TWiST #197 News Software
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TWiST #197 News

News stories we're covering for This Week in Startups Episode #197, airing on Friday, October 14th, will be posted here. This is an open list, so in addition to voting for the stories you want to hear about, now you can go to the bottom of the page and suggest your own! The big startup and tech industry stories from the week that get the most votes will be featured on the show, and if you suggested them, we may even give you a shoutout on the air! And don't forget to click through to Page 2 to see all the stories we're working on!

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    The iPhone 4S just broke Apple's sales records. The company's latest smartphone, which was unveiled last week, sold over 1 million units in its first 24 hours of being available to pre-order.

    When the iPhone 4 launched last year, it set a record for Apple by racking up 600,000 pre-orders in a single day. Apple's latest gadget has smashed the company's previous single day sales record by more than 66 percent. In terms of first day pre-orders, the iPhone 4S is the most successful product Apple has ever released.

    SOURCE: ReadWriteWeb
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    Google engineer Steve Yegge wrote an extended rant on the social networking service bemoaning what he calls Google's "failure to understand platforms." Yegge meant to just share the missive internally with other Google employees, but accidentally published it to the general public.

    Much of the discussion centers on Yegge's years with Amazon and complaints about that company's organization and culture. But he definitely gets in some attacks as well on the failures of Google+.

    Key quote:

    "Google+ is a knee-jerk reaction, a study in short-term thinking, predicated on the incorrect notion that Facebook is successful because they built a great product. But that’s not why they are successful. Facebook is successful because they built an entire constellation of products by allowing other people to do the work. So Facebook is different for everyone. Some people spend all their time on Mafia Wars. Some spend all their time on Farmville. There are hundreds or maybe thousands of different high-quality time sinks available, so there’s something there for everyone."

    Later, he calls Google Plus a "pathetic afterthought." The original post has been deleted, but has already been reshared repeatedly and thus is pretty simple to find.

    QUESTIONS: Do you agree with Yegge's assessment, that Google doesn't understand platforms, and that they haven't put enough time, resources or care into Google+? If you were his manager at Google, how would you deal with this situation?

    SOURCE: SiliconFilter
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    Zynga unveiled a new game platform at its "Unleashed" event in San Francisco that will compete directly with players’ time now spent on Facebook. The platform, which will launch sometime soon, is code-named "Project Z," and will be hosted on Zynga’s own site.

    Project Z was one of 10 announcements made today, including five new mobile games and Facebook games, too. The event marks the first time Zynga hosted a major press conference, which is notable given that it is preparing for a $1 billion IPO.

    SOURCE: AllThingsD
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    In a post on the official Google blog, Google VP of Product Bradley Horowitz announced that the company planned to axe a number of products in the coming weeks. Included in the purge:

    - Code Search and the Code Search API, designed to allow users to search for open source code around the Web

    - Jaiku, the micro-blogging and social networking community Google purchased in 2007

    - iGoogle social features, which will go so Google can emphasize the Google+ social network

    - Special university-only Google search features

    - Google Buzz, which will integrate its data back in to the Google Profile account

    QUESTIONS: Anything here you think people will miss? How did Jaiku manage to hang on so long?

    SOURCE: TechCrunch
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    The European Commission approved Microsoft’s $8.5 billion acquisition of Skype last week.

    This comes just months after Skype acquired GroupMe in August for $85 million.

    Now comes the hard part — we’ll see if Microsoft can successfully integrate the more nimble Skype and allow it to thrive within their system.

    Microsoft is also not known for being able to hold on to those who come in from the outside, in large part due to its insular culture of longtime execs.

    SOURCE: AllThingsD
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    Bravo, the cable television network known for such reality shows as The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and The Millionaire Matchmaker, is apparently looking for young professionals to star in an upcoming reality show based on Silicon Valley

    Movies like The Social Network have made the tech world seem sexy, but the industry’s real insiders are quick to point out that reality here is not all that telegenic

    This follows on the heels of Bloomberg TV’s new reality program about TechStars, the Boulder, Colo.-based startup accelerator

    From the casting call email: "Are you a hotshot lawyer, who works hard from 9-5 but parties even harder after dark? Maybe you just got your break working at one of the biggest internet companies burning through the late-night hours and partying in the even later ones? Or maybe you’re a middle school teacher in a small suburb, but you have a secret wild side? Looking for people in their late 20′s – to early 40′s… living in Silicon Valley… and who have a full time job and a full time lifestyle."

    QUESTIONS: Is this at all an accurate representation of life in Silicon Valley? What will the diversity be like on this show? Will we see the people from all backgrounds--camera-ready or not--or will we see only the idealized versions?

    SOURCE: GigaOm
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