo Toy Show. The event takes place every June and is one of the biggest and most important toy exhibitions in the world. Last year’s show attracted over 110,000 visitors. The picture above shows a huge crowd watching a Power Rangers dance show. Sorry, I didn’t see… Read More

  • Shock report: One-quarter of iPhone users switched from a Razr

    Flickr’d Several people on the “Internet” are making a big deal out of recently released numbers from J.D. Power and Associates that shows nearly one-quarter of Motorola Razr users switched to the iPhone. I don’t know what’s so surprising about that. If people had gotten the Razr in 2005, when it was popular (I swear, every two-bit jerk had one at my school; I… Read More

  • Snow Leopard screens trickle out: Safari has mysterious 'Save as Web Application' menu item!

    The first shots of Snow Leopard, Apple’s new operating system that should be here in about a year, are now starting to appear online. On a German site, of all crazy things! Anyhow, the biggest news from the released screen shots is the existence of a mysterious “Save as Web Application” menu item in Safari. What this does is save the Web site—let’s say Gmail… Read More

  • TechCrunch Europe events listings are now crowd-sourced

    I have been attempting, usually in vain, to post the many relevant events for readers to keep track of. This is obviously a tricky task, given that there are an increasing number of these. However, I have managed to re-gain control of the old TechCrunch UK group on Upcoming. Now, event organisers who post their events to Upcoming will be able to add the group “TechCrunch UK &… Read More

  • Yapta Graduates From Browser Add-On to Flight-Tracking Website

    Browser add-ons are a great, but not everybody uses them. If you want to build a serious Web business, it is probably still a good idea to have a Website as well. Last year, when Tom Romary launched Yapta he didn’t want to compete with all the other established travel Websites out there. So he created Yapta as a browser add-on that allowed travelers to track flight fares at the exact… Read More

  • Video Comments The Japanese Way (Nico Nico Douga)

    Can a geek-driven video portal beat YouTube in Japan? One of the most spectacular success stories in the Asian web market is currently being written by Nico Nico Douga (“smiling videos”), a video sharing platform from Japan. As one of the country’s most visited sites, it still trails the Japanese version of YouTube. But Nico Nico is catching up very quickly. The site, which… Read More

  • Easy Website Highlighting and Notes with Awesome Highlighter

    I believe we’ve all experienced some of the repercussions that have come from having so much information at our fingertips. We’ve seen plenty of social bookmarking sites pop-up and we’ve also seen interesting developments with social annotating sites like Fleck and Stickis (we compared five social annotation sites here). All are attempting the same task – organizing… Read More

  • A Peek Inside Google's Gmail Usability Lab

    Nika Smith wrote a post on the Google blog today showing the evolution of Google chat before it launched in early 2006. Google does extensive testing of new products using employees as guinea pigs (see our post on the pre-launch evolution of Gmail) as well as outsiders brought in to test software and interfaces in their usability lab. I had a chance to see the lab a few weeks ago. It’s… Read More

  • An Eee 1000H broken down and laid bare

    Tweaktown has (in an inexplicably explicitly-worded article) taken apart one of the new, black Eee PCs and checked out all its bits and bytes. To be honest, there’s not much in the way of surprises. It’s mostly common OEM hardware, the expected Atom processor, and the normal layout for webcam, microphone, and all that. What’s nice though is that because the RAM and HDD are… Read More

  • MPAA says it shouldn't have to provide evidence to convict pirates because it's 'very difficult'

    The MPAA may have some explaining to do following remarks of one of its lawyers in the Jammie Thomas trial. The remark in question, as written by Marie. L. van Uitert: It is often very difficult, and in some cases, impossible, to provide such direct proof when confronting modern forms of copyright infringement, whether over P2P networks or otherwise; understandably, copyright infringers… Read More

  • Updated Yahoo Exec Tracker – 114 Execs Left Since January 2007

    I suspected that as soon as we published the data on the 50 ex-Yahoo execs that have left the company since January 2007 our readers would chime in with more data. We’ve now added the execs we previously missed, and the list has grown to 114 people. We’ve done our best to say when each exec left and where she or he is now. These are senior directors up through CEO level –… Read More

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