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A judge has dismissed Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen’s lawsuit against Google, Apple, Facebook and others for patent infringement.
Back in August, Allen originally claimed that 11 different companies, including YouTube, Netflix and AOL, had violated four different patents associated with web search and e-commerce. These patents are tied to both software and business methods.
Now, however, a court has sided with Google et al. in a motion to dismiss the case, saying Allen’s claims were too vague and lacked “adequate factual detail to satisfy the dictates of Twombly and Iqbal” — two cases that are precedents for requiring adequate evidentiary support.
The decision further states that Allen “has failed to identify the infringing products or devices with any specificity. The Court and Defendants are left to guess what devices infringe on the four patents… These allegations are insufficient to put Defendants on ‘notice as to what [they] must defend.’”
Allen will have until December 28 to return to the court with a more specific complaint.
The patents Allen is claiming were infringed upon are as follows:
  • United States Patent No. 6,263,507 issued for an invention entitled “Browser for Use in Navigating a Body of Information, With Particular Application to Browsing Information Represented By Audiovisual Data.”
  • United States Patent No. 6,034,652 issued for an invention entitled “Attention Manager for Occupying the Peripheral Attention of a Person in the Vicinity of a Display Device.”
  • United States Patent No. 6,788,314 issued for an invention entitled “Attention Manager for Occupying the Peripheral Attention of a Person in the Vicinity of a Display Device.”
  • United States Patent No. 6,757,682 issued for an invention entitled “Alerting Users to Items of Current Interest.”
Do you think this lawsuit still stands a chance?
The pace of innovation in the technology industry quickened again in 2010, after stumbling momentarily in 2009 because of the global recession. The most potent sign of the rebound was the steady stream of new products, new technologies, and new ideas that pushed the previous boundaries and rethought the status quo.
Of course, innovation means taking risks and some of them — including some the most widely publicized — turn out to duds. And, even some of the most successful new products get overhyped and oversold.
That’s the subject of this week’s Monday morning editorial: the most overhyped products of 2010. Here’s my list.

1: Stay away from retail stores

If you want to get a good deal on a laptop, stay away from major electronics retailers. I don’t want to name names, but there is one major electronics store within half an hour’s drive of my house. I have noticed that its prices are always the same as the MSRP listed on the Internet. Even the store’s sale prices are more expensive than what you would pay if you were to buy the same laptop online.
Of course, the price isn’t the only reason I recommend avoiding the major electronics stores. Things like high pressure sales tactics and upcharges for things I don’t want (such as extended warranties, setup, software suites, and delivery) are enough to drive me insane. Unless I need a computer immediately I avoid the electronics stores at all costs.

2: Decide what’s important to you

t’s quite possible that 2010 will be remembered as the year that the tablet revolution began. After Apple’s unveiling of the iPad in January, I frankly would never have predicted that the company would sell over 7 million during the product’s first six months on the market. It has clearly touched a nerve and a slew of multi-touch tablet copycats are lining up to compete with it.
I also think it’s fair to say that the tech world has been a bit over-infatuated with tablets this year — myself included, at times. While tablets are starting to make a lot of sense for workers who spend their days on-the-go, in conference rooms, and on-site with clients, there are still plenty of employees who remain tied to their desks for most of the day and are under a lot of pressure to produce.
For these workers, the desktop computer remains the best tool for the job. And, so we don’t forget that this is still the silent majority of computer users, here are four ways to optimize the desktop experience and maximize productivity using some of the latest technologies.

Name: BridgeURL

Quick Pitch: BridgeURL does one simple task. Users can input multiple links and generate one URL that will display all listed links in a slideshow format.
Genius Idea: URL-shortening services have become extremely popular and necessary in today’s age of short-form status updates. You’ve probably already latched on to either, or one of the many others; but newcomer BridgeURL has a completely distinct value proposition that sets it apart from the rest with one useful function — multiple-link sharing.
With BridgeURL, you can input multiple URLs and click “Create Link” to have the service generate a single URL that you then copy to share on
Android smartphone market share trails iPhone market share by a scant 9 percentage points in a recent study from analysis giant Nielsen.
According to statistics on overall U.S. market share, Android is the single fastest-growing mobile platform. By contrast, Apple’s iOSshows an ever-so-slight decline.
Other operating systems, including BlackBerry and Windows Mobile, show sharp declines over the past quarter. Still, BlackBerry is the top mobile OS by the numbers, with around 30% of the total market share.
Last month, Nielsen’s stats showed that Android was the preferred platform of new smartphone buyers, suggesting that big-budget marketing campaigns for devices such as theDroid lineup and HTC’s Evo were paying off.
In fact, Androids outsold iPhones for the first time ever in the first half of 2010.
Nevertheless, these stats still show iOS devices as the leading smartphones in the Android-versus-iPhone battle. Today, Android has 19% of the mobile OS market, while Apple’s iOS smartphones have 28%.

