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Archives: December 2010

Personalized News Service News.me from The New York Times, Betaworks Now Accepting Invite Requests

Remember News.me, the personalized news service announced in September by The New York Times and Betaworks? According to ReadWriteWeb, News.me will soon debut as an iPad app, and invite requests are now being accepted.

The iPad app was originally supposed to launch by year-end (tick, tick, tick), with a Web version to follow.

Betaworks is behind social Web outfits including URL-shortening service bit.ly, Twitter dashboard TweetDeck, real-time analytics service chartbeat, and audience-engagement platform SocialFlow, according to ReadWriteWeb.

Give a Tweet: Download Who Gives a Tweet

Who Gives a Tweet? Researchers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Southampton, and Georgia Institute of Technology apparently do, as they teamed up to create a Twitter app that lets users rate Tweets from friends and strangers, TechCrunch reports.

MIT PhD student Michael Bernstein told TechCrunch:

Analyzing the negatively rated tweets, and the consensus that forms around them, will help us understand the emerging approved or accepted norms in these new forms of online communication.

Amazon Kindle Books Can Now Be Shared

The lending feature is now available for Amazon Kindle eBooks, allowing digital readers to share books for a short period of time–readers don’t even need a Kindle to borrow a book. UPDATE: Visit our unofficial Kindle Lending Discussion Board to share books with readers that share your interests.

Here’s more about the program, from Amazon: “Eligible Kindle books can be loaned once for a period of 14 days. The borrower does not need to own a Kindle — Kindle books can also be read using our free Kindle reading applications for PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, BlackBerry, and Android devices. Not all books are lendable — it is up to the publisher or rights holder to determine which titles are eligible for lending. The lender will not be able to read the book during the loan period.”

Follow this link to find out if the publisher will let you loan your Kindle books. (Via Jane L)

Newark’s Cory Booker Becoming Mayor of the Twitterverse

Cory Booker, the mayor of Newark, N.J., has received national attention for his extensive Twitter usage in the wake of the blizzard that struck the East Coast this week, responding to several Tweets directly and sometimes actually shoveling snow or delivering needed supplies himself.

Adam Sharp, who became Twitter’s first Washington, D.C.-based employee in November, saluted Booker’s efforts in a post on the Twitter Blog:

It began with a simple “let me know” Tweet a few hours after Sunday’s blizzard dumped more than two feet of snow on New Jersey’s largest city. Soon, Tweets by Newark residents were providing Mayor @CoryBooker with critical real-time information as he directed the massive cleanup.

Booker is no stranger to Twitter. He has logged nearly 5,000 Tweets and gained more than 1 million followers since joining in 2008. In the past four days, he’s demonstrated to his community tangible examples of individual engagement that may have even inspired others to act in kind.

Read more

eReader Apps Rank In Top Free iPad Apps

While Jeff Bezos thinks that iPads are just for playing video games, iPad user behavior is telling a different story. As of this afternoon at 2pm ET, there are three eReader apps in the Top 20 for the App Store’s Top Free iPad Apps list.

Apple’s iBooks is No. 1, Amazon’s Kindle app is No. 8 and Barnes & Noble’s Nook app is No. 18. To be clear, this is for all free iPad apps, not just apps in the Books category. With iBooks beating out Simply Solitaire HD and Fruit Ninja HD Lite, and Kindle and iBooks beating out UNO HD, iPad users are showing that they do more than just play video games on their iPads. Or at least they download the apps with the intention to read.

News apps are also popular, with The Weather Channel app holding the No. 2 position, the CNN app holding the No. 3 position and the NYTimes for iPad app holding the No. 15 position.

iPad users also like streaming content. Netflix is the No. 6 free app and Pandora Radio is No. 10.

The Good, Average & Ugly Startup Logos of 2010

Design marketplace DesignCrowd has posted a list of the 50 good, average, and just plain ugly logos from startups in 2010.

At the top of the “good” list are the logos for group shopping startup Groupon and social web browser Rockmelt, which launched in November.

Meanwhile the “ugly” logos include location sharing service Foursquare and information search engine Wolfram Alpha.

While the “ugly” logos certainly are harsher on the eyes than the streamlined “good” ones, the inclusion of Foursquare, which hit 2 million check-ins this month, and boasts a growth rate of 25,000 users daily, proves that a “good” logo isn’t everything.

Sharp To Bring Galapagos Tablets To U.S. In 2011

Engadget is reporting that Sharp’s new Galapagos tablets will make their way to the United States next year.

After launching earlier this year in Japan, the U.S. versions will reportedly be updated to include a new 3G capability and the proprietary XMDF platform format will be switched to the ePUB format.

Engadget has more: “ Content partnerships are said to be brewing as we type, because, quite naturally, Sharp intends to have its own e-bookstore for Americans as well. After the Yanks, the company’s said to be looking into bringing its 5.5- and 10.8-inch tablets to China, India, and Brazil.”

With RIM’s new PlayBook tablets and the rumored iPad 2, 2011 is already shaping up to be an interesting year for tablets.