Here’s the latest action:
Google Korea has cluttered page — This is a striking departure from the spartan interface Google is known for. Details here. We checked with Google, and a spokeswoman confirmed the Korean site was developed in response to market research and feedback from Korean users. She called it a “new intuitive and easy-to-use design” that helps discover Google products and services.
AOL serving ads in IM and chat — AOL subsidiary Userplane lets Website publishers install IM, chat and other widgets and serve advertising within them, sharing revenue with Userplane. It is called Userplane Money.
Volpi joins Joost? — Mike Volpi, who gave up his CEO-in-waiting job at Cisco in February, is reportedly joining Internet TV company Joost as CEO (source: PaidContent). Volpi served on the board of Skype, the previous company of Joost’s co-founders Janus Friis and Niklas Zennström, so this isn’t out of the blue.
RealNetworks releases new player that lets you capture Flash video — With one click on a video you see online, you can save the file — whether Flash, QuickTime or Windows Media — to your desktop, and burn it to a CD or DVD. The player will be out next month. This capability has been offered by other companies, but not by a major player like Real. Video with DRM, however, won’t work. If you’re interested in this, Scoble has details in the video below:
Google Street View continued — They should have called Google’s latest map service, Street View the Google Living Room View instead. Turns out Google has been driving its own cars around the Bay Area and collecting street level views, including of tabby cats in people’s homes. Bizarre. Google also partnered with Immersive Media for the street service.
Panoramio, bought by Google — For every company squashed out of existence by Google for doing mashups that Google can easily replicate, there’s one that ends up getting snapped up with welcome Google dollars. Panoramio, which lets users upload their photos to share them on Google Earth, is the latest.
Senator Hillary Clinton’s clean-tech agenda — Passing through Silicon Valley today, she lobbies for the establishment of a Strategic Energy Fund to coordinate research on energy and global-warming solutions, provide tax incentives for home and businesses to become more energy efficient, and help install E85 pumps for ethanol-enhanced gasoline and more. See the WSJ, which reports she’d even support the creation of bacteria to remove radioactive materials from the atmosphere.
Despite past failures, another effort to take on the NFL — Bill Hambrecht, the well-known San Francisco banker who tried to take on the IPO establishment with his “Open IPO,” is doing it again. He’s starting a professional football league called the United Football League. So far, he and his partner, Tim Armstrong, a senior executive at Google, have pledged $2 million each. Mark Cuban, the billionaire who owns the N.B.A.’s Dallas Mavericks, will be a team owner. Hambrecht, you may forget, has a history. He was part owner of a team of the earlier failure, the United States Football League. (See NYT)
Facebook’s Platform slammed this afternoon — After seeing Facebook’s Platform site down periodically over the course of this afternoon, we checked with Facebook to ask what was up. Spokeswoman Brandee Barker: “We’re experiencing an unexpected surge in the number of applications being built on Facebook Platform – more than 300 as of this morning.”
Is EMI’s music really DRM-free? — Well, that’s the announcement we covered earlier, but what we didn’t know at the time is that the EMI songs sold via iTunes without DRM still have a user’s full name and account e-mail embedded in them, which means that dropping that new DRM-free song on your favorite P2P network could come back to bite you (Arstechnica).
News corp confirms Flektor and Photobucket purchases — See statement here. Photobucket deal rumored to be $250 million.
Attributor to track copyright material for AP — Attributor, a company in Redwood City, Calif., said its filtering technology will be used to fingerprint AP copy and to identify and document its display wherever it appears across the Internet. Attributor is just one of many digital fingerprinting technologies that have popped up over the past year.
Yahoo’s technology chief resigns from Yahoo — Farzad Nazem leaves just six months after Yahoo named him head of the company’s newly created technology group, saying he simply wants to retire.
Want to try Spock? — Here are a few invitations for Spock‘s people search engine, still in closed testing.
Google Mapplets — Just when you thought you’d seen enough Google Maps, there’s another barrage coming: Google has introduced Mapplets, giving developers a way to perform specialized searches directly within Google Maps. The example below is of movie search. You type in a zip code and a movie, and voila.