Age also plays a role in which device a given smartphone user is likely to choose. Members of the under-35 crowd
For over two decades Microsoft and Apple have had the technology industry’s most high-profile (and occasionally the most rancorous) rivalry. But today, I doubt that either of them considers the other to be its chief rival.
If you could sequester either Apple CEO Steve Jobs or Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer in their office and close the door and ask (off the record) for the name of their top rival, I suspect both of them would give you the same answer: Google.
For that reason alone, you’d think Microsoft and Apple would be more likely than ever to collaborate (and that’s certainly a possibility). However, it’s also easy to forget that the two companies have a long history of working together and developing products for each others’ platforms. They are traditional frenemies.
The fact that Microsoft released Office for Mac 2011 this week (more on that in a second) is only the latest example of times when the two have been on the same page. These are still the exception rather than the rule, but we’ve come up with a list of the 10 best collaborative moments between the two companies.

10. Microsoft launches Outlook for Mac in Office 2011

With Office for Mac 2011, released on October 26, Microsoft has once again made the Mac OS X version of its world-dominant productivity suite jive a lot more closely with the latest Windows version, after several Mac editions that diverged wildly from their Windows counterparts in recent years. But, by far the most significant part of Office 2011 is that it brings back a version of Microsoft Outlook for email and Exchange syncing, replacing the Mac-specific Entourage (a horribly buggy piece of software). This makes the latest Macs much better equipped to function in the business world.

9. Apple and Microsoft spurn Blu-ray for digital downloads

Both Apple and Microsoft have been under pressure for the last couple years to get on the Blu-ray bandwagon. Microsoft has been under pressure to put Blu-ray in Xbox 360 and Apple has been under pressure to put Blu-ray drives in Macs. However, both have resisted and have responded with the same reason why: Blu-ray is an expensive temporary solution and the future of high definition video is digital downloads

A smartphone is one thing that makes your life smarter and smoother. In this fast-paced technology age, we need to keep in touch with internet everytime. Smartphone provides instant access to the internet and email and thus helps you communicate with your clients, colleagues, friends and family anytime, anywhere. It also serves as a multimedia device. You can have entertainment while playing a MP3 or watching a full-lengh movie on your smartphone. Third party applications also get a boost with smartphone allowing thousands of apps to download at various prices. Here we go with our top ten picks for smartphones of 2010.

1. Apple iPhone 3GS

Re: Apple iPhone 3G
Apple iPhone 3G hold the top rank in our list. People became crazy with its handful of new features and apps as it hit the stores on June 19, 2009. Here are some striking features of Apple iPhone 3Gs.
  • 3.5″ Touchscreen
  • 32 GB memory
  • 3.2 megapixel auto focus camera
  • extended battery life
  • Video recorder

2. Motorola Droid

It has a gorgeous display with 440×854 resolution. It has improved speeds over the previous Android devices. It enables faster web browsing.
  • 3.7″ screen size
  • 5 megapixel camera
  • 256 MB memory
  • Google Maps Navigation app
  • Video recorder
  • better messaging and contact management

3. HTC Nexus One by Google

Nexus One greatly enhances the Google Android family with a fast processor, good call quality, and improved voice control features. Moreover, all versions of the phone will be unlocked.
  • 5 megapixel camera
  • 512 MB memory
  • 3.7-inch AMOLED touchscreen
  • classic display with a resolution of 480×800 pixels
  • runs on Android 2.1 operating system.
  • 2.1, Stereo Bluetooth.
  • 10 hours talk time.

4. BlackBerry Storm 2

Re: BlackBerry Storm 2
Smartphone from BlackBerry is a dashing one. It looks awesome. It has a display of high resolution. Other key features include:
  • Large, 3.25″ touch screen displays
  • 3.2 MP camera with video recording
  • High resolution 480 x 360 pixel color display
If you had been holding on to Microsoft Windows XP and just recently made the move to Windows 7, you’ve begun to discover that a lot has changed in the operating system besides just the new user interface with all its new bells and whistles.
For example, chances are that one of the first places that you probably turned to when troubleshooting problems in Windows XP was the Event Viewer. Well, when you get to Windows 7’s Event Viewer, you are in for a new experience.
In this edition of the Windows Desktop Report, I’ll introduce you to some of the new features in Windows 7’s Event Viewer.
This blog post is also available in PDF format in a TechRepublic download.

An overview

As you know, Event Viewer maintains logs that record information about program, security, and system events that occur on your system. While XP’s Event Viewer is an effective tool that you can use to view and manage event logs, gather information about hardware and software problems, as well as monitor security events, it does have some shortcomings. Perhaps the biggest drawback is that XP’s Event Viewer does such a good job at logging events, that the number of items in the log can be staggering. As such, sorting through the logs can be a very daunting task. To add insult to injury, not all the events are documented very well and many aren’t documented at all — often leaving even the most experienced troubleshooter puzzled.
Another drawback in the system stems from the fact that Windows XP has other logs that are stored as text files on the hard disk. This means that when troubleshooting problems, you may have to scan through a bunch of text files in addition to scanning through Event Viewer.
Fortunately, Windows 7’s developers have spent a great deal of time and effort on improving Event Viewer. Let’s take a closer look.

The new Event Viewer

To begin with, the Windows 7 version of the Event Viewer has been completely rewritten with a new user interface that makes it much easier to filter and sort events as well as control which type of events are logged. In addition, you can now perform some basic diagnostic tasks right from within Event Viewer itself.
Microsoft has stated that they are going to impose stricter standards in order to ensure that events logged in