Updated

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Google spokeswoman Eileen Rodriguez shot down the latest Google PC/Wal-Mart rumors (see our earlier entry about this), saying: “We have many PC partners who serve their markets exceedingly well, and we see no need to enter the market.”

Wish we could say “case closed,” and move on, but Eileen did not address the possibility that Google is developing its own operating system and may be working with PC manufacturers to deliver something like bala described in comments on our earlier post. Here is the Merc story about the latest Google buzz at CES, including analyst Safa Rashtchy’s outrageous $600 target this year for Google’s stock price and Skype’s new phone.

Finally, what about the Google Cubes? The rumor seems to stem from…

tech writer Robert Cringely’s report here.

Snippet:

But the most important reason for Google to distribute its data centers in this way is to work most efficiently with a hardware device the company is thinking of providing to customers. This embedded device, for which I am afraid I have no name, is a small box covered with many types of ports–USB, RJ-45, RJ-11, analog and digital video, S-video, analog and optical sound, etc. Additional I/O that can’t be seen is WiFi and Bluetooth. This little box is Google’s interface to every computer, TV, and stereo system in your home, as well as linking to home automation and climate control. The cubes are networked together wirelessly in a mesh network, so only one need be attached to your broadband modem or router. Like VoIP adapters (it does that too, through the RJ-11 connector) the little cubes will come in the mail and when plugged in will just plain work.

Search expert John Battelle concludes: “I find both hard to buy. Really hard to buy. Why? Well, it’s not like Apple, Dell, and tons of others don’t want to make the same thing (the cube, anyway), and it’s not like they haven’t thought it through.”

Oh, and Google’s home page looking particularly funky today (update: explanation in comment below):

